When a resident enters a nursing home, they expect to have some semblance of privacy. While nursing home staff can enter a resident’s room to provide food, water, and help with daily hygiene, an expectation remains that a nursing home resident should have the security to know that their money and possessions will remain safe.
Unfortunately, there are circumstances in which unscrupulous nursing home employees either steal money or personal items from residents. Staff members also might not carefully monitor other residents or parties who could enter a nursing home and steal from residents, as well. Whichever case may occur, the responsibility remains with the nursing home, as it has a duty to provide residents with a safe, theft-free environment.
If you discover that your loved one is missing money or personal belongings from their room or another area in a nursing home, call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm today at (800) 842-6336 to schedule a free case evaluation. We can explain how a Jacksonville missing money or personal items lawyer might be able to help your loved one receive the compensation they deserve.
Nursing Home Reform Act of 1987
As outlined in the Nursing Home Reform Act of 1987, nursing home residents have several rights, including the right to privacy and the right to retain the possession of their personal property, belongings, and money. They have the right to live in an environment free from theft and ensure that their money and personal items remain safe. Nursing home residents also have the right to:
- Access their money and bank accounts
- Have any personal items they wish in their room or private area
- Spend their money as they see fit, or as decided by the family and the resident
- Keep their spending habits private
Duties of Nursing Homes Concerning Money and Personal Items
The Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care indicates that nursing homes have several responsibilities concerning their residents’ belongings and possessions. Facilities should:
- Have a written policy regarding any procedure if a loss of property or money occurs.
- Ensure all employees and staff receive proper instruction and training regarding the nursing home’s policies, how to monitor other residents and guests entering the facility to prevent theft, and how to handle theft if it occurs.
- Contact the police within 36 hours to report a theft greater than $100.
- Ask the resident’s family to provide a complete listing of the resident’s money and personal items upon entering the nursing home.
- Have a tracking or marking system to ensure that all property of a resident clearly indicates ownership.
For a free legal consultation with a Missing Money or Personal Items Lawyer serving Jacksonville, call (800) 794-0444
Examples of Theft of Money or Personal Items
Some examples of theft of personal items and money can include the following:
- Personal property
- Missing cash, checks, credit cards, or debit cards from the resident’s room
- Forged signatures on checking or savings accounts
- Checks cashed without authorization
- Sudden and unexplained changes in bank accounts
- ATM withdrawals using “borrowed” debit cards, which are then returned
- Purchases made with “borrowed” credit card numbers
- Misusing trust to attempt to have a nursing home resident change their estate planning documents
Jacksonville Missing Money or Personal Items Lawyer Near Me (800) 794-0444
What to Do When Your Loved One Experiences Missing Money or Personal Items
If you suspect your loved one either had money or a personal item stolen from them as a resident of a nursing home, consider taking the following steps:
- Immediately report the theft to the administration or management of the nursing home.
- Request a copy of the formal policy the nursing home follows when theft occurs.
- Ask what will happen and how the missing money or reimbursement for the personal item will occur and how long that process will take.
- Ask if any staff member will receive disciplinary action concerning the theft.
- Check to see if your homeowner’s insurance policy will cover the loss.
- Contact the police if you feel nursing home management is not taking the theft seriously.
- Write a demand letter requesting that the nursing home replace the money or compensate your loved one for the value of the missing personal item.
- File a lawsuit in court against the nursing home to pursue justice for your loved one.
If you think your loved one in a nursing home suffered theft, a Jacksonville missing money or personal items lawyer with Pintas & Mullins Law Firm can answer all of your legal questions. They also might be able to bring legal action against the nursing home to hold it liable for damages.
If you wish to pursue a case against the facility, you have a limited time to do so. Florida Statutes §429.296 allows up to two years to file a lawsuit concerning the financial abuse your loved one endured. If you did not immediately discover the theft, then you must file your lawsuit within two years after learning about the incident. Florida law also says you cannot bring an action more than four years after the incident date.
If you miss these deadlines, you likely will lose your chance to file a suit for recovery. The sooner you call, the sooner they can start working on building a solid case for you.
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Contact Pintas & Mullins Law Firm Today
Nursing home residents have the right to feel safe and not worry about their money or property suddenly disappearing. Your family members should feel as if they can trust the people who take care of their daily needs.
If you suspect or have proof that someone from the nursing home either stole money or personal items from your loved one, you might be able to file legal action for financial recovery.
You can learn how a Jacksonville missing money or personal items lawyer at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm can work with you to restore the financial loss and ensure that your loved one receives the justice they deserve. Call us today at (800) 842-6336 to schedule a free case evaluation.