Governor Deval Patrick today hosted a ceremonial bill signing for legislation that will give residents of continuing care retirement communities additional consumer protections and housing rights.
"We are committed to a policy of "Community First,' for the sake of both better management and personal independence," said Governor Patrick. "Massachusetts seniors should be able to retire knowing their finances are secure."
The legislation will give residents of Continuing Care Retirement Communities the right to establish a resident's association, receive a current copy of the facility disclosure statement and receive information on fees and construction.
Providers must make reasonable efforts to explain the terms of disclosure statements, adjustments in monthly fees, information that may affect the health and welfare of residents and the future of the facility, including the ownership and providers' financial health.
The legislation, An Act Relative to Residents of Continuing Care Retirement Communities, was originally signed into law on January 8, 2013. It was sponsored by Senator Patricia Jehlen, and supported by the Massachusetts Executive Office of Elder Affairs.
"I sponsored this bill to establish safeguards for seniors who choose to move into a CCRC, ensuring they are fairly represented as informed members of their CCRC," said Senator Jehlen. "It promises a sense of assurance that they have planned for their future wisely."
"Continuing Care Retirement Communities are settings that promote healthy living and help to keep senior citizens out of expensive nursing homes," said Senator Richard Moore. "This legislation ensures that residents are provided the necessary information so that their investments are protected and secure."
"Continuing Care Retirement Communities are an innovative model for long term care," said Representative James O'Day. "They offer a supportive environment allowing elders to age in place. I am glad that the Elder Affairs Committee, the Administration, advocates and representatives of Continuing Care Retirement Communities were able to come together to develop legislation that will ensure an additional level of financial security for the residents of these communities."