Atlanta Nursing Home Accident Attorney

Nursing homes are designed to take care of the elderly members of our community, as well as provide a safe and comfortable place for our loved ones to live out their golden years. Sadly, some of our loved ones are not treated with the respect and dignity that they deserve. Abuse in nursing homes often goes unnoticed because it comes in many different and subtle forms. It can be heartbreaking when you begin to realize signs of abuse. If you or a loved one has fallen victim to nursing home abuse, you may have cause for a claim against the responsible party or even the institution itself. We know how special your loved ones are to you and your family. We understand that the elderly deserve peace and comfort, and we are committed to seeing that you and your family get the settlement they deserve.

LET KEVIN PATRICK LAW HELP YOU THROUGH THIS

When you have discovered that your loved one has been abused in a nursing home, you need help from a skilled and compassionate attorney. You can count on Kevin Patrick Law to be by your side throughout this difficult period.

  • The State Bar of Georgia has given Kevin several awards for his service to the profession and the public. This includes the Ethics & Professionalism Award for 2018 and the Outstanding Service Award for 2019.
  • Kevin Patrick focuses solely on personal injury law, giving him a deep insight into the legalities surrounding a nursing home abuse case.
  • You will not have to worry about paying a dime while your case is ongoing. We take nursing home abuse cases on a contingency fee basis, meaning you only owe legal fees after we secured the compensation you deserve.

TYPES OF NURSING HOME ABUSE AND NEGLECT

If you or someone you love is the resident of a nursing home or extended care facility, then you should familiarize yourself with common types of nursing home abuse and negligence. Knowledge is power when protecting your loved ones. We are going to highlight for you five of the most common types of nursing home claims:

  • Physical Abuse: Physical abuse of an elderly resident of a nursing home involves the actual injuries (and even, too, the threat of imminent physical harm). There are many different types of abuse, unfortunately, that can be inflicted by supposed caregivers. For example, extended care abuse can involve hitting, grabbing, and pushing an elderly resident. Other types of abuse at a nursing home include the use of excessive restraints, such as tying a person to a wheelchair or bedframe. Along with these types of physical abuse, caregivers can also inflict abuse by denying a resident vital medication, as well as food and water.
  • Psychological Abuse: A caregiver at a nursing home may intentionally cause emotional distress to an elderly resident through verbal or non-verbal actions. Emotional abuse takes many different forms. Some common types of psychological abuse at nursing homes can include a caregiver taunting an elderly resident by taking away the resident’s food or pulling-off a resident’s blankets. Other forms of extended care abuse include the threat of physical violence, such as lurching towards a resident with a broomstick. Again, emotional and psychological abuse at assisted living facilities can be very difficult to uncover without proper knowledge and vigilance.
  • Neglect: Another common and very unfortunate form of nursing home abuse centers on the neglect of elderly residents by a nursing home’s staff. Nursing homes have a duty to provide for a resident’s basic needs, such as food, clothing, and shelter. Along with these basic needs, an elderly resident should expect to be safe from predators, like petty thieves and even hardened criminals. You pay the nursing home to take care of your loved one. Neglect, unfortunately, can be a difficult form of abuse to spot because there are not always obvious physical signs so it’s important to be very vigilant at nursing homes.
  • Improper Medication: Many assisted living residents are taking medication for various ailments and conditions to help with associated memory loss and physical discomfort. These drugs are important to an elderly resident’s well-being and overall health. Nursing homes are required to monitor a resident’s use of prescription medication and supervise the caregivers tasked with dispensing the medication. For example, medications must be properly stored and labeled to avoid giving an incorrect medication to a resident. The slightest mistake can have life-altering consequences. Even more so, the staff at nursing homes simply cannot overmedicate an elderly resident!
  • Financial Abuse: Many elderly residents at nursing homes have worked countless decades to save for their final years. A resident’s funds should be used for their care and support as opposed to the financial gain of ill-intentioned caregivers. There are several forms of financial abuse, like the theft of precious family heirlooms and other personal property, or the actual taking of a resident’s hard-earned money. A quick tip: Be wary of identity theft at nursing homes and make sure that all of your elderly family member’s forms of identification are safely stored and are not accessible to everyone at the assisted living facility.

