Legal actions by the Competition and Markets (CMA) against leading care home provider Care UK are to be heard at the High Court in July.
The proceedings were launched by the CMA in February last year after Care UK refused to refund residents who had paid compulsory upfront fees (see BREAKING NEWS: CMA launches legal action against Care UK over upfront fees).
The CMA had previously told Care UK to refund over 1,600 residents who were charged as much as £3,000 in upfront fees (see (see BREAKING NEWS: CMA threatens legal action against Care UK over upfront fees).
The competition watchdog said it believed Care UK was breaking consumer protection law by requiring a substantial non-refundable fee from residents for which they received no services or products.
In addition, the CMA believed Care UK’s description of the charge and what it was for was misleading and that residents were told about it too late in the admission process.
Care UK has fiercely contested the CMA’s action saying there was no evidence its residents had been disadvantaged or that its fees had breached consumer law.
The CMA launched action to support care home consumers’ rights following the publication of its Care homes market study report in November 2017.
The consumer watchdog secured £2m in compensation for Sunise Senior Living residents following an investigation into compulsory upfront fees in May 2018.