The state of California has cracked down on nursing home violations over the past couple of years. In fact, the maximum fine that a nursing home could be penalized with for violating state regulations was a mere $150 back in 2014. Now that figure has skyrocketed to $15,000. This is truly a testament to the seriousness with which the state views nursing home violations.
Why the Sudden Increase in Fines?
There are approximately 7,500 facilities in the state that care for the elderly. A number of shocking reports have come out of these facilities in recent years, resulting in more attention from state legislators. In fact, most of the violations that result in fines deal with personal injury or even wrongful death. What can you do if an elderly loved one has been injured in a nursing home or you have evidence that a wrongful death has occurred?
Get Help and Be Heard
The worst thing to do is to accept nursing home neglect or abuse as a normal part of the operation of one of these places. Don’t let embarrassment hold you back from filing a report. Be sure to report neglect or abuse and get help from an attorney in doing so. You may be eligible for compensation in the case of personal injury or wrongful death, especially if the facility has violated state laws in the process.
The experienced personal injury and wrongful death attorneys at the Petrov Law Firm want to help you get justice for your elderly relatives. Call 619-344-0360 today to get started with your case.Read More
If a senior citizen is mistreated or neglected by a nursing home or even in a home care situation, this is a terrible abuse of power on the part of the caretakers. What usually occurs during an elder abuse lawsuit case in the state of California?
The fact in that unless the claim is frivolous or not backed up with much evidence, this type of suit is usually settled out of court. That is because such a case brings the wrong kind of attention to a facility or home care group, so no one really wants to go to trial.
On the other hand, going to court with such a case isn’t a bad thing. Most jury members are sympathetic toward the victims of this type of treatment. Therefore, a well-built case should be winnable. There needs to be proof that either the facility is understaffed or perhaps it lacks the ability to care for the basic needs of the sheer number of patients in the facility.
What Type of Evidence Makes a Good Case?
Be sure to have the senor’s medical records as well as maintaining a daily account of treatment. The state may very well do its own investigation into the facility if requested, and the results of such an investigation would be key. Finally, family members and others who visit the victim on a regular basis will be called upon to testify in regards to what they have seen go on at the facility.
If you believe that an elderly member of your family is being abused at a care facility, please contact us at the Petrov Law Firm for a consultation.Read More
Elder mistreatment, including abuse and neglect, is any intentional act that causes harm or risk of harm to a vulnerable elder by a caregiver or any person entrusted with ensuring the well-being of the elder. The intentional harmful action includes failure for a caregiver to satisfy an elder’s needs, whether or not the act was intended to be harmful.
A study prepared by the staff of the Special Investigations Division of the House Government Reform Committee in 2014 finds that reports of serious, physical, sexual and verbal abuse are numerous among nursing homes across the nation. Thirty percent of the over 5,000 nursing homes in the United States were cited for nearly 9,000 instances of abuse over a recent two-year period from 1999 to 2001. Problems included negligence and inadequate medical care resulting in untreated bedsores, malnutrition, and dehydration. Facilities were found to have poor sanitation and hygiene practices and many problems included preventable accidents, some serious enough to cause harm to the residents and put them in immediate jeopardy of death or serious injury.
Infliction of elder abuse is not limited to caregivers in assisted living facilities. It can include persons as close to the victim as their children or extended family members or their fellow nursing home residents. Some signs of abuse may include depression, confusion, unexplained weight loss, agitation, violence, lack of interest in activities, unexplained bruises, burns, or scars, messy, unkempt appearance, bedsores, or other preventable conditions.
If signs of abuse are observed, talk to the affected person to find out what is going on. Often times, if they are unable or unwilling to explain, it may be because they are traumatized, embarrassed, or simply unable to recall or verbalize what happened to them. Report your observations and findings to someone in charge of the facility or to other members of the family who can help out as soon as possible. Abuse or neglect can have a lasting or permanent effect on a person’s physical and mental health so it is best to remedy the situation as soon as it is discovered.Read More
If you are reading this, there is a 10% chance that you know someone who is suffering from elder abuse. Either at home or at a care center, by a family member or by a care professional, elder abuse is far more common than acceptable. And because the elderly aren’t always able to report the crime (or be taken seriously), the abuse continues.
Some signs of elder abuse are easy to see — bruising, welts, and cigarette burn marks are hard to miss. However, there are several forms of physical and mental abuse that require someone to ask a few additional, difficult questions. If you have a loved one in a care facility, or you suspect an at-home care worker is acting inappropriately, don’t hesitate to contact a personal injury lawyer for help.
The victim will always deny the problem. Because of fear, shame, and control tactics by the abusers, victims of elder abuse rarely volunteer information. You can try to “normalize” the topic. This means talking about rough handling and verbal abuse as if it’s not going to make anyone upset. The elderly often don’t want to “cause trouble”, but by normalizing the conversation you allow them to (more) freely discuss the problems.
Once you have the slightest hint of a problem with a care facility or care worker, you will need to contact a lawyer. The problem could be with a single individual or the entire facility operations. In either case, the facility will immediately become defensive and may hire a lawyer of their own.
Addressing problems at an elder care facility isn’t like making a complaint about cold food at a restaurant. The facility will have to face serious legal and financial ramification of their neglect. Elder abuse can mean civil lawsuits for neglect and criminal prosecution for the abusers. Don’t make these accusations without the help of a lawyer. The way in which you (and your lawyer) approach the accusation will often become a major determinant of how the case settles.Read More