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Nursing Home Abuse: When Should You Contact an Attorney?

December 2, 2014 | Category: Nursing Home Neglect/Abuse | Share

Nursing home abuse happens more often than many people realize. On a routine basis, Florida families and individuals throughout the country place their elderly loved ones in the care of assisted living facilities and nursing homes. However, Ft. Myers personal injury attorneys like Randall Spivey have said that "nursing home neglect and abuse is becoming a serious problem in Florida."

It is often quite difficult to detect nursing home abuse, which makes it an issue that is very hard to deal with in many instances. This is because the elderly individuals may be placed in facilities far away from their family members, thus making it difficult for those family members to observe the care their loved one is receiving on a routine basis. By the time a family member does suspect that abuse is taking place, it is typically well after the abuse has been occurring for a long period of time. Nevertheless, no matter when the abuse is discovered, it is imperative for individuals to report it as soon as possible and contact a personal injury attorney to help them ensure their loved ones' rights are protected.

The Rights of Nursing Home Residents

Most Ft. Myers personal injury attorneys know that nursing home residents have certain rights under state law. For example, individuals in nursing homes have a right to be treated with dignity and fairness. They are also entitled to a stay that is free from verbal, mental, sexual and physical abuse.

Residents should also expect to receive reasonable access to legal and health services, and they also have the right to privacy during their stay. Individuals in nursing homes should not be subjected to corporal punishment, physical and/or chemical restraints or seclusion.

Contact an Attorney if You Suspect Nursing Home Abuse

First and foremost, if the abuse discovered requires medical assistance, the person discovering the abuse should immediately take steps to get their loved one the treatment needed from a doctor or through an emergency room visit. If the discovered abuse is of a criminal nature, law enforcement should be contacted as soon as possible so an investigation can take place. Additionally, the discovering party should consider contacting an attorney to discuss their loved one's legal options.

Once an individual makes an abuse complaint, an investigation will likely begin, which will include interviews with the elderly resident, his or her family members and nursing home management and staff. If the allegations are found to be true, the elderly individual will receive assistance from adult protective services to try and remedy the situation. However, more often than not, the victim and his or her family may choose to pursue legal action against the home.

Anyone who believes a loved one has been subjected to abuse is encouraged to seek legal guidance from a knowledgeable attorney. An attorney can properly advise individuals on whether they have a viable case to pursue based on the facts. If the attorney determines that a case exists, he or she will begin the process to ensure that the harmed individual obtains the justice he or she deserves. Contact the Ft. Myers personal injury attorneys at the Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A. today for help.

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Fort Myers, Florida 33912

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