When a resident enters a nursing home, the expectation is that they will be treated with care and respect by the staff. Most of the time that is what happens, but there are exceptions where the residents are the victims of abuse and neglect. Those actions are disgraceful, but fortunately they do not have to go on unchecked. You may sue a nursing home that subjects its residents to neglectful or abusive behaviour.
When such neglect or mistreatment occurs it is important to act promptly to prevent further harm and to report any such issue to the home administrators and/or to the authorities.
You should then contact an attorney regarding any lawsuit you may wish to commence in respect of the abuse, neglect or mistreatment. Reports show that the average settlement in nursing home abuse cases is over $400,000.
There are different factors that affect the ultimate settlement in these cases, including the jurisdiction where the abuse or neglect occurred, the nature of the actual neglect or abuse (usually these relate to personal injury or wrongful death) and the precedent shown for similar cases.
The lawsuit can be brought forward by the family members of a resident or even a staff member of the nursing home. However, no matter who files the lawsuit, they will need the help of a nursing home abuse attorney who should be an attorney experienced in these matters.
Regardless of the causes of nursing home neglect, the attorney can hold the facility accountable, compensate the resident for the damages they suffered, and help to ensure that the nursing home does not mistreat or neglect residents in the future. So if you know about nursing home neglect, then contact a nursing home abuse lawyer as soon as you can.
The Types Of Behaviour That Can Lead To a Lawsuit
Accidents, intentional acts, and systemic failures are all grounds for a lawsuit against a nursing home. In all of those cases, the neglect could have been prevented, which is why the nursing home can be held liable in any consequent lawsuit.
The actual types of neglect or negligence are many and varied, including –
Poor Hiring Practices – If a staff member is underqualified or undertrained and they end up hurting a resident, then the nursing home can be sued. The same goes for when a staff member intentionally neglects or abuses a resident. The need for proper hiring and training of staff is paramount and is also a frequent factor behind nursing home neglect and abuse claims.
Unsafe Premises – The nursing home should be free of hazards that can hurt the residents. That is why the facility can be held accountable if they fail to provide a safe environment for their residents.
Poor Supervision – This is when a staff member fails to properly supervise or look out for a resident who injures themself in some way. This may also include failure to move a resident with the result that bedsores occur, or it may involve failure to provide proper water, food or shelter.
Resident Neglect – If a staff member neglects to care for a resident, then that counts as mistreatment and the nursing home could be held liable for anything that happens to that resident.
Inadequate Medical Treatment – A nursing home required to provide a certain standard of medical care. If the facility falls below that standard and a resident gets hurt as a result, then the facility could be sued for medical malpractice.
Inadequate Health and Safety Practices – The nursing home is obligated to keep the residents’ rooms and in all common areas clean and sanitary. The nursing home can be sued if their services fall below the required standards.
Financial exploitation – This is where there have been financial misdeeds like forged signatures, unauthorized withdrawls and the like.
What To Do When You Discover Nursing Home Neglect
The first thing that should be done is to report the abuse to the people in charge of the facility or to the authorities. The facility should address the problem and stop the abuse or neglect from occurring, but if they do not, then the person who discovered the abuse will need to file a lawsuit against the facility.
They will need the help of a nursing home abuse lawyer to help them as the process can become complicated and may result in some stringent opposition to the likelihood of any such claim, which can be countered with an attorney experienced in this area of practice.
Contact a Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer If You Discover Neglect
Whether you are a family member of a resident or a whistleblower who works at a nursing home, you should contact an attorney to help you. Before you do so you should contact the Illinois Department of Health’s Nursing Home Complaint Hotline at 1-800-252-4343 and then contact the Rooth Law Firm.
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