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Care home residents due share of £2m compensation

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Written by: Paloma Kubiak
09/05/2018
Hundreds of residents of a major care homes group are set to receive a share of £2m in compensation following its use of upfront fees.

Sunrise Senior Living Ltd has started writing to former and current residents letting them know they will receive money back after paying compulsory upfront fees.

An ongoing investigation into the care homes industry by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) revealed how some charge customers several thousands of pounds even before they had   secured a place at the home.

As a result, Sunrise will compensate those who paid these upfront fees and moved into a Sunrise home on or after 1 October 2015, and who left or passed away within two years of entering one of the care homes in England and Wales.

If a resident dies during this time, the CMA confirms the family will receive the compensation.

The level of compensation available will be based on the length of time spent in the home and the size of the fee paid.

Sunrise said approximately 700 former residents are entitled to a reimbursement and a number of current residents may also be eligible if they leave or pass away within two years of entering the care home.

Residents are set to receive an average of £3,000 and Sunrise has committed to stop charging these upfront fees for future residents.

George Lusty, the CMA’s senior director for consumer protection, said: “Care home residents shouldn’t be required to pay out thousands of pounds without being clear what they’re getting for their money. So, it’s only right that residents at Sunrise care homes will now receive compensation if they’ve paid these fees, and that future residents won’t have to make such payments at all.”

Dr Natalie-Jane Macdonald, UK CEO of Sunrise Senior Living, said: “We have been working closely with the CMA to review the way we organise our charges. We are pleased the CMA has recognised our constructive engagement and co-operation with this process from day one.”

“We previously charged an upfront Community Fee, which helped maintain the outstanding facilities and communal areas that our residents expect and enjoy. However, we have agreed with the CMA that residents who stayed with us for shorter than average periods were not able to enjoy as much of the benefit of our facilities as residents who are with us for a longer time, which is why we are voluntarily embarking on this reimbursement programme.”

Macdonald added the group has been recognised “as one of the best care providers in the UK” by The Care Quality Commission.

If you believe that you or your family member is eligible and you’ve not been contacted, get in touch with Sunrise at EnquiriesCF@sunriseseniorliving.com.

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