Nursing Home Negligence No one ever expects a family member or friend to be the victim of abuse in a nursing home. However, incidents of abuse do occur every day and in many ways. Unfortunately, due to our rapidly aging population, abuse appears to be on the rise as the number of nursing home residents steadily increases. When someone you care about has been the victim of nursing home abuse, the problems can seem overwhelming Because of a nursing home resident’s limitations, family and friends are often called upon to ensure that a loved one or friend receives the care he or she is entitled. Nursing home negligence typically includes the failure to provide basic necessities such as water, protection from health and safety hazards, and general appropriate care. Negligence can result in injuries such as falls, broken hips, bedsores, malnutrition, dehydration, improper wound care, and other injuries which may result in severe medical complications and even death. Negligence can also include abuse such as physical, emotional, verbal, mental, sexual and/or exploitative (illegally taking, misusing, or concealing funds, property or assets) or a combination of the above. Nursing Home Abuse & Negligence Services The Stark & Stark nursing home negligence attorneys will fight to recover all the benefits you deserve. As a result of our experience in representing clients in nursing home negligence matters and through careful assessment and preparation, our nursing home negligence lawyers help victims and their families obtain cash settlements for injury, medical expenses, and pain and suffering. Sometimes these positive outcomes are achieved only by going to trial. However, in many cases our lawyers are able to obtain favorable settlements outside of the courtroom, making the experience less stressful for our clients. Frequently Asked Questions Here are some questions and answers to help you better understand what’s involved in product liability matters and important steps to follow to safeguard your safety and rights. Nursing Home Negligence If Someone I Care About Appears to Have Been Injured by Neglect, Abuse or Mistreatment, or I Have Witnessed Unexplained Injuries, Should I Contact an Attorney? YES! If so, you and your loved one may be entitled to monetary compensation for injuries stemming from the some of the following injuries or neglect. The definition of neglect is the failure to provide services necessary for a persons health and safety. This includes adequate food, water, shelter, clothing, supervision, hygiene, and health care. This broad definition covers a lot, but in general if there is a service that a nursing home is supposed to be providing, such as keeping the patient clean, well fed, or free from infections or wounds, and the nursing home is not providing that service adequately, it is nursing home neglect or abuse. What Are the Rights of Residents of New Jersey’s Nursing Homes? All New Jersey nursing homes must: Provide proper medical and nursing home care for all residents. Protect resident funds. Honor the privacy and confidentiality of each resident. Ensure that residents are free from physical restraints used for purposes other than to treat medical symptoms. Develop and implement written policies and procedures that prohibit mistreatment, neglect, and abuse of residents and misappropriation of resident property. Promote the quality of life for each resident. Protect the dignity of each resident. Encourage all residents to participate in the planning and in the decisions related to care and treatment and to make choices about significant aspects of his or her life in the facility. Provide each resident with the right to receive services with the reasonable accommodation of individual needs and preferences, without endangering the well being of the individual or other residents. Provide an ongoing program of activities designed to meet the interests and physical, mental and psychosocial well being of each resident. If any one of these rights is violated, New Jersey’s comprehensive law provides substantial remedies. What Are Common Signs of Nursing Home Abuse or Neglect? Most of the time, a family member will not actually witness the abuse or neglect, so the only way they notice it is by recognizing the signs of abuse or neglect. These include: Bedsores, also called decubitus ulcers or pressure ulcers Falls with injuries and unexplained injuries Rapid weight loss or malnutrition Cracked lips or dehydration Unsanitary conditions Inadequate staffing or poor quality of staff Overmedicating patient Sudden changes in patient behavior or prognosis Signs of sexual abuse, venereal diseases, or genital infections Staff refusing or delaying visits by family to see resident A transfer to hospital for infection, wound care, or malnutrition A transfer to wound care clinic for unexplained wounds Immediate unexplained death. How Much Does It Cost to Hire a Law Firm? Most law firms law firm work on either an hourly or on a contingency fee arrangement. Contingency means that, unlike an attorney that you pay per hour, the attorney gets paid when and if they recover money in your case and then take a percentage of what is settled upon, plus any money spent to pursue your case, such as court fees, testifying expert fees, fees to obtain medical records. How Long Does It Usually Take to Resolve (via Settlement or Trial) a Nursing Home Case? The Stark and Stark nursing home negligence team focuses strictly on nursing home cases, so we’re able to work far faster than most firms that handle a wider variety of case types. Most cases take between four months and two years to resolve. The difference in time depends a lot on whether the defendant wishes to settle quickly or wants to fight the charges. What Is a Nursing Home Neglect or Abuse Case Worth? Nursing home neglect cases range in value from zero to millions of dollars. That dramatic difference in value depends on a great number of factors that include, how clear the liability is, the extent of the harm, the venue of your case, how sympathetic the plaintiff is, the solvency of the defendant, whether you want to settle your case or want to see it through trial, along with other factors. We recommend calling our office and talking with one of our experienced nursing home negligence attorneys to find the best approach you’re your individual case. Contact The Stark & Stark Nursing Home Litigation Group will advise you of your loved one’s legal rights and will aggressively prosecute a claim whenever our investigation reveals any instances of abuse. Feel free to visit the Nursing Home Law Blog, which provides readers with timely information on nursing home and assisted living care.