Unfortunately, many individuals suffer injury as a result of abuse or neglect in nursing homes. With around 2 million cases of elder abuse reported every year, it’s important to be vigilant if you or a loved one resides in a nursing home. Take a look at the following steps to learn how you should go about pursuing a nursing home case and receiving the attention and compensation you deserve.
Alert your state’s Department of Health if you feel that the nursing home is responsible for your or your loved one’s injury. If the Department of Health notes any irregular findings, they will launch their own investigation called a survey. In the case that the surveyor finds the nursing home violated a statute or regulation, they will issue a citation. Then it’s up to the nursing home to make a plan of correction. All of this evidence will help your case as it proves the nursing home is at fault.
Make sure you document your injury. Some common cases of abuse or neglect result in head injuries or fractures, severe infections, late stage bed sores, or injuries at different stages of healing. Take some photos in order to document the progression of a wound or infection. The more physical proof you have, the better your case will hold up in court.
Gather any witnesses that can substantiate your claim. They can be especially helpful if you’ve suffered a trip and fall or a fall out of bed. It’s possible that a witness won’t be necessary if you can prove your claim through medical records, but it’s certainly a good idea to round up witness accounts if they are available.
Your attorney will interview the witnesses, and also try and reach out to nursing home staff if they are no longer employed by the nursing home. All of these interviews will not only help prove whether there was negligent care, but also any underlying reasons for the poor care such as understaffing at the nursing home.
Establish the plaintiff in the case. If the victim in the personal injury case is still alive and mentally capable, they can act as their own plaintiff. However, if the victim is not coherent or capable, they will need to have a guardian. This person will be appointed by the court to be responsible for the elderly person’s case as well as to serve as the plaintiff in court. If the resident is deceased and had a will, whomever is named the executor of the deceased resident’s estate will serve as the plaintiff. If there is no will then an estate must be raised and an administrator of the estate must be appointed to serve as the plaintiff and representative of the deceased resident’s estate. Your attorney will be able to help you with that process.
Consider Thistle Law For Your Nursing Home Case
If you suspect you or a loved one is a victim of this type of abuse or neglect, contact us today to discuss your nursing home case.