Nursing homes are facilities where the elderly and disabled should be able to thrive and are taken care of. You entrust a nursing home or assisted care facility with a loved one who needs medical assistance. The facility ensures that the resident will be safe from harm and get all the care they need per their treatment plan.
If abuse is present in the facility, you must take immediate action for the safety of your loved one and then speak with a nursing home abuse lawyer near you from Gatti, Keltner, Bienvenu & Montesi, PLC.
Who Can You Sue for Abuse?
The first entity you think of suing is the nursing home, and you would be correct. They are responsible for everything within the facility, but other entities can bear responsibility in these cases. If the nursing home is a single entity, then there is only one party you will be suing.
However, if they are part of a larger or corporate-owned network, the process is a bit more complex.
For a free legal consultation, call (901) 526-2126
What Are the Signs of Abuse?
Abuse comes in many shapes, and you need to know the signs to look for when you visit a loved one in these facilities. Some common symptoms of abuse are:
- Sudden weight loss
- Over or under medication
- Unexplained bruises
- Unsanitary living conditions
Suppose you notice your loved one doesn’t want to see anyone or is retracting into isolation; that can be another sign that they are experiencing abuse at the hands of caregivers. Some residents feel shame and shut down instead of speaking up, which is why the family must take steps to investigate the cause of the behavior change.
What Are Some Examples of Nursing Home Abuse?
Abuse and neglect in nursing homes come in various forms. While there are psychical, emotional, financial, and psychological, you might not know what to look for. Some examples of abuse include:
- Sexual abuses
- Slapping or hitting a person
- Neglecting a resident’s hygiene
- Not feeding, bathing, or administering medication
- Theft of personal items or money
Click to contact our personal injury lawyers today
Can Residents Suffer Injuries from Abuse?
Yes, residents can suffer severe injuries that can be debilitating to their health and even lead to death. Some examples of injuries are:
- Head trauma
- Soft tissue injuries
- Internal bleeding
- Restraint marks
- Broken bones
There are many other injuries a nursing home resident can sustain from abusive practices in these facilities.
Complete a Free Case Evaluation form now
Why does Nursing Home Abuse Happen?
There are many reasons abuse and neglect occur in nursing homes; some are caregivers intentionally causing harm, and others are due to the negligent actions of the facility. Mismanagement or understaffing are ways that nursing home facilities act negligently. When there is not enough staff, or they are undertrained, it can lead to critical errors.
Nursing homes are also responsible for conducting background checks; if they hire a caregiver with a track record of neglect, they are liable for their actions.
What Types of Abuse Are There?
Nursing homes are meant to be safe, but abuse is prevalent and has evolved from just physical abuse. Other types of abuse include:
- Emotional abuse
- Sexual abuse
- Financial abuse or exploitation
- Willful deprivation
- Passive negligence
- Psychological abuse
What Is the Standard of Care for Nursing Homes?
A legal standard of care outlines how each resident must be treated in a nursing home. When they are about to enter, they will receive an assessment, and there is a team that will outline a treatment plan for medical care, nutrition, and limitations. Violation of the standard of care means the facility and the caregiver are liable.
Holding caregivers accountable is a bit complex but leave it up to your local nursing home abuse lawyer to review your options.
What Are Legal Rights Available for Nursing Home Residents?
Nursing home and long-term care facility residents have a bill of rights that outlines their legal rights and options when they enter a facility. Among those rights are the following:
- Privacy for personal care and medical treatment
- Freedom from chemical or physical restraints
- Privacy with visitors
- The right to sue a facility for neglect, exploitation, or abuse
These protections are federal, and when a facility does not respect the nursing home bill of rights, they must be held civilly liable for their actions or inactions,
How Long do I Have to Sue?
You don’t have to long to sue a nursing home for abuse. You must act as quickly as possible to ensure you do not miss out on any deadlines and lose your chance at compensation recovery. The statute of limitation varies by state from one year to three.
Instead of worrying about the statute of limitations, you should work with a nursing home abuse lawyer, familiar with these deadlines, and will ensure you do not miss any.
What Damages Can I Receive from a Suit?
These cases are very complex, and most often, the victim’s family is the one filing the lawsuit. Some nursing home residents cannot cognitively agree to a suit or other legal action and will therefore give power of attorney to a loved one. As a family member, you can recover compensation for the losses your loved one incurs from abuse, such as for:
- Pain and suffering
- Punitive damages
- Medical expenses
- Changing facilities costs
Some damages will have caps, so discussing recovery options with your nursing home abuse lawyer is essential. There are also exceptions to caps and contracts to review that can affect your recovery amount.
What Can a Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Do for You?
Nursing home abuse and neglect often fall under medical malpractice or healthcare liability, and you need someone with experience in these realms. Some nursing homes make families and residents sign arbitration agreements to prevent lawsuits, but you can still file a claim. You need a local nursing home abuse lawyer who will calculate the value of your losses, obtain medical opinions, work with expert witnesses, collect and review the evidence and keep you informed and protected.
Gatti, Keltner, Bienvenu, & Montesi, PLC, can do all this and more when you work with us.