How to Take Effective Legal Action Against Nursing Home Abuse
Nursing home abuse and elder mistreatment are shockingly overlooked even though they happen so often.
What example do we set for the youth when we neglect our elders? Someone you love who raised you could be facing the worst time of their life in these institutions. If you don’t help protect them now, you risk condemning them to an early death or irreparable trauma.
It’s time to put an end to your loved one’s suffering. All you have to do is hire a skillful Florence nursing home abuse lawyer to protect their rights.
At Mezrano, our nursing home abuse lawyers will help you get compensated by the abusive parties responsible for your loved one’s mistreatment. We’ll ensure your loved ones have a safe environment again and are treated with the dignity they deserve.
Understanding Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect
Here’s how the Administration of Aging defines elder abuse – “any knowing, intentional, or negligent act by a caregiver or any other person that causes harm or a serious risk of harm to a vulnerable adult.”
The fact that it happens in a facility specifically meant to look after the well-being of elders is what makes these cases so outrageous. It’s just as crazy as childcare facilities indulging in child abuse. But at least you’re likely to catch child abuse early since you’re regularly spending time with your child.
Elder abuse becomes an out-of-sight, out-of-mind issue. Most elders in nursing homes only get occasional visits from their families. So this abuse often goes on undetected for a long time leaving elders traumatized.
Here are some of the common types of exploitation faced by elders in Florence nursing homes:
- Physical abuse
- Emotional abuse
- Sexual abuse
- Financial exploitation
- The prevalence of elder abuse in nursing homes.
- The need for a thorough investigation due to common patterns of abuse.
Nearly 81 percent of staff have witnessed some form of emotional abuse at nursing homes. Family members often turn out to be culprits in the neglect and abuse too.
Physical elder abuse is also on the rise. The CDC reported over 600,000 cases of elders suffering non-fatal assaults.
The National Center on Elder Abuse reported that elders who suffered even modest abuse faced a 300 percent higher risk of death compared to those who were treated normally.
Let’s take a look at the main factors leading to elderly abuse in nursing homes:
- Greed – Nursing home staff may often manipulate elders to give up sensitive financial information or sign documents surrendering their assets. Stolen credit cards and forged checks are common occurrences of theft at nursing homes.
- Poor salary –The lack of financial incentives for nursing home staff creates a lack of motivation for employees. They end up neglecting their duties or trying to seek ways to take advantage of the elders around them.
- Inadequate training – Elderly patients may suffer from complex physical and mental health issues. Nursing home staff is rarely well-trained to handle these challenges, which ends up harming the residents.
- Lack of staff –Almost 30 percent of nursing homes reported staff shortages since 2022. The lack of budget and qualified candidates is creating a staffing crisis across nursing homes in Florence. Naturally, the residents don’t get the care and attention they need.
Mezrano: Specialists in Nursing Home Abuse Cases
Mezrano is a legal firm based in Florence with a proven track record of winning nursing home cases.
The knowledgeable Florence nursing home abuse lawyers at Mezrano will help you learn and understand your loved one’s rights and your best legal options. We can assist you in filing a complaint against the facility, and we will officially inform the nursing home of the abuse and neglect allegations.
We will work with medical experts who can testify about your loved one’s injuries and the accepted standard of care for a nursing facility and work with you to settle your loved one’s injuries.
We will aggressively pursue all negligence cases till your loved one gets the care and compensation they deserve.
Recognizing Signs and Symptoms of Neglect
Elders are often unable to express their suffering. It’s important to stay in touch with them to recognize any signs of neglect and abuse.
Here are some signs of emotional and physical abuse you must watch out for:
- Anxiety, agitation, confusion, or depression
- Weight loss due to malnutrition and dehydration
- Sleep disorders
- Broken bones
- Bruises and cuts
- Discrepancies in financial statements or missing money from the wallet
- Social withdrawal
- Incorrect/insufficient medication
Leveraging Technology for Nursing Home Abuse Cases
A successful case is just a story well told. Your lawyer needs to tell your story with clarity and empathy while highlighting exactly how your rights were violated. Mezrano uses cutting-edge visual presentation software to accomplish this. After all, most people are visual learners by nature.
