Justice For Our Loved Ones
I know how difficult the choice is: an elderly relative is unable to care for himself or herself, and your family has made the decision to place them in a nursing home or an assisted living facility. As hard as the choice was to make, you assumed that your loved one would be safe there—that is, after all, the reason they were to live in the facility in the first place.
So what are you to make of the phone call you received informing you that your beloved relative was seriously injured? What are you supposed to think when the nursing home staff refuses to take responsibility for the injury of your loved one? You might feel incredibly angry, as you should. You may also feel confused and unsure of where to go next—but that’s where we come in.
Virginia Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect Lawyers
Our personal injury law firm specializes in handling nursing home injury and abuse cases. Nursing home staff are going to try to absolve themselves of the responsibility they have to protect your family members from harm and injury; do not give them the luxury.
If your loved one was injured due to a nursing home staff’s neglect and abdication of their ironclad responsibility to protect and care for your family, then they deserve to pay. You placed your trust in them, and they betrayed that trust; they should not be allowed to get away with it.
When Nursing Homes are Liable
Nursing homes can be held legally responsible for the damages their employees, policies or procedures cause. Damages available in such claims can include medical bills, disability, pain and suffering, and disfigurement. Virginia also allows for punitive damages, which are awarded when abuse or neglect is especially reprehensible. Punitive damages are designed to defer the defendant from ever engaging in similar conduct again.
Grounds for a nursing home lawsuit may include:
- Negligent Hiring Practices – Nursing homes owe it to their patients to perform extensive background check and hire only the most qualified professionals. When a facility fails to do their due diligence, they risk exposing patients to employees of questionable backgrounds. Should abuse or neglect occur as a result of negligent hiring practices, the nursing home can be sued.
- Understaffing Policies – Understaffed nursing homes inevitably lead to neglect. A low staff-to-patient ratio causes more work for the employees without compensating them fairly for the increased workload. This leads to burnout and compassion fatigue. Should a resident suffer injuries or die as a result of understaffing, the facility can be held liable.
- Lack of Training – Nursing home employees should be thoroughly trained in the procedures necessary for the daily operation of their facility. When training is incomplete, accidents can occur. Inadequate training can lead to injuries and fatalities, and ultimately, a lawsuit.
These are just some of the most common causes of nursing home lawsuits, but it is far from a comprehensive list. If you believe you have reason to file a lawsuit, it’s best to consult with an attorney about your options before proceeding.
Forms of Nursing Home Negligence
- Falls in Nursing Homes – Nursing home staff have a responsibility to conduct a fall-risk assessment, which will aid in the reduction and prevention of patients falling. Negligence may occur when a patient has a pattern of falls and there is a clear failure on the part of the staff to apply any sort of accommodation to prevent future falls.
- Bed Sores or Pressure Sores – Bed sores are a major problem for patients who are confined to a bed or a wheelchair. They can be prevented by moving the patient frequently, changing bedding, and keeping the skin clean and dry. Untreated bedsores can become seriously infected or gangrenous.
- Medication Errors – Medication errors occur when the patient has been prescribed the wrong medication or given the wrong dosage by a staff member at the facility. The patient may begin to experience an adverse reaction to the medication, which could quickly become fatal.
- Wrongful Death – A wrongful death can occur when the death of a patient has occurred due to the nursing home facility’s negligence. Common reasons for wrongful death include:
- death due to the lack of accommodation for a patient known for falling,
- death from infection or serious complication from bedsores,
- medication errors,
- and abuse
Statute of Limitations (Deadlines) For Virginia Claims
Under Virginia law, it is necessary to file a lawsuit within strict deadlines imposed by law. In many cases, Virginia provides for a two-year deadline also known as a Statute of Limitations. However, special circumstances apply depending on the situation. Once you have missed this deadline, you will no longer be able to file a claim.
Find the Best Virginia Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer for You
Immediate investigation often makes the difference between winning and losing a case. The Law Offices of Richard J. Serpe P.C. conducts immediate investigations to identify crucial witnesses and preserve important evidence. If you’d like to speak with our attorneys about your situation, contact us today at 877-544-5323.