Nursing homes are supposed to be facilities that offer excellent care for elderly individuals. While the majority of them live up to the standard, many of them fail their residents, resulting in cases of neglect and abuse. You may want to contact a nursing home abuse attorney in Syracuse, NY if you suspect that your elderly loved one is a victim.
Abuse and neglect, while both harmful, are not the same. Abuse usually involves a purposeful act, whether on the part of the nursing home staff or its administration, with malicious intent. Negligence does not involve such ill intent, even though the actions may result in the same embarrassment and suffering, much like abuse.
For legal purposes, neglect and abuse are often used interchangeably given that the laws that punish perpetrators of such acts are almost the same.
Contacting a Lawyer to Handle Nursing Home Abuse
While it can be infuriating to know that your elderly loved one has suffered abuse in a nursing home, there are ways of seeking legal redress. You can file a lawsuit against such a nursing home. However, you need to fully understand all your legal options before proceeding. That’s where a nursing home abuse lawyer comes in. Such a lawyer will know how to proceed and what to look for as far as building a case is concerned.
Scenarios That Can Require Contacting a Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer
Many elderly people suffer numerous cases of abuse in nursing homes. These are some of the scenarios that will require you to contact a lawyer that focuses on handling such issues.
These scenarios include:
1) Negligent Supervision and Hiring
Caring for the elderly requires a competent staff to ensure that their daily needs are met. Unfortunately, many nursing homes have been known to cut corners when it comes to hiring their staff or supervising them properly. Usually, this involves hiring individuals without the necessary personality traits and qualifications to care for the elderly. In rare cases, some nursing homes have been known to hire violent offenders due to a lack of proper background checks. This can often lead to elderly residents suffering physical abuse or otherwise at the hands of such staff.
It’s also the nursing home’s duty to ensure that their staff are well-trained. When the nursing home fails to properly adhere to these responsibilities, neglect, and abuse can ensue. This is grounds for contacting a nursing home abuse lawyer.
2) Failure to Provide Proper Care
Nursing homes are expected to live up to certain standards as far as providing proper care is concerned. Failure to do this can often lead to grave mistakes, injuries, or death. A failure to provide proper care can manifest itself in the following ways:
– Medication errors
-Misdiagnosis of a medical condition
– Failure to properly manage a chronic medical condition
-Harassment of the elderly residents by the staff
-Financial or sexual exploitation of the elderly residents
– Neglect that results in the elderly patient developing bed sores
These are all manifestations of a lack of proper care, something an experienced nursing home abuse attorney can be able to work with to bring a lawsuit against such a facility.
3) Failure to Ensure Safety
In addition to caring for elderly residents, a nursing home has to ensure safety and security on its premises. This means that they have to do everything within their power to ensure these things within reason. Should an incident arise that threatens an elderly resident’s safety, the nursing home can find itself on the hook for a lawsuit. Situations that demonstrate a failure to ensure safety include:
– Residents being able to leave the premises unattended
– Unauthorized visitors being able to walk in and out of the nursing home
– Injuries like slips and falls due to wet surfaces
– Unchecked abuse of an elderly resident by another
As long as it can be demonstrated that a nursing home failed to take the necessary precautions, contacting an experienced lawyer is the best way of getting justice.
4) Failure to Cater to Basic Needs
Many elderly residents of nursing homes are frail, meaning they can’t do a lot of the things necessary for everyday living for themselves. These can include:
– Getting dressed
– Changing bed sheets
-Providing enough food or water
Not doing any of the above things properly constitutes a failure to cater to basic needs. Contact a nursing home abuse attorney immediately if you think your elderly loved one is the victim of such a failure to cater to basic needs.
Signs of Abuse in a Nursing Home
Abuse or neglect can manifest itself in many ways. Common signs include:
– Bed sores
– Bruises and injuries that do not seem to have any proper explanation
– Unsanitary conditions
– Great sadness or withdrawal of the elderly resident
-Erratic Behavior e.g flinching when touched or suddenly lashing out at someone
-A reluctance to speak in the presence of the nursing home staff
-Frequent illnesses among residents
– Unexplained deaths
How to Sue a Nursing Home
It all starts by observing the signs that could indicate abuse or neglect. Ideally, you want to confront the nursing home administration before taking any legal action. Assuming they provide an unsatisfactory explanation for the situation that caused you concern, proceed and contact a nursing home abuse attorney.
Such an attorney will then go about investigating every aspect of the alleged abuse to come up with the necessary evidence to build a case. This could involve questioning the other residents or some of the staff.
Who Can File a Lawsuit Against a Nursing Home?
An elderly resident of sound mind can sue a nursing home for any issues of abuse or neglect. However, many elderly people in such nursing homes are not in a position to do so given their mental deterioration. As such, any legal guardian can do that on their behalf. Such a legal guardian can include an adult son or daughter, a spouse, or any close relative.
Hire NPS Law Now!
You don’t have to watch your elderly loved one suffer abuse in a nursing home without taking action. Reach out to our experienced attorneys at NPS Law. We’ll investigate any allegations of abuse and neglect to help file a lawsuit on your behalf. Contact us at https://npslaws.com/welch-smith/practice-areas/nursing-home-abuse/.
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