This software can integrate documents, testimonies, transcripts, and visuals to weave a compelling narrative. It will help all parties involved in the case understand the legal violations suffered by the elderly victim.
Gathering evidence is only the first step of your case. Presenting it in a sensible and orderly fashion is the next step. You need to provide compelling presentations to back up your claim during mediation, settlement discussions, and trial hearings.
Compassionate and Resourceful Attorneys
There’s a great deal of family trauma involved in elderly abuse cases. And the elderly victims may be too helpless to reach out for help. You may feel helpless wondering how to guarantee the protection of your loved ones in nursing homes.
At Mezrano, our attorneys compassionately help your loved ones while firmly standing up to the ones who abused them. We’ll thoroughly investigate these abuse allegations and ensure your loved ones get the care and compensation they deserve.
Taking Legal Action for Nursing Home Abuse Victims
The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has established a bill of rights to protect nursing home residents from abuse. Any violation of these rights makes the facility liable for damages.
Your nursing home abuse attorney will pinpoint the exact violations to identify the liable parties. They’ll build your claim with all relevant evidence and negotiate a settlement that helps keep your loved ones safe and supported.
Mezrano’s team is always willing and available to guide your family through this legal journey. We’ll be happy to begin this journey with a free legal consultation to help you plan the next steps for your case.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I know if my loved one is being abused or neglected in a nursing home?
It’s important to frequently visit and stay in touch with your loved ones living in the nursing home. You’ll be able to spot the signs of abuse and neglect.
Here are some common signs of abuse and neglect you may notice:
- Anxiety, confusion, and depression
- Unexplained weight loss
- Marks on the wrist showing signs that they were physically restrained
- Broken bones
- Bruises and cuts
- Financial violations
- Social withdrawal
- Medication inconsistencies
What should I do if I suspect nursing home abuse?
If you notice risk factors and warning signs that your family member is experiencing abuse or neglect while living in a nursing home, it’s time to take action.
- Remove your loved one from the facility immediately
- Find alternative care – local adult protective service agencies can help
- Report the abuse or neglect to authorities
- Bring a legal claim against the responsible party
Why is it important to contact a lawyer immediately?
Proving the liability of abusive parties is always going to be the most challenging part of these cases. If you’ve identified any signs of neglect or abuse in a nursing home, you need to act quickly to take legal action. You need to treat it like an active investigation.
There’s a high chance valuable evidence becomes unavailable or gets covered up if you delay taking action. You don’t need to rush into a confrontation or take any hasty steps either. It can be counterproductive to your case. So get in touch with a lawyer immediately.
How can Mezrano assist in proving nursing home abuse claims?
Mezrano’s team of nursing home neglect lawyers will:
- Hire investigators
- Obtain resident’s medical records
- Request any police reports
- Hire expert nurses and doctors to testify
- Speak to the nursing home’s insurance company regarding a settlement
- Locate and interview potential witnesses
- File your case in court
- Represent your family at trial
What types of evidence are crucial in nursing home abuse cases?
Here are the essential pieces of evidence that will help build your nursing home abuse case:
- Medical reports and bills
- Financial records
- Nursing home documentation including injury reports, hiring records, staff logs, and resident charts
- Visual evidence of the neglect and abuse
- Eyewitness testimonies
- Surveillance footage
- Any personal logs of the abuse
What legal actions can be taken against nursing homes?
Nursing homes are obligated by law to provide a certain standard of care for all residents. You may file a claim for nursing home neglect, which would be a personal injury case. Depending on the type of injury, you can even file a criminal complaint if your loved one was physically abused. But for nursing home neglect cases, you would likely file a lawsuit for the injuries.
What are the potential outcomes of a nursing home abuse lawsuit?
Most nursing home abuse lawsuits end up being settled outside court. The victims are compensated based on the severity of injuries they suffered, and the treatment they had to undergo as a result of them.
You may have to take your case to trial if a fair settlement isn’t reached. A judge or jury will eventually award you a settlement after evaluating the case.