If you have a loved one who resides in a nursing home or assisted living facility and have concerns that your family member is being mistreated, neglected, or abused, you may need to take legal action to protect your loved one and demand justice.
With help from an experienced North Charleston personal injury lawyer at Shelly Leeke Law Firm, you can protect your loved ones and other nursing home residents and ensure the at-fault party is held accountable. Contact a North Charleston nursing home abuse lawyer for a free consultation today and find out more about how you can take steps to protect your family member.
Types of Nursing Home Abuse in North Charleston
It is not uncommon for the family members of those suffering from nursing home abuse to be unaware of the trauma their loved one is going through. Your nursing home abuse lawyer in North Charleston, SC, is here to help you understand the different forms nursing home abuse can take so you can better understand the signs and protect your loved one if you suspect they are being abused. Here is more about the different types of nursing home abuse your family member could be experiencing:
Sexual abuse is one of the most abhorrent types of nursing home abuse. Sexual abuse can include any type of unwanted physical touching or any other type of sexual contact where the patient is unable to give their consent either physically or cognitively. It is a serious offense that should never be taken lightly.
There have been reported incidents of nursing home staff, such as nurses or janitors, sexually abusing their patients. However, nursing home sexual abuse can also occur when the nursing home facility fails to properly monitor other residents who go on to sexually abuse, assault, or rape other nursing home residents. You deserve to be compensated for your injuries.
Physical abuse may be one of the most commonly thought of types of abuse in nursing homes. This is, in part, because physical abuse is often more easily identified through unexplained broken bones, unexplained burn injuries, concussions, bruising, being afraid of healthcare providers, and other signs of physical abuse. Many nursing home residents suffer physical abuse at the hands of their caretakers.
Neglect is also a type of nursing home abuse. It is up to the nursing home or assisted living facility to ensure all of its patients are properly cared for at all times. Any time patients are not fed properly, given adequate amounts of water, given their prescription medications, or fail to receive the proper hygiene, the nursing home staff and facility can be held accountable.
Emotional and Psychological Abuse
Emotional and psychological abuse are lesser known but can have a devastating impact on a nursing home resident. This can take the form of intimidation, threatening, name-calling, mocking, and other types of psychological distress. Your loved one may show signs of emotional abuse by withdrawing socially, skipping meals, overeating, developing substance abuse issues, engaging in self-harming behaviors, and showing visible signs of fear of their healthcare providers.
Financial abuse is one of the most common ways in which nursing home staff are taken advantage of. Financial abuse can involve a multitude of financial crimes, including theft, embezzlement, making changes to a nursing home resident’s power of attorney, writing checks without the nursing home resident’s consent, and other types of fraud. Fraud does not have to only occur related to finances, so be sure to keep a keen eye out for all forms.
Legal Options for Victims of Nursing Home Abuse
Nursing home residents who have been abused have recourse available. Let an attorney discuss them with you today. When you suspect your loved one has been abused or neglected in a nursing home, there may be multiple legal options available to you.
Contact the North Charleston Police Department
First, you may want to consider reporting your concerns to the North Charleston Police Department. The police may be able to open up a criminal investigation into the nursing home staff and facility’s actions. You might be the first in a long line of families who are brave enough to come forward and put a stop to repeated instances of nursing home abuse.
Report Concerns to the South Carolina Department of Social Services
However, reporting your concerns to the police is not the only way to demand justice. You may also be able to report nursing home abuse and neglect concerns to the South Carolina Department of Social Services, The Long-Term Care Ombudsman, who can then open up a formal investigation into the entire facility. Making these notifications can go a long way in winning your claim.
File an Insurance Claim or Civil Lawsuit
Your nursing home abuse attorney in North Charleston, SC, can also help you explore your opportunities for filing insurance and civil claims. You might have the right to file a medical malpractice lawsuit if your loved one’s healthcare providers were negligent in the patient’s care. You may also be able to file a personal injury lawsuit against all parties who share liability for the abuse and neglect your family member endured.
Our nursing home abuse attorneys will thoroughly investigate the details of your case and explore all opportunities for financial recovery to ensure your family member gets justice after the trauma they went through. Evidence is key in these cases. Call us today for a free consultation.
Recoverable Damages After Suffering Nursing Home Abuse
Our nursing home abuse lawyers are here to help you maximize the amount of compensation you are awarded. This can help to ensure the liable party is brought to justice as you may be surprised to learn there is a wide range of damages you may be able to recover in your nursing home abuse insurance claim or civil lawsuit. Some examples of the various damages that could be recovered include:
- Your family member’s physical pain and suffering
- The emotional distress your loved one went through
- Disfiguring injuries and skin scarring
- Money that was stolen from your family member
- Compensation for your family members reduced quality of life
- Your family member’s personal property damages
You can also recover compensation for the costs of your loved one’s medical expenses, treatment, and the costs of relocating to another new nursing home facility. When you have questions, call Shelly Leeke Law Firm. We offer free initial consultations.
