Deciding to go into a nursing home or sending a relative there for care is never an easy decision. It comes with a lot of challenges, like giving up your independence. For many, it’s a lifeline when they need it the most. Having nursing care and others you can fellowship with is a great resource for many who need it. There’s no shame in needing the help of a nursing home, but not everything is roses and care.
There have been many cases in which a nursing home failed to do their job properly. Of course, this isn’t all nursing homes, but there are stories of neglectful and even abusive doctors, nurses and staff, among other issues. If you’re in a home that did you wrong or your family member told you of any type of abuse they received, then you must do what you can to collect all the evidence you possibly can and sit down with a personal injury lawyer.
In these situations, the neglectful and/or abusive behavior will cause pain, suffering, and even loss. That’s why it’s important to gather as much evidence for the problems as possible. That includes other types of information, like what was lost or the extra care needed to take care of the problem. Here’s a quick list of some of the damages one might expect:
- Medical expenses
- Past expenses, like expenses for going to a doctor, lab fees, prescription costs, and hospital stays.
- Any future expenses you might be able to foresee.
- Physical and bodily harm caused by being immobilized too long.
- Any pain and suffering as a result of the abuse, including injuries. This might also include types of phantom pain others can’t see.
- Mental and/or psychological suffering.
- Issues caused by lack of sleep.
- Potential future impairment.
Mental Suffering from Injuries
When abuse and neglect happen, it’s not just physical pain that becomes an issue. If you sue a nursing home, you can receive damages for mental pain and anguish as a result of the abuse they suffered. Mental pain can seriously impair one’s life significantly and add to their suffering and bodily pain. That’s why it’s important not to ignore someone’s mental anguish when dealing with abuse and neglect. It can be hard to recover from.
Victims of abuse can suffer from a lot of fear and anxiety as well. They might fear certain consequences for the injuries they sustained while help was coming. They might fear how much worse things could’ve gotten for them. They might’ve even feared for their life, thinking they would die in that situation, which is a completely horrifying thought. Other types of thoughts that cause pain could be thinking they’d need surgery, future vulnerability, and even a bit of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
Another big problem that occurs as a result of neglect and abuse is bodily disfigurement. This can be any number of things, from hair loss to scars and even amputation. Other types of injuries can change a victim’s appearance or other functions within their body. Senior citizens deserve respect and care, so if someone disfigures them, they should feel the full brunt of the law. Making a complaint against a nursing home is the least one can do to gain justice.
No Longer Able to Enjoy Life
Just because someone moves into a nursing home doesn’t mean their life is over or they have no way to enjoy things. There are plenty of ways seniors enjoy their golden years. In most cases, nursing homes do a good job of providing resources, outings, and other types of fun for their residents. Keeping them active and healthy is a great way to prolong their life, but when abuse and/or neglect happens, it can change everything.
If you’re seeking financial damages from a nursing home, you can receive extra money simply because the nursing home interfered with the victim’s ability to enjoy life. Even the things they were once able to do while healthy may be impacted. Once you get to a certain age, all it takes is a single traumatic incident to really send their health declining to a point that it’s nearly impossible to recover.
By harming a senior citizen, we’re not just talking about playing cards and laying around. They may no longer be able to enjoy spending time with their grandkids, being able to walk unassisted and exercise, or even have the ability to talk and communicate with others. A senior may have a lifetime of past things they enjoyed doing which they cannot now that the nursing home abuse has changed their life.
Lower Life Expectancy
The previous part of this article referenced a senior’s ability to enjoy life contributing to them remaining healthy. As long as they’re active and able to spend time with loved ones, their life expectancy is much higher. If someone takes that away from them, it’s really a downward spiral towards loss of life. Hurting someone to the point of injury and mental anguish changes their life forever and a senior many never recover.
A jury will be able to sympathize with the fact that someone’s life was shortened due to abuse and/or neglect and offer money damages as a result. Typically, the amount of reward one gets is tied to the amount of life expectancy they might’ve had. An attorney may be able to argue that someone was taken well before they were due to pass away due to amazing advancements in technology and health care.
Receiving Structured Settlements
A structured settlement is often a money payment that is paid throughout several installments. This is in contrast to getting all the money at once. Often times in cases that involve personal injury, the victim will receive a structured settlement. When it comes to seniors, they may not live long enough to see the full amount of what is awarded to them. Courts can give them special consideration when reading out a judgment.
In other cases, a structured settlement might be what they need. It offers long-term security for the rest of their lives. They can even structure the payments that kids and grandkids can receive future payments. The best way to deal with this situation is to hire an attorney who can fight for you and/or your loved one to receive the money damages you deserve.