One of the most heartbreaking moments in a family’s life is when the time comes when they have to put their loved one in a nursing home. It is bad enough that they have to do this because no one in the family can take care of them with the needed care. Many require medical help that takes professional care, and sometimes situations arise where the suspicion of abuse is present. This situation can be a living nightmare, but a team of nursing home abuse lawyers is the answer needed to this type of problem. They know the laws of the Resident’s Bill of Rights, which the Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services strictly enforces.
What Are the Signs of Abuse of a Loved One in the Nursing Home?
There are many signs of abuse that loved ones in nursing homes can exhibit, and it is vital to be aware of them so that the appropriate action is taken. If you suspect abuse is happening, don’t wait to get help. The sooner you act, the better chance you have of stopping the abuse and getting your loved ones the care they need.
Some common signs of nursing home abuse include:
- Unexplained bruises or welts
- Cuts or lacerations
- Bedsores – often appearing on the buttocks, hips, back, and heels
- Sudden weight loss
- Malnutrition or dehydration
- Changes in behavior, such as becoming withdrawn or agitated
- Frequent infections
If you see any of these signs in your loved one, don’t hesitate to reach out for help. The nursing home abuse lawyers can help you get the answers and care your loved one needs.
Who Will the Attorneys Go After in a Nursing Home Abuse Case?
After investigating the signs of abuse and finding that nursing home abuse has occurred, the next step is to seek legal help. The first thing the attorneys will do is file a lawsuit against the nursing home. This is done to get compensation for the victim and their family. It is also done to bring about change in the nursing home so that this doesn’t happen to anyone else.
The lawsuit will name the nursing home and the employees who were responsible for the abuse. This can include the administrator, nurse, aides, doctor, or any other staff member involved.
What is the Process a Nursing Home Abuse Attorney Takes?
A nursing home abuse attorney will take the first step to file a claim with the state or federal government. Once the claim is filed, the attorney will work with the victim and their family to investigate the facts of the case. This may include interviewing witnesses, reviewing medical records, and speaking with experts. This investigation aims to gather enough evidence to prove that abuse occurred and that the responsible party knew or should have known about the abuse and failed to take action to stop it.
Once the investigation is complete, the nursing home abuse attorney will file a lawsuit against the responsible parties. The lawsuit will seek damages for the victim, including compensation for pain and suffering, medical expenses, and lost wages. In some cases, punitive damages are sought.
It is important to note that the statute of limitations for nursing home abuse cases can be very short, so it is vital to contact an attorney as soon as possible if you believe that your loved one has been abused.
How Is Nursing Home Abuse Proven?
It can be challenging to prove that nursing home abuse has occurred. This is especially true if the abuse is not physical in nature. There are, however, several ways that an attorney can use to prove that abuse has taken place:
Witness testimony: Witnesses can provide substantial evidence in a nursing home abuse case. They may be able to testify about what they saw or heard, which can help to show that abuse occurred.
Documentation: Medical records, social media posts, and other documentation can also be used to prove that nursing home abuse occurred.
Expert testimony: An attorney may also call experts to testify about the signs of elder abuse. This can help to show that the responsible party knew or should have known about the abuse and failed to take action.
The Investigation Process
You may wonder what happens during the investigation process once a claim has been filed for nursing home abuse. The last thing you want to do is put your loved one in more danger. So here’s what happens:
- The investigator will first conduct a preliminary review of the case to determine enough information to warrant an investigation. This includes reviewing medical records, police reports, and witness statements.
- If it is determined that an investigation is warranted, the investigator will then contact the nursing home and inform them of the allegations. The nursing home has the opportunity to respond to the claims.
- The investigator will also reach out to any witnesses and obtain their statements.
- The investigator will then gather any other available evidence, such as video footage or photographs.
- The investigator will also interview your loved one and any other victims involved in the case.
- Once all of the information has been gathered, the investigator will determine if there is enough evidence to substantiate abuse claims.
- If it is determined that there is enough evidence, the investigator will then present the case to the district attorney’s office.
- The district attorney’s office will then decide if they will file charges against the abuser or abusers.
Take Advantage of the Consultation
If you have any questions about the investigation process, please contact an experienced nursing home abuse lawyer who can help guide you through this difficult time.