Why Hire a Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer in North Charleston
Although we fully understand that it is in no way the victim’s fault, this type of abuse is often hard to talk about and even harder to get up the courage to fight against. That is why our legal team takes pride in working closely with our clients to bring them the justice and support they need in these very difficult situations, giving them a voice where they do not have one. We encourage you to work with a nursing home abuse lawyer in North Charleston for numerous reasons.
Let Us Gather the Evidence Needed
Often, in abuse cases, the evidence of what occurred is hard to find, especially if you have employees or even management who try to cover up what occurred. Yet, there are often ways to get additional information, including witness statements, documented proof of worker actions, and medical expert data to prove your case. Our trusted legal team goes to work for you to prove what occurred so we can provide you with the comprehensive legal support you need, including doing the following:
- Talk to the necessary witnesses
- Gather evidence from multiple resources
- Provide backup evidence to minimize any questioning that is done to you
At the same time, we work aggressively to protect your privacy. This is not a simple process, but we can do our part to ensure you are able to navigate it without the pain and heartache that often comes with it. We will fight vehemently for your right to compensation.
We Can Pursue the Data You Cannot
In many situations, there are obstacles to obtaining access to records that can prove what happened and who was abusing a person. Yet those records, such as employment records or logs of hours worked, are not always accessible. Our legal team has the experience necessary to find this type of information and evidence so that we can help you get answers to your questions.
We will pursue any and all evidence, even if it means going to court to get the data turned over. We know that you may not feel like there is anything out there to prove your case, but that is rarely the reality. Talk to us today about your case.
We Intercede with the Insurance Company
In many situations of nursing home abuse, you will have to deal with an insurance company that Is tasked with proving that you do not owe the compensation you do. In other words, they want to stop you. Our goal is to manage that interaction so that you are able to get the financial compensation owed to you at less risk.
We highly encourage you not to speak to the insurance company and instead allow our legal team to do this part of the work for you. The insurance company will not be on your side. There are many reasons for this, including the actions of some insurance companies:
- Insurance companies try to get you to admit some type of fault. They may try to get you to say that you were not abused but rather that you fell or otherwise hurt yourself.
- Many times, insurance companies will try to minimize injuries and losses. By getting you to make comments about your health and well-being right now, they may try to state that you are not suffering.
- Some insurance companies use abusive measures, including delaying compensation paid to clients as well as threatening individuals. You do not deserve to be treated like this.
The Administrators at the Nursing Home Are Never Working with You
There are some very good people who work as nursing home administrators. However, in situations where you need to file a claim for your losses in an abuse case, the nursing home administrator is not obligated to be open or fair to you. They also do not want to provide you with any details they are not legally required to provide.
The bottom line is that a person’s job is to minimize the losses they face, and you should remember the following:
- No matter how nice the administrator seems to be, they are not working for your best interests
- They may not be providing you with all of the information available to them – even if they claim they are
- They may not accept any claims you make and may try to aggressively limit your compensation through threatening action
We do not want you to settle your case for an unfair amount of money, meaning you go on suffering for years to come through no fault of your own. This is especially true when you are trying to protect the rights of a loved one who may not be able to protect themselves. We can help your elderly loved one with a claim.
We Know How Easy It Is to Put Your Case at Risk
Many times, a nursing home abuse attorney in North Charleston will share with you how hard it is to prove this type of case. That is not always because it is a case based on your word against the other person’s word. It is also because a lot of the burden of bringing this claim comes on your shoulders, and some of the most challenging situations in these cases include:
- Meet all expectations in filing documentation and legal paperwork
- Ensuring you do not let deadlines expire
- Ensuring all of your damages are clearly outlined and that you do not forget any
- Limiting any risk of claims made against you
- Avoid complications that can sometimes happen when you share too much information with the wrong parties
- Help you to obtain the compensation your case is actually worth
Our North Charleston nursing home abuse attorney wants to help and support you. When you set up a free consultation to discuss your case with you, you can learn a great deal about your rights from a team that has been trusted to provide exceptional legal services for years. You have a lot on the line and need a qualified attorney to guide you throughout the legal process, so be sure to review our client testimonials to learn more.
Contact a North Charleston Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Today
Nursing home neglect and abuse are unconscionable. When your loved one has been victimized, and you do not know where to turn for help, do not hesitate to contact a dedicated and compassionate North Charleston nursing home abuse attorney at Shelly Leeke Law Firm for help. Get started as soon as today when you complete our quick contact form or call our office for a free consultation.