An Illinois law bars the use of pre-dispute arbitration agreements signed at the time of admission. This law was upheld by the Illinois appellate court. The Supremes refused this past week to hear an appeal, letting the lower court ruling stand, despite the existence of a federal law that permits the enforcement of such agreements. Massachusetts has ruled in favor of the enforceability of arbitration agreements covering nursing home disputes. As I've written in the past, Federal legislation has been introduced that would have the same effect as the Illinois law, but arbitration (and mediation) are often far preferable to court process for resolution of many types of disputes.