The decision to move a loved one into a nursing home, assisted living facility, or other service is a big one. Families worry most about whether or not their loved one will be cared for in the best possible way. When you suspect or know your family member has been hurt, it becomes necessary to take action. In some situations, that includes seeking out the help of an experienced nursing home abuse attorney.
How Common Is Nursing Home Abuse in California?
The California Attorney General provides some stark information about elder abuse. The U.S. Census Bureau protection that the state’s population of elderly people would reach 6.4 million by 2025. And, the state believes that between 2010 and 2030, the number of people over the age of 65 that need long-term care or nursing home living will double. The Attorney General also reports that 13 percent of all complaints about long-term care services will involve gross neglect, exploitation, and abuse. That is more than twice the national rate.
The risks are very real that your loved one could suffer abuse even if you’ve taken the time to choose what you believe is the best facility in the region.
You Have Rights Protected Under California Law
One of the steps you need to take is to report their claims of abuse to the Attorney General’s office. When you do, a Facilities Enforcement Team will investigate and prosecute corporations that manage these facilities. The standardized care levels not met are treated seriously. The following aspects under this law will lead to criminal actions against the facility or individuals working in it:
- Failure to provide medical care (for either mental or physical needs)
- Falsification of patient charts
- Failure to provide hygiene
- Failure to staff the facility property
- Failing to prevent dehydration and malnutrition
If there is a dangerous situation occurring, we encourage you to contact the Attorney General immediately and potentially the local police department.
Compensation for Elder Abuse
When you meet with our legal team, we’ll want to learn as much as possible about what occurred and why this situation has developed. Our goal is to understand if nursing home abuse has happened. Some key reasons to take action include:
- There’s evidence or suspected physical abuse, such as bed sores, excessive use of restrains, over-medicating, falls, or physical assault.
- There’s evidence or suspected sexual abuse
- The presence of emotional abuse such as isolation, manipulation, or insults.
- Neglect, a very strong term, which means there is a failure to provide the services we’ve listed above.
- Financial abuse, including the signing of documents of any type, loss or use of property or funds, or any other use of an individual’s belongings without consent.
If these situations have occurred, you may be able to file a claim against the agency. The goal here is often twofold. Most individuals want to ensure that the location pays for the losses they’ve created by allowing this to occur. This often includes medical bills as well as loss of quality of life. In some situations, an individual’s death may occur as a result of the actions or inaction.
Second, there is the goal of protecting others present. We understand many men and women want to ensure this does not happen again. Taking legal action can help ensure there are better protections in place for others later.
Proving Your Case
We recommend never settling your case with a nursing home insurance company or other party until you have legal representation on your side. Like any other business, their goal is to minimize the damage to their reputation while also working to minimize financial losses from settlements. Having a trusted, experienced California attorney on your side for nursing home abuse claims is essential.
What Should You Do Now?
If you suspect nursing home abuse is occurring, we recommend taking action immediately. Allow the team at The Law Office of Daniel J. O’Neill to provide a free case review for you. We’re happy to speak to you about all of your legal options at that time. Contact us now to set up time for the care you need. We understand how important this is for you to get aggressive legal help right away.