A Skilled Nursing Facility or a Residential Care Facility for the Elderly may only evict a resident for a reason specifically described in the statutes regulating such facilities. If a resident is evicted for a reason that does not appear in a code, the resident may have an action for wrongful eviction.
Skilled Nursing Facilities
A resident may only be evicted from a Skilled Nursing Facility for one of the following reasons:
- The transfer or discharge is necessary for the resident’s welfare and the resident’s needs cannot be met in the facility;
- The transfer or discharge is appropriate because the resident’s health has improved sufficiently so the resident no longer needs the services provided by the facility;
- The safety of individuals in the facility is endangered;
- The health of individuals in the facility would otherwise be endangered;
- The resident has failed, after reasonable and appropriate notice, to pay for (or to have paid under Medicare or Medicaid) a stay at the facility. For a resident who becomes eligible for Medicaid after admission to a facility, the facility may charge a resident only allowable charges under Medicaid; or
- The facility ceases to operate.
42 C.F.R § 483.12(a)(2), incorporated into California law by Health and Safety Code section 1599.1(i).
Residential Care Facility for the Elderly
A resident may only be evicted from a Residential Care Facility for the Elderly for one of the following reasons:
- The resident has not paid rent within ten days after the due date;
- The resident has broken the law and continues the violation after written notification;
- The resident failed to comply with one of the facility’s general policies that is in writing, is intended to make it possible for residents to live together, and is part of the admission agreement;
- The resident had an identified need at admission to the facility, and after a reappraisal conducted under 22 Cal. Code Regs. §87463, the person conducting the reappraisal believes the facility is inappropriate for the resident; or
- The facility changes its use.
Cal. Code Regs. tit. 22 § 87224(a).
Skilled Nursing Facility Versus Residential Care Facility for the Elderly
A Skilled Nursing Facility is defined by Health and Safety Code section 1250(c) as, “a health facility that provides skilled nursing care and supportive care to patients whose primary need is for availability of skilled nursing care on an extended basis.” Residents of Skilled Nursing Facilities depend on the facility’s operator and staff for nearly every aspect of their daily lives, including food, medicine, bedding, shelter, and health care. Despite the level of attention that must be paid to residents of Skilled Nursing Facilities, often times residents are abused and neglected. If a resident of a Skilled Nursing Facility has suffered or is suffering from abuse and neglect, he or she may be entitled to damages.
Residential Care Facilities for the Elderly are intermediate facilities between independent living and nursing homes. Health and Safety Code section 1569.2(k) defines a Residential Care Facility for the Elderly as, “a housing arrangement chosen voluntarily by persons 60 years of age or over, or their authorized representative, where varying levels and intensities of care and supervision, protective supervision, or personal care are provided, based upon their varying needs, as determined in order to be admitted and to remain in the facility.” Residential Care Facilities for the Elderly are very similar to Skilled Nursing Facilities and owe many of the same obligations to its residents as those owed by Skilled Nursing Facilities.