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Elder Care Operator and Plaintiff Attorney Announce Unprecedented Settlement Agreement in Class Action Lawsuit
Date:1/25/2008

of an independent monitor who will undertake quarterly inspections of select Sunwest facilities. In order to ensure the credibility of the monitor's independence, Sunwest has chosen to abdicate any involvement in the selection of the monitor, who will be selected by plaintiff attorney Stephen M. Garcia of The Garcia Law Firm.

"Sunwest Management cares about its residents," says Sunwest attorney Timothy R. Graves of Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith. "After a thorough self-assessment, the company decided that the best way it could demonstrate its concern for each and every resident whose care is entrusted to them was to spend company money in improving residential care rather than spending that same money in litigation."

Sunwest Management, headquartered in Salem, Oregon, operates approximately 250 elder care facilities nationwide. It is one of the leading elder care management and operators of such facilities in the country.

Each of the class action complaints alleged that Sunwest Management, Inc., its directors, and the approximately 16 residential elder care facilities in the state of California and the more than 50 facilities in Oregon that it owns, operates or manages, failed to comply with applicable laws and regulations governing the operation of residential care facilities for the elderly, resulting in the defendants receiving multiple citations of deficiencies from the California Department of Social Services and the Oregon Department of Human Services, respectively.

The lawsuits alleged that Sunwest and its facilities deliberately understaffed its "communities" by forcing each facility to operate under a budget, approved and directed by Sunwest Management and the directors of the individual facilities, that would increase business profits by charging for services that were not provided, such as adequately staffing the residential care facility as it advertises that it does.

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SOURCE The Garcia Law Firm
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