The decision to put a loved one in a nursing home is never an easy one. Unfortunately, however, sometimes it is necessary to ensure that they get the care that they need. With age or illness, people often lose the ability to care for themselves. Putting them in a place where there are qualified professionals available who can give them support and medical attention is one of the best things that you can do for them.
When you check someone into a nursing home, it is only natural to expect that they will be taken care of by professionals and treated with respect. Sadly, that isn’t always the case. Nursing home abuse and neglect are far more common than you might think.
There are examples of abuse from nursing homes throughout the country. From caretakers who neglect their patients’ needs to people who are outright abusive to the elderly people that they work with, new reports of problems with nursing home care are reported every single day.
Unfortunately, however, many cases of abuse go unreported. Elderly patients are often unable to speak up for themselves. As a result, they have no way to protect themselves against the people who are mistreating them.
One of your roles as a family member or friend is to watch for signs of abuse. Some of the most common signs of abuse or neglect include the following:
* Unsanitary living conditions
* Unexplained bruises
* Broken bones
* Changes in personality
* Soiled clothing
If you suspect that a loved one in a nursing home is being abused or neglected, it is important to seek help right away. Because they can’t speak up for themselves, you need to be their voice. Even if an investigation finds that no abuse or neglect is going on, it is better to err on the side of caution rather than staying silent and allowing the problem to continue.
If abuse or neglect is discovered, it is important to hold the person or people responsible accountable. In most cases, that means working with a lawyer to bring a lawsuit against the individual or the facility. By working with a New York nursing home negligence law firm, you can get the justice that your loved one deserves.
Of course, you need to make sure that you hire the right law firm. Here are some factors to keep in mind when deciding which firm to use:
1. Experience. Ideally, the law firm that you hire should focus primarily on nursing home abuse and neglect cases. That way, they will have in-depth knowledge of the laws surrounding these issues, which may help them put together a stronger case. Don’t settle for a lawyer who only works on nursing home-related cases on the side. Instead, choose a firm that makes these types of cases their primary focus.
2. Track record. If possible, check out some of the past cases that any law firms you are considering have worked on. Find out what the outcomes were in those cases. Did the lawyers help their clients get a successful verdict or settlement? A solid track record of success is usually a good indication that a particular law firm knows what they are doing and can help you win your case.
3. Good communication. You need to work with a law firm that communicates clearly with you so that you understand what is happening at every stage of your case. They should also spend time listening to your questions and concerns. After all, the relationship between you and your lawyer is not a one-way street. Both of you need to be informed and up-to-date with all of the latest information.
Consider setting up an initial consultation with a law firm before agreeing to hire them. This should give you a sense of how well they communicate and how seriously they take your case.
4. Cost. Unless you have unlimited funds, the cost of legal representation will have to weigh into your decision. In many cases, attorneys will take on these cases on a contingency basis. That means that you don’t have to pay them out of your pocket. Instead, they will take a percentage of the money that is recovered in the case as their payment. This can be a good option if you don’t have a lot of cash on hand but still, want to make sure that justice is done.
A New York nursing home negligence law firm can help you pursue legal action against a caregiver or nursing home in cases of neglect or abuse. It is important that anyone who participates in this deplorable activity is held responsible for their actions. Otherwise, they will most likely continue to abuse or neglect other patients who are put into their care.