When to Call a Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer
Many elderly persons end up needing some form of care; adult children and spouses are often tasked with the decision about whether to move their loved one into a nursing home but some seniors go by their own choice. The sad reality is that not all nursing homes have well-meaning, well-trained, or responsible staff to care for their patients. An estimated two to four million senior citizens are abused every year at the hands of their caretakers.
Common Nursing Home Injuries Include:
- Physical Abuse
- Sexual Abuse
- Financial Exploitation
- Unsanitary Living Conditions
- Emotional Abuse
- Mal-nourishment & Dehydration
- Failure to Administer Medications Properly
If you suspect your loved one is a victim of nursing home abuse or neglect or if you have been victimized in a nursing home, the first priority is to get out of a dangerous situation. Next, report the abuse: to find your state’s number, go to the National Center on Elder Abuse website and click on “Suspect Abuse?”
Nursing home administrators may try to offer compensation and ask you or your loved one to sign documents releasing them from responsibility in the abuse. Even worse, they may attempt to charge your loved one for extra services needed to treat conditions caused by the abuse or obstruct efforts to move your loved one to a new facility. If you encounter any of these situations after being subjected to neglect or abuse, call an experienced nursing home abuse attorney right away. A statute of limitations exists on personal injury cases. A qualified nursing home injury attorney will often be able to achieve a satisfactory settlement out of court in situations with clear signs of abuse or neglect such as bed sores.
Who can be Held Responsible?
Nursing homes owe a basic “duty of care” to their residents but that doesn’t mean that the nursing home itself can always be held responsible for an accident, abuse, or neglect. Generally, a nursing home may be liable in cases where they failed to adequately train or supervise staff or there was a failure to provide the necessities of everyday living such as healthy food and medication. If your elder abuse attorney can prove that the nursing home was negligent, and that negligence played a role in the resident’s injury or abuse, then the nursing home may be held legally liable for all resulting damages.
In some cases, a piece of medical equipment malfunctions and causes injury; potentially creating a products liability case. In other cases, a third party may be held partially or fully responsible for an injury. For instance, if a resident experiences serious food poisoning, the vendor who supplied and prepared the food may be held liable for damages.
If your loved one has been injured as a result of abuse or neglect, you have enough to deal with. Let an experienced nursing home abuse attorney help you fight for justice. It is not uncommon to receive a settlement from the insurance company that is five to ten times larger with the help of a good lawyer. Call the caring elder abuse attorneys at Tario & Associates, P.S. in Bellingham, WA today for a FREE consultation! We have been representing residents of Whatcom County, Skagit County, Island County and Snohomish County since 1979. You will pay nothing up front and no attorney fees at all unless we recover damages for you!