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Nursing Home Abuse

Corpus Christi Nursing Home Abuse Lawyers

Representing Mistreated Seniors Across Texas

A nursing home is a facility that provides residential accommodations and healthcare, typically for the elderly. It should act as a place of safety and comfort for its residents, but not all nursing homes live up to this standard. Nursing home residents across the U.S. are subjected to abuse and mistreatment at an alarming rate, at an estimated 1 in 3 facilities throughout the country.

The Bandas Law Firm is committed to seeking justice for elderly patients and residents of nursing homes, residential care communities, and elder care centers in Nueces County and across Texas. Our team realizes the physical and psychological impact elder abuse can have on its victims and their families, and we strive to help our clients rebuild their lives while holding at-fault parties accountable.

Contact a Corpus Christi nursing home abuse attorney at (361) 238-2789 today to see how we can help you. Your initial consultation is free and confidential.

Types of Nursing Home Abuse

Nursing home abuse can take on different forms. It may include:

  • Physical abuse, which includes the use of physical force against an elderly person. Physical punishment, excessive restraints, hitting, burning, striking, or otherwise harming a victim are all examples of physical abuse.
  • Sexual abuse, which includes forced or non-consensual sexual contact or conduct. Unwanted or inappropriate touching, rape, or taking non-consensual nude pictures of an elderly person are examples of sexual abuse.
  • Emotional abuse, which involves inflicting anguish, pain, or psychological trauma through verbal assault, humiliation, isolation, threats, harassment, or other verbal or nonverbal means.
  • Financial abuse/exploitation, which can be defined as illegally or improperly using or obtaining an elderly person’s assets. Theft, coercion, forgery, and fraud are examples of financial abuse.

While nursing home staff have authority over patients that could easily be exploited, abuse by fellow nursing home residents may be just as common. It is a nursing home’s responsibility to provide a safe home for all patients, and if inadequate staffing or lax care standards in any way endanger your loved one, you may be able to file a lawsuit.

How Common Is Elder Abuse?

Unfortunately, elder abuse is widespread, especially in nursing homes. Between 2013 and 2016, over 1,000 nursing homes were cited by the federal government for failing to properly handle reports of sexual assault and rape. It’s likely many more cases went unreported during that time. However, sexual abuse is actually one of the less common types of abuse.

The most common types of elder abuse include:

  • Physical abuse (29%)
  • Resident to resident abuse (22%)
  • Psychological abuse (21%)

With around 1 in 3 homes cited for putting residents at risk, how can you be sure your loved one is safe? Elders often do not talk about their abuse for fear they will face retaliation. This is especially true if one of their caregivers is behind the mistreatment. Even if an elder is let alone long enough to make a report, they may worry people won’t believe them or, even if they do, won’t be able to make any actual changes.

Signs of Nursing Home Abuse

If you get the feeling something is off with your loved one, they may be suffering abuse. Any time someone goes through a sudden and significant change, it might be in response to trauma. Elder abuse may cause:

  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Signs of depression
  • Social withdrawal
  • Looking generally unclean
  • Having bruises, burns, scars, or bed sores
  • Fear of certain people

If you notice these or other symptoms, your loved one may be facing some sort of abuse or neglect. Contact our elder abuse attorneys in Corpus Christi to learn how you can take action and seek justice.

Injury or Death Caused By Neglect vs. Abuse

Unlike nursing home abuse or elder abuse, which can usually be defined as assault, battery, or physical, emotional, or sexual abuse, elder neglect can be harder to pinpoint. It is also a very serious and potentially fatal issue. In general, you can define elder neglect as the failure of any caregiver to fulfill their obligations concerning a senior person’s care.

Signs of nursing home neglect may include:

If you are concerned that your loved one is being neglected, do not hesitate to act. You may want to discuss the conditions in the facility with the facility’s manager, and even if you do so, seek advice from a lawyer who can help you to understand the laws, whether you have a case, what constitutes neglect, and how to go about seeking compensation.

Who Is Liable for Injuries Caused By Neglect?

If you suspect that your loved one has suffered health consequences from elder neglect or that their death was associated with neglect, you will undoubtedly want to know who should be held responsible.

In some cases, the fault may lie with the individual charged with caring for your elderly loved one, but in many cases, their own negligence may not have been their fault. For example, if they were not given proper training and/or instruction for supplying elderly patients with the best care possible, the fault may lie with the nursing home or institution.

Cases like this may include understaffing or negligent hiring, in which case background checks and other important research was not completed concerning the person being hired. Because the facility hired and employs the caregivers responsible for your loved one’s well-being, it may be “vicariously liable” for their actions. Thus, when looking to pursue compensation for your loved one’s pain and suffering and medical bills, you will most likely be suing the facility, not an employee.

If the person responsible for the neglect is a contractor or otherwise hired by a third party, they may also be liable for their actions. When you consult with an attorney at the Bandas Law Firm, be sure to bring all of the information you can gather on the case so we can give you the best advice for moving forward and pursuing action against the right parties.

Compensation for Nursing Home Malpractice

Nursing home malpractice involves the intentional or unintentional negligence and/or abuse of nursing home residents perpetrated by medical staff or other staff employed by the nursing home. If you or someone you love lives in a nursing home and has endured significant bedsores without treatment, the wrong type or dosage of medication, or any other kind of poor or negligent treatment, you should seek out the counsel of a nursing home abuse lawyer immediately.

If your lawyer effectively proves nursing home malpractice, you may be entitled to certain types of compensation, depending upon the severity of the injury and/or illness. You may pursue compensation for:

  • Medical bills
  • Disability
  • Pain and suffering
  • Punitive damages

Instead of attempting to deal with the nursing home’s management or filing a claim with the nursing home’s insurance company on your own, involve a legal professional. Without proper counsel, you are likely to get nowhere. Insurance companies have massive budgets for attorneys they keep on retainer in case of suits and claims such as yours. Without the aid of someone who knows the law, they will fight against you and twist the words of the law to their advantage.

Contact Bandas Law Firm for the Help You Need

If you have noticed signs of nursing home abuse or have received reports of abusive conduct from an elderly loved one at a nursing home, you need to move quickly. Do not hesitate to call 911 if your loved one is in grave and immediate danger and contact Bandas Law Firm to see what legal action can be taken.

Our Corpus Christi nursing home abuse lawyers are standing by to help. Call (361) 238-2789 today.

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