Elder abuse is hard to quantify. It is greatly underreported and much of it goes undetected. However, some research suggests that 10% of older adults have experienced abuse, including sexual, physical, and psychological abuse. Much of this abuse is perpetrated by family members, but nursing home abuse is also a significant problem.
If your loved one is in a nursing home and you suspect that their caregivers are abusing them, you may want to consider contacting an attorney. Read on to learn more about finding an effective nursing home abuse lawyer.
If you suspect that your loved one is being abused by their caregivers, document anything that leads you to suspect this. Signs to look for include:
- Bruises and unexplained wounds
- Malnutrition and dehydration
- Bruising around the genitals
- Unexplained infections or illnesses
- Physical discomfort
- Depression and withdrawal
If your loved one has unexplained injuries, be sure to document them and take pictures if possible. Keep a detailed record of everything that is happening. Try to visit your loved one at different times to see how they are being cared for on different shifts.
Your attorney will also investigate the abuse, but if you have this information, you will make their job easier and help them know where to start.
Look for Attorneys Who Specialize in Nursing Home Abuse
If you suspect abuse and have documentation, research attorneys who specialize in nursing home abuse. There are many general practice firms who may take on these cases, but not all personal injury cases are created equal. An experienced abuse attorney understands the state laws and standards pertaining to nursing homes and assisted living facilities and knows how to negotiate with nursing home and their insurance companies.
Consider Their Track Record
Not only do you want an experienced nursing home abuse lawyer, but you also want one who is successful at winning their cases. When you consider a potential attorney, research their track record and the settlements they’ve been able to win for their clients.
An attorney with trial experience is also important, as your case may go to trial if your insurance company does not offer a settlement that you believe is fair. Ask your attorney about their trial experience and how many cases they’ve taken to trial.
What to Expect from an Abuse Lawyer
When you hire a nursing home abuse lawyer, you can expect that they will fully investigate your allegations of abuse. They’ll use your documentation as a start and then investigate further. They may interview witnesses, including current and former employees of the nursing home or assisted living facility. They’ll also review any records that the nursing home as well as medical records and any other relevant documents.
Once your lawyer has established your case, they will communicate with the nursing home on your behalf and attempt to settle the case or file an administrative complaint. If this is unsuccessful, they may file a lawsuit and negotiate with the insurance company or take the case trial if you cannot settle.
Do You Need a Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer?
if you suspect that your loved one is being mistreated, don’t delay in contact an abuse lawyer. If an older adult is in a facility that is abusing them, you need to protect them and other residents.
Contact us today for a free case evaluation. Our attorneys are experienced in personal injury cases, including nursing home abuse cases.