PHYSICAL SIGNS OF NURSING HOME ABUSE AND NEGLECT

While there are some physical signs that we all can clearly recognize as abuse, we also want to share with you a detailed, but certainly not exhaustive, list of other signs of neglect at assisted living facilities:

  • Mysterious cuts, burns, and scrapes
  • Presence of bedsores (pressure ulcers)
  • Lingering infections and flu-like symptoms
  • Unexplained loss of hair and teeth
  • Permeation of foul odors from urine and feces
  • Dirty clothes, bath towels, and bedsheets
  • General unresponsiveness from medications
  • Financial transactions to unknown recipients
  • Overall lack of enthusiasm and will-power
  • Fright from seeing certain caregivers or residents
  • Execution of legal documents without notice
  • Violent outbursts and other strange activity

As a member of the elderly relatives’ family or as a close friend, you are in the best position to determine whether there may be abuse toward the resident. A good preventative measure is unannounced walk-ins to the assisted living facilities. Don’t be afraid to trust your instincts and always share your concerns with the supervisors at the nursing home. A detailed log of changes in an elderly resident’s behavior is critical to a successful nursing home negligence case.

HOW COMMON IS NURSING HOME ABUSE?

According to the National Council on Aging (NCOA), nursing home abuse is common and dramatically underreported. They claim that:

  • Approximately 1 in 10 Americans aged 60 and older have experienced some kind of elder abuse.
  • Many estimates say as many as 5,000,000 elderly Americans are abused each year.
  • Studies show that only one out of every 14 cases of elder abuse are reported to authorities.

Abusers of the elderly are both men and women. Commonly, perpetrators of elderly abuse are family members. However, many elderly abusers are nursing home employees and volunteers.

WHO CAN BE HELD LIABLE IN A NURSING HOME ABUSE CASE?

There may be more than one liable party in nursing home abuse cases. When nursing home abuse is reported, it may quickly become apparent that one employee at a nursing home is responsible for abusing your loved one.

However, there may be other parties that hold some responsibility. If other employees in a nursing home knew about the abuse of your loved one, they may also be held liable. The nursing home facility itself may be liable for these incidents, particularly if they failed to follow standard hiring practices or made attempts to cover up abuses that took place under their watch.

ADVANCING A NURSING HOME ABUSE CARE

Nursing home negligence cases require specialized legal skills and expertise. These cases are not to be taken lightly by attorneys; instead, there are many important steps to investigate and prosecute an assisted living facility:

  • Work with Medical Doctors and Other Experts: Nursing home abuse cases often lead to emergency room treatment and extended hospitalizations or rehabilitation stays for residents. We always work with the physicians and other professions to evaluate the full scope of treatment, which includes both physical and emotional care, for victims of nursing home abuse.
  • Detailed Review of Records: Like other businesses, nursing homes are required to maintain detailed records. These records range from call-logs, prescription refills, and other appointments for an elderly resident. If a resident is non-verbal or has difficulty communicating about the assisted living negligence, then these records will help to paint a clear time-line for the abuse.
  • Interviewing Former Employees: Oftentimes former employees are critical for exposing systemic nursing home and elder abuse. They have the “insider knowledge” about the poor and unethical practices by caregivers and their supervisors at nursing homes.
  • Obtain Photographs and Surveillance Footage: A picture is truly worth a million words! A picture of a tragic situation will help to convey the magnitude of the nursing home negligence to a jury. What is more, surveillance footage, such as a camera from an assisted living center, can be used in the discovery of a fabricated story by a nursing home employee’s care of an elderly resident.

WE WILL HELP YOU SECURE THE COMPENSATION YOU DESERVE

If you have discovered that your loved one has been abused in a nursing home, seek legal assistance as soon as possible. At Kevin Patrick Law, we are going to get to work on your case immediately. Our goal is to investigate what happened so we can secure the compensation you and your loved one deserve. This can include:

  • Compensation for your loved one’s medical expenses
  • Loss of enjoyment of life damages
  • Pain and suffering damages
  • The cost to stay at the facility
  • Coverage to relocate to a new facility
  • Possible punitive damages against the negligent employees or facility

If your loved one has died in a nursing home and you suspect abuse or neglect by employees is to blame, you may be able to recover compensation through a wrongful death lawsuit. Kevin Patrick Law can also help you with these cases. It is vital that abusers are held accountable for their actions so that nobody else has to go through what you and your loved ones are going through now.

All you and your family wanted was the confidence in knowing that your loved one was safe and being taken care of every day. Your elderly family members and friends are deeply important to us. We will make sure they are protected from nursing home negligence and abuse. Their lives are precious to us, and we will do our very best for you and your family and friends. If you need an Atlanta nursing home abuse attorney, you can contact us for a free consultation by clicking here or by calling (404) 566-5880.