A number of us are assessing the interest from other referral and placement agencies across the country regarding pursuing a collective formal complaint to the Federal Trade Commission, or any other government agency to assess the need for a further investigation into the business practices of some of the Online referral agencies.
We will be asking the FTC and/or other Governmental agencies to evaluate their relationship with families and with the assisted living communities at large, to assess if they violate any Federal or State Fair Business Practice laws.
Specifically, we are discussing their current agreements which include a "First to send the referral owns the client for life" clause.
We believe that families should have the right to work with any agency that they choose at any time, regardless if they have filled out an online form.
We also believe that families may be unknowingly "entering into an agreement" with some online companies which then surrender their personal information to communities for two years or more.
We also believe that the agency that truly places that family member should obtain the rights to the commissions for that client.
We believe that their agreements may obstruct fair competition in the marketplace since many of us knowingly end up ultimately working for free.
This happens when clients have previously filled out an online form or have spoken to an online company and then choose to work with us for more personal services.
We believe that some of the online companies do in fact, know of the situation and put undue pressure on the assisted living communities and the residential homes if they do not pay them.