When you or a loved one has been abused or neglected in a nursing home, monetary compensation may be available.
What happens when a nursing home resident alleges abuse or neglect? How are these addressed in legal proceedings?
Every state in the U.S. has developed a system of reporting and investigating any allegation of elder abuse, neglect, or exploitation. Most commonly it is the family members who report the incident. This can be made to The National Center on Elder Abuse, the Eldercare Locator, Medicaid, or a nursing home abuse lawyer. In general an investigation will be carried out by professionals. This might include interviews with the elder resident, family members, staff of the nursing home, management, resident’s, and more. If any of the allegations being said are well founded, protective services might get involved to remedy the issue and prevent a recurrence from happening. In some cases the abuse or neglect might have been so severe that the victim or their loved ones are not happy with the remedial services. They might also believe they should be compensated for their losses. In this situation, it is advisable to talk with a nursing home lawyer to discuss civil action and criminal prosecution (when warranted).
If a lawyer believes you have a legal claim, he or she might begin the process of building a civil case against the nursing home and/or it’s parent company. A lawyer might also alert the appropriate organizations to notify them about the abuse or neglect. They will likely conduct their own investigation which could result in fines or warning notices. Other legal proceedings that might take place is criminal prosecution. The goal here will be to punish the harmful conduct; whereas, the civil action is meant to remedy damages through monetary compensation.
Signs of Nursing Home Abuse or Neglect
Unfortunately the signs of nursing home abuse or neglect often go unnoticed for months, even years. It is common for the resident to not say anything, even to those closest to them, because they fear repercussions. Often it is up to the loved ones to pay close attention to the situation and look for tell tale signs that may include:
- Bruises or pressure marks on the skin
- Restraint marks
- Broken bones and sprains
- Bed sores
- Poor hygiene
- Unusual weight loss
- Overdosing on medication
- Odd behavior (i.e. crying, shutting down, yelling, etc.)
- Development of an STD
- Denial of visitation
- Constantly being watched by staff
- Abrupt changes in financial situations
- Missing money
- Missing personal belongings
If you notice any of the aforementioned, or things that might not be listed here, it will be a good idea to consult a nursing home abuse lawyer.
When a Resident is In Immediate Danger
Should you believe your loved one is in a bad situation and at risk for being seriously harmed by the nursing home, dial 911 and then we encourage you to call our firm immediately. We will be happy to let you know what you can do now to safeguard the resident.
A Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer You Can Trust
Regardless of what the circumstances might be, call an attorney such as the nursing home lawyer Memphis TN to discuss your questions and concerns. Most Plaintiff attorneys work on a contingency fee basis which means there are no upfront fees.
Thanks to authors at Darrel Castle & Associates PLLC for insight into Personal Injury Law.