Housing and Care Contract Act: Applies in these cases

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Written By Rivera Claudia

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When does the Housing and Care Contract Act apply? We have compiled examples for you.

The Housing and Care Contract Act (WBVG) protects the rights of consumers who live permanently in a nursing home or use short-term care. Under certain conditions, the law also applies to shared apartments or assisted living facilities. According to the WBVG, the facility must then adhere to certain rules in many areas. This applies, for example, to the design of the contract, termination and the question of what costs the provider may charge. The WBVG also contains rules regarding salary increases that must be observed if costs increase.

1. Example: The nursing home

Mrs. Hellmann, 85, is in need of care and has care level 3. She can no longer be cared for at home. Mrs. Hellmann therefore wishes to move into the Alpha GmbH nursing home and signs a contract with the nursing home. The facility will provide her with a room and provide the necessary care services.

Due to her need for care, Mrs Hellmann moves into a room in a nursing home and at the same time receives nursing and care services there. The contractual relationship is therefore subject to the provisions of the Housing and Care Contract Act (WBVG).


2. Example: Senior residence with in-house nursing service

Müller, 78, lives on the 2nd floor of an apartment building and relies on a walker. There is no elevator in the building and he cannot leave the building without the help of others. He is also no longer able to take care of his home independently. That is why he rents an apartment in the “Am Sonnenhügel” senior citizens’ home. At the time of moving in, he does not require any help with personal hygiene, eating or dressing. However, when renting the apartment, he agrees, as a precautionary measure, that he will be looked after and cared for by the senior citizens’ in-house nursing service should he require appropriate assistance.

The seniors’ home provides nursing services. Should Mr. Müller need assistance at a later date, the home undertakes to provide these services. This means that all criteria for the application of the WBVG have been met.


3. Example: The shared apartment for people with disabilities

Peter Beyer, 26, is dependent on professional help from others due to a disability. He rents a room in his shared apartment from the Gamma eV association, which runs a facility for the disabled, and at the same time agrees to receive services to help him cope with everyday life, as well as the necessary care.

The services used to cope with everyday life are care services. Mr Beyer needs care and support services due to his disability and has therefore moved into the shared flat. The Housing and Care Contract Act is therefore applicable.


4. Example: Assisted Living

Mr. Maurer, who is 86 years old, is still quite agile. But he wants to take precautions in case one day he can no longer take care of himself. He rents a small two-room apartment with kitchen and bathroom from Betreut Wohnen GmbH. At the same time, he has contractually agreed that the company will clean the apartment twice a month and the windows four times a year. Mr. Maurer also uses the GmbH’s catering service. Should he need further care, the company has agreed to admit Mr. Maurer to the Vital gGmbH inpatient care center, a subsidiary of Betreut Wohnen GmbH.

According to his current contract, Mr Maurer is entitled to be taken in by Vital gGmbH as soon as he needs care. These care services are provided by economically linked companies, so the law must therefore apply.


5. Example: The nursing home community

Mrs Engler would like to move into a room in the “Sonnenstrahl retirement community” run by the Hagels. The operator, Mrs Hagel, explains to Mrs Engler that concluding the rental agreement for the room in the shared apartment is only possible if she also concludes a care or support agreement. In order to be able to move into the shared apartment, Mrs Engler must agree to certain care or support services, even if she does not actually need any help.

If the conclusion of a housing contract is made dependent on the conclusion of a nursing care contract, the WBVG also applies.


6. Example: Shared apartment with nursing service supervision

Mr. Lenz owns several properties in which he rents out apartments commercially to establish retirement communities. Mr. Prinz, aged 63, who is in need of care, Mr. König, aged 70, who is in need of care, and Mr. König, aged 70, who is in need of care due to a disability, rent this apartment together from Mr. Lenz. The lease agreement contains a clause according to which the three members of the shared apartment are obliged to contract the “Sunday Nursing Service” for the provision of the necessary care and support services.

In the example, the three men appear as consumers, even if they act together. They are therefore protected by the WBVG. The regulations of the WBVG apply to the retirement community because a specific care service is named in the contract, which must be ordered with the care and/or support.

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