New Year Ushers in New Illinois Law Authorizing Electronic Monitoring in Long-Term Care Facilities

Happy New Year!  In addition to New Year’s resolutions and newly created “to do lists,” the New Year typically brings with it the implementation of new laws.   The year of 2016 is no exception here in Illinois.  One of the new Illinois laws (effective January 1, 2016) which may be of particular interest to those residing in, or who have loved ones residing in, long-term care facilities is HB 2462.

HB 2462 created the Authorized Electronic Monitoring in Long-Term Care Facilities Act. This act provides that, subject to certain conditions, a resident of a facility licensed under the ID/DD Community Care Act or the Nursing Home Care Act shall be permitted to use an audio or video surveillance/monitoring system in his or her room at his or her expense. The implementation of this new law is designed to help to protect Illinois’ most vulnerable residents from potential abuse and neglect.  In addition to bearing the costs of the electronic monitoring system, there are numerous other conditions set forth within the act with which residents using monitoring systems must comply, including but not limited to:  the resident (or their representative) must consent to the use of the electronic monitoring in the resident’s room; the consent of any other person residing in the resident’s room must obtained; the facility must be notified of the resident’s intent to use a recording device and the type of the device that the resident will be using; the device must be in an open fixed position; and there must be a sign posted outside the resident’s room, which states, “This room is electronically monitored.” Additionally, the act imposes certain requirements with which long-term care facilities must also comply.  The act also prohibits facilities from discriminating and/or retaliating against a resident who uses a monitoring system; and establishes criminal penalties for a person or entity that knowingly hampers, obstructs, tampers with, or destroys an electronic monitoring device.  Although HB 2462 took effect on January 1, 2016, the Illinois Department of Public Health has an additional 60 days to prescribe the notification and consent form required by the act.

If you, or your loved one, resides in Illinois and you would like additional information regarding the specific details of the Authorized Electronic Monitoring in Long Term Care Facilities Act; and/or you would like to meet with one of our attorneys regarding other elder law issues, estate planning (including Wills and/or Trusts), life care planning (powers of attorney), special needs planning, probate and/or guardianship matters, please contact our office at 630-844-0065 to schedule an appointment.  The Elder Law Center, P.C. is located in Aurora, IL, Kane County, in the Chicago Western Suburbs.

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