One of the most difficult decisions a family may have to make is whether to place their elderly loved one in a nursing home. Unfortunately, as we are living longer this decision is one which more and more families are forced to face.
No one “wants” to live in a nursing home, but in some cases it is the most sensible decision. Seniors often need a level of care or supervision which their family simply cannot provide because of work or time constraints. In other cases, a loved one’s health may require specialized care which can only be safely delivered by nurses and other medical caregivers. When that decision is made and a facility is found, the expectation of the family is that their loved one will be well cared for. And that care will be delivered with the dignity and compassion their family deserves. However, as a nursing home lawyer Camden, NJ families recommend, the Lawyers at Davis & Brusca can attest that many facilities prove to be a place of nightmares. All too many nursing home residents suffer abuse and neglect at the hands of the very people entrusted to care for them.
Here is what you should know to spot a potential case of nursing home abuse or neglect.
Nurses, caregivers or other attending staff are responsible for the wellbeing and safety of the residents in their care. However, staff members may be negligent or too aggressive with patients, causing harm. Interactions between staff and residents can be stressful or frustrating at times, but that is never an excuse for irresponsible or abusive behavior. No matter how difficult or uncooperative a resident may get, the caregiver must remain professional and treat them with respect and care so that the resident doesn’t suffer an injury.
There are different types of neglect and abuse that nursing home residents may be subjected to. For example, staff may fail or refuse to provide the resident with enough food and water. Staff may refuse or fail to help them shower or attend to personal care. They may delay their ability to use the bathroom, leaving them to sit in soiled diapers or linens, or refuse to dress them in the clothes the Resident selected. Staff are responsible for making sure the needs of residents are acknowledged and taken care of. They must check on the patient periodically in case they need help moving to another location or need assistance with an activity. A nursing home resident’s room must be properly cleaned and free of clutter. If the facility is cluttered or there are other hazards, residents may fall or otherwise presented with a dangerous environment. Injuries happen all too frequently in this setting.
Another sign that we, as Camden, NJ nursing home lawyers know indicates nursing home neglect, is pressure injuries (also referred to as pressure sores or bed sores). These horrible wounds are caused by sustained, unrelieved pressure. They generally form over boney prominences, including the sacrum, hips and heels. When a resident is unable to effectively move themselves, it is critical for nursing home staff to regularly reposition them. This is known as “offloading pressure”. Failure by the staff to properly offload pressure is a form of neglect or abuse, and is a basis for brining a legal claim. Other signs of abuse or neglect are falls, broken bones, bruises, cuts, welts, or other unexplained injuries.
Emotional abuse is another common harm suffered in nursing homes. A staff member may act in a manner that is overly aggressive, inflicting fear and anxiety in a resident. They may be verbally abusive and use harsh language towards residents. The signs that this is happening are more subtle, but the harm can be equally damaging to an elderly person. If you are visiting your loved one at a nursing home, watch how they react to staff. If they become suddenly uncomfortable or anxious around a certain individual, it may be a sign that abuse is occurring.
Financial exploitation of the elderly is, unfortunately, a common occurrence in nursing homes. It is not always obvious, and the exploited resident may not believe it is happening or may refuse to give details about it out of fear. A staff member may be manipulating your loved one through scare tactics or by gaining their trust so that they can gain access to their assets. Signs that your elderly loved one may be a victim of financial exploitation include:
Nursing home settlements occur after lawsuits have been filed by plaintiffs (victims of abuse and their family members) against the defendants (usually the nursing facility, its staff, and/or administrators).
In nursing home settlements, the defendants agree to pay the plaintiffs for the harm that was done. The case is then dismissed.
Settling the lawsuit allows plaintiffs to receive compensatory damages without going to trial. Lawyers representing victims will explain the risks associated with going to trial, which vary from case-to-case, so the client can make an informed decision as to whether to settle. However, the decision should be left to the plaintiff.
Settlements do not take away the pain of your loved one being mistreated, but they can bring a sense of justice to victims and families. Learn more about how nursing home settlements can help with a free case review.
Nursing home settlements are often the more practical option for victims of elder abuse, neglect, and medical malpractice who wish to seek financial compensation.
Some victims of nursing home abuse may seek a trial. While their goal may be to seek higher compensation than offered by the Defendant, there is no way to guarantee a jury verdict will result in a larger recovery than a settlement.
Every case is unique and the greatest impact comes from the specific evidence and details of the case. However, factors such as those listed below may also affect the sum of money a victim receives:
Nursing home abuse is a serious problem that should not be tolerated. If you suspect that abuse or neglect is occurring, gather as much information as you can regarding the incident. Try to speak to your loved one about their experience, but if they are not uncomfortable don’t press them further as it may worsen their trauma. Talk to a lawyer to learn about what steps you should take and learn more about filing a claim.
Making the decision to place a loved one in a nursing home is difficult. You want to believe that the nursing home staff will provide your friend or family member with a loving environment to help them live out their golden years in peace with the support they need. However, some nursing homes fail to provide adequate care. In these cases, you may have grounds to hire a nursing home lawyer in Camden, NJ, and pursue a lawsuit. Here are three situations that may require you to pursue a nursing home lawsuit.
