Personal Injury Lawsuits for Nursing Home Residents
Helping your family member make the choice to move into an assisted living facility or nursing home is difficult. The move may cause a drastic change in your loved one’s daily routine, may indicate a decline in health and capacity, and may also create a hefty financial burden. Nonetheless, moving your loved one into a nursing home may be the best option for their continued care and safety.
When choosing a nursing home to take care of your family member, you will no doubt consider the quality of care your loved one will receive and choose a facility where you believe they will be well-cared for. Unfortunately, not all nursing home facilities are the peaceful and idyllic places they appear to be on their brochures. In fact, nursing homes residents can be particularly vulnerable to abuse and neglect, especially if they lack mental capacity.
Elder abuse can take many forms including physical, sexual, and emotional abuse. Nursing home residents may also experience neglect or be the victims of theft and fraud. Even though many nursing homes are model facilities with excellent employees, it is always a good idea to keep a close watch on your loved one’s care and make sure that you vocalize any concerns you have. Here are a few signs and symptoms of abuse to have in mind:
- Being withdrawn, depressed, or sad
- Being anxious, fearful, or upset
- Having torn, bloodied, or soiled clothing
- Missing clothing, personal belongings, or money
- Having bumps, bruises, and cuts
If you notice any of these symptoms, strongly consider talking to the management at your loved one’s nursing home. If the problems recur, consider finding an alternate living arrangement for your loved one, contacting your local law enforcement agency, and calling a qualified and competent attorney with experience in nursing home law.
It is important to remember that elder abuse and neglect is a crime. Not only is it a crime, but if your loved one has been the victim of abuse, he or she may be able to file a civil lawsuit to get monetary compensation for their injuries. Although money can never completely make up for injury and abuse, it can go a long way to helping your loved one find a new care facility and heal from the trauma they have experienced.
A nursing home lawyer Memphis, TN residents trust will be able to advise you regarding the strength of your loved one’s potential civil claim. A qualified attorney will also know the special rules affecting lawsuits filed by the elderly including whether your loved one will need to have a guardian appointed to represent their interests, and whether any settlement or award will need to be held in a trust.
In summary, no matter how confident you are in the nursing home you choose for your loved one, make sure that you vigilantly monitor for the signs of abuse and neglect. If you believe your loved one may have been the victim of abuse or neglect, say something. Make sure that your loved one stays safe and protected in their new home.
Thank you to our friends and contributors at Darrell Castle & Associates, PLLC for their insight into personal injury and nursing home abuse and neglect.