Manor Care, Inc. v. The Estate of Mary Lynn Kuhn

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NOT FINAL UNTIL TIME EXPIRES TO FILE REHEARING MOTION AND, IF FILED, DETERMINED IN THE DISTRICT COURT OF APPEAL OF FLORIDA SECOND DISTRICT MANOR CARE, INC.; MANOR CARE ) OF AMERICA, INC.; MANORCARE ) HEALTH SERVICES, INC.; MANOR ) CARE OF BOYNTON BEACH, INC.; ) PAMELA M. COX; LINDA HARKER ) a/k/a LINDA RAE HARKER; DOUGLAS ) POTTS; CATHY SPRAGUE a/k/a ) CATHY ANN SPRAGUE; JACQUELINE ) PERSHING a/k/a JACQUELINE ) LOUISE PERSHING; DEBORAH ) GOWING a/k/a DEBORAH KAY ) GOWING; BRENDA HEBDEN a/k/a ) BRENDA SUE HEBDEN; and ) MARGARET THURSTON as to ) MANORCARE HEALTH SERVICES, ) ) Appellants, ) ) v. ) ) THE ESTATE OF MARY LYNN ) KUHN, by and through DOUGLAS B. ) STALLEY, Personal Representative, ) ) Appellee. ) _______________________________ ) Opinion filed November 25, 2009. Appeal pursuant to Fla. R. App. P. 9.130 from the Circuit Court for Lee County; Sherra Winesett, Judge. Sylvia H. Walbolt, Matthew J. Conigliaro, Edward W. Collins, and Annette Marie Lang of Carlton Fields, P.A., St. Petersburg, for Appellants. Case No. 2D08-267 Isaac R. Ruiz-Carus of Wilkes & McHugh, P.A., Tampa, and Susan B. Morrison of Law Offices of Susan B. Morrison, P.A., Tampa, for Appellee. NORTHCUTT, Judge. Manor Care, Inc., and related entities and employees appeal a nonfinal order denying their motion to compel arbitration in this suit by the Estate of Mary Lynn Kuhn. The circuit court concluded that the arbitration agreement was unenforceable because its limits of liability violated public policy. However, this court has directed that arbitrators should, in the first instance, decide whether an arbitration agreement violates public policy. See Rollins, Inc. v. Lighthouse Bay Holdings, Ltd., 898 So. 2d 86 (Fla. 2d DCA 2005); see also Jaylene, Inc. v. Steuer, No. 2D07-5305 (Fla. 2d DCA Nov. 13, 2009). Accordingly, we reverse the order denying the motion to compel arbitration. Reversed and remanded for further proceedings consistent with this opinion. VILLANTI and CRENSHAW, JJ., Concur. -2-