FROM JUDGMENT ENTERED IN THE COURT OF COMMON PLEAS COUNTY OF
SUMMIT, OHIO CASE No. CV 2015 08 3959
M. NEWMAN, JR. and MICHAEL M. MAHON, Attorneys at Law, for
LAWRENCE R. BACH and TODD A. MAZZOLA, Attorneys at Law, for
DECISION AND JOURNAL ENTRY
Appellants, Manor Care of Barberton OH, LLC d/b/a ManorCare
Health Services-Barberton ("ManorCare Barberton")
and HCR ManorCare, Inc. ("HCR ManorCare") (jointly
"ManorCare"), appeal the decision of the Summit
County Court of Common Pleas denying their motion to stay
proceedings pending arbitration. This Court affirms.
On June 21, 2013, Kimberly Kallas was admitted to ManorCare
Barberton for physical and occupational therapy following
treatment at Akron City Hospital. Ms. Kallas, who was born
with spina bifida, was 41 years old at the time of her
admission to ManorCare Barberton. During her admission, she
signed a number of documents including a "Voluntary
Ms. Kallas, subsequently, filed suit against ManorCare
Barberton and HCR ManorCare. Based on the Arbitration
Agreement, ManorCare moved to stay the proceedings pending
arbitration. Ms. Kallas opposed the motion.
While not denying that she had signed the Agreement, Ms.
Kallas argued that the Agreement failed to identify ManorCare
Barberton or HCR ManorCare as parties to it. The Agreement
states it was "[m]ade on 6/21/13 (date) by and
between the Patient Kim Kallas or Patient's
Legal Representative self (collectively referred to
as 'Patient') and the Center___." The date, Ms.
Kallas' name, and the word "self were handwritten on
blank lines. The line following "Center" was left
blank. The agreement was signed by Kim Kallas and a
"Center Representative." The signature block also
contained Ms. Kallas' printed name and the date. It did
not contain the printed name of the "Center
Representative" or further identify the
"Center." Ms. Kallas argued that, because the
Agreement did not contain "any actual designation of who
are the actual parties to the Agreement other than [Ms.]
Kallas[, ]" it was unenforceable. She also argued that
the Agreement was unconscionable and unenforceable on that
basis as well.
The trial court denied the motion to stay proceedings pending
arbitration. The court found that the Arbitration Agreement
identified Ms. Kallas as a party, but lacked a counterparty.
The court concluded that, without the identity of the parties
to be bound, the Agreement was unenforceable. The trial court
did not reach the issue of unconscionability.
ManorCare Barberton and HCR ManorCare appeal raising one
assignment of error.
TRIAL COURT ERRED BY NOT GRANTING DEFENDANT-APPELLANTS'
MOTION TO STAY PROCEEDINGS PENDING ARBITRATION WHERE THERE