Many people rely on medication to help them control chronic health conditions. Older people sometimes have trouble remembering to take the medicine they need, and the nursing home staff is responsible for administering the medication at the correct dosage. If your loved one isn’t getting the right type or dosage of medication, you may be able to file a lawsuit for medication mismanagement. The attorneys at Davis & Brusca Trial Lawyers can help you determine if your case was accidental or intentional.
Unfortunately, some nursing home staff members have been known to physically abuse residents of the center. If your loved one makes comments about unwanted sexual advances or has frequent bruises that can’t be easily explained, it may be time to pursue legal action. A reputable attorney from Davis & Brusca Trial Lawyers can help you gather evidence for the case.
A nursing home should provide a safe, clean environment for your loved one to live in. If any of your friend or family member’s basic needs are not being met, you could sue for negligence. Make sure your loved one’s room is cleaned daily and nutritious meals are provided regularly. Your loved one should also have access to help with bathing and eating if necessary.
A nursing home should be a safe place, but unfortunately, senior citizens are often taken advantage of because they cannot fend for themselves. If you have made the difficult decision to place a friend or family member in a nursing home, it is important to keep an eye out for any of the situations discussed above. Contact a nursing home lawyer in Camden, NJ, immediately if you think you have grounds for a lawsuit. You need to move your loved one to a safer environment, and he or she deserves compensation for any pain and suffering caused by the nursing home staff.
If the nursing home participates in Medicare, its residents have the right to be free from any kind of abuse and from any method of restraint that’s imposed for discipline or convenience, instead of treating a medical condition. If the nursing home doesn’t participate in Medicare, they are subject to state laws, which vary from state to state.
Every state has a method for you to report nursing home abuse, exploitation or neglect. Residents, their family members and staff of the nursing home may be interviewed. If the allegations you make are found to be true, adult protective services will step in to try to prevent them from happening again.
However, you may not be satisfied with how things turned out after you filed your complaints to the state. In that case, you may want to speak to a nursing home lawyer in Camden, NJ, from Davis & Brusca Trial Lawyers about filing a lawsuit against the nursing home.
First, you should report abuse, extortion or neglect to the managers or owners of the nursing home. Don’t use the word “lawsuit” when you’re speaking with them. Next, document as much as you can. Take pictures and make written records that describe your loved one’s appearance, comportment, and condition. Once you’ve gathered a substantial body of evidence, call Davis & Brusca Trial Lawyers to speak with a nursing home lawyer in Camden, NJ about the possibility of a lawsuit.
You should file a nursing home lawsuit if you think your loved one is being mistreated. Even if your loved one has passed away, you should still file to bring to light what had happened to her before she died. You may want to punish the nursing home, too, in the hopes that the situation will be rectified so other residents don’t have to suffer the indignities your loved one went through.
There are some types of evidence that are more powerful than others in a nursing home lawsuit. For example, if the state investigates allegations of elder abuse and finds those allegations to be true, they may fine the nursing home. That would bolster your case substantially. Your nursing home lawyer in Camden, NJ, can use the state’s findings as neutral third-party evidence.
It can be a difficult decision to put your loved one in a nursing home. Therefore, you need to make sure that he or she is protected. If you are concerned that your loved one might be taken advantage of, then you should reach out to a nursing home lawyer in Camden, NJ, such as an attorney from Davis & Brusca Trial Lawyers. How can you make sure your loved one is protected in a nursing home?
If you want to protect your loved one, you need to choose the right nursing home. Always take a look at a few reviews and ratings of that nursing home before you make a decision. In particular, you should look for any allegations of abuse. If the nursing home has a checkered past, you may want to choose a different option.
In a lot of situations, nursing home abuse takes place because family members do not visit very often. If you don’t show up to visit your loved one, the nursing home they feel like you don’t care about your loved one. Even though you might be busy, visit your loved one from time to time. Then, if you notice something is wrong, you may want to reach out to a nursing home lawyer in Camden, NJ who can help you.
During your visits, it is important to be vigilant. Look for signs of nursing home abuse. Do you see a bunch of bruises that you cannot explain? Are they are a bunch of burn injuries that are showing up out of nowhere? In particular, you need to believe your loved one if he or she tells you something is wrong. That way, you can work with an attorney who can conduct a full investigation.
In the end, one of the best ways to make sure that your loved one is protected is to contact a lawyer who can help you. In particular, you should look for a nursing home lawyer in Camden, NJ, such as an attorney from Davis & Brusca Trial Lawyers. A nursing home lawyer understands how to conduct a full investigation to figure out what is happening in the nursing home. Then, he or she can represent you if you need to bring a case against the nursing home. Reach out to a legal specialist who can assist you.
If you suspect your elderly loved one has been a victim of nursing home abuse or neglect, you need to take the steps right away to make sure that they are protected. In addition, your family may also be entitled to financial compensation for the injuries and losses your loved one has suffered. Contact Davis & Brusca, LLC to schedule a free and confidential consultation with a compassionate NJ nursing home lawyer and let us help your loved one top get justice.