Judge Orders Los Angeles Assisted Living Facility
to Stop Abuse and Evictions
On August 9, 2016, Judge James Chalfant issued a temporary restraining order to protect the elderly and disabled residents of Brentwood Manor, a 140-bed residential care facility for the elderly (RCFE) in Los Angeles. Attorneys from Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles (LAFLA), and Neighborhood Legal Services of Los Angeles County (NLS), with pro bono legal services from Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP and assistance from CANHR, helped residents obtain the order requiring the owners and employees of Brentwood Manor to stop their campaign of harassment and illegal evictions, and comply with state laws regarding facility closures.
California law requires RCFEs that are closing to minimize the trauma associated with moving by providing meaningful assistance to vulnerable residents in assessing their needs and identifying appropriate alternative facilities that meet those needs. In May 2016, Brentwood Manor triggered this relocation protection law by distributing a letter to its residents stating that it was planning to sell the property and transfer ownership, and that residents would be required to vacate the premises by July 31, 2016.
Instead of providing its elderly and disabled residents with required information, documents and services, Brentwood Manor waged a campaign of abuse, neglect, intimidation, harassment and coercion in an effort to constructively evict its residents in violation of their rights. The illegal conduct included removing residents’ belongings from their rooms or threatening to throw them away, shutting off telephone access, failing to treat bedbug and other insect infestations, not repairing broken smoke detectors and call lights, and threatening to forcibly remove residents who remained in the facility after July 31st.
After repeated refusals by Brentwood Manor to comply with the law and refrain from violating residents’ rights, counsel brought suit and successfully obtained court intervention to protect the residents. Thanks to the extraordinary legal work of attorneys from LAFLA, NLS and Morgan Lewis, the owners and employees of Brentwood Manor are now prohibited from evicting residents, transferring residents to other care facilities without obtaining knowing written consent, stopping critical care services, and closing the facility without first providing requisite relocation services. Judge Chalfant also ordered the facility to treat residents’ belongings for bedbugs so that they do not bring the infestation to other facilities.
For more information, see:
Temporary Restraining Order