Elder abuse and neglect can occur in many different ways. Because of understaffing, unqualified caretakers, inadequate training, or a general lack of care, many of the millions of residents in nursing homes in the United States suffer from abuse and neglect.
One of the most common forms of neglect and a serious danger to elderly residents in nursing homes is choking. If your loved one in a Kansas City nursing home suffered from a choking episode and was injured or died because of choking, you may have a legal claim for elder abuse or neglect and be entitled to compensation.
A Kansas City choking lawyer with Pintas & Mullins Law Firm can help protect your legal rights and get justice for your loved one. Contact us today at (800) 842-6336 for a free consultation to learn more about your legal options.
Choking Is a Leading Cause of Death
The National Safety Council (NSC) reports that choking is the fourth leading cause of death from unintentional injury and that more than half of these deaths occur in people who are 74 or older. One reason why the risk of choking deaths is high in nursing homes is that many elderly people develop a condition called dysphagia.
According to the Mayo Clinic, dysphagia is when a person has difficulty swallowing. It is often caused by a loss of muscle strength in the throat and mouth as a person ages. This can lead to nursing home residents choking on their food if they are not given proper meals (such as soft food cut into small pieces) or do not have the assistance and monitoring they need while eating.
Besides the risks of choking while eating, nursing home residents can also experience choking from:
- Difficulty chewing with dentures
- Putting too much food into their mouth or not chewing properly because of dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, or another cognitive impairment
- Being unable to cough strongly enough to dislodge food or something else caught in their throat or lungs
- Extreme dry mouth
- Degenerative diseases, such as Parkinson’s
- Effects of a stroke
Choking is a serious problem that can cause suffocation and death as well as other health concerns, such as hypoxia (a lack of oxygen in the brain), brain damage, and aspiration pneumonia (when bits of food in the lungs cause an infection).
Nursing Homes Can Be Liable for Choking
All nursing homes have a responsibility to provide a safe environment for their residents. Part of this responsibility includes being aware of the dangers of choking and working to prevent it, including providing appropriate meals, monitoring residents as they eat, and feeding residents by hand when necessary.
When a nursing home or its staff fails in these duties, they can be held legally responsible for their actions. If you believe your loved one in a nursing home was a victim of neglect or abuse because of choking, a Kansas City choking lawyer may be able to help.
Our team can investigate the circumstances of your loved one’s choking and gather evidence of abuse or neglect to help you make a legal case for compensation. This evidence may include:
- Witness statements
- Facility records
- Medical records
- Expert medical testimony
You may be able to receive compensation and pursue accountability for your loved one’s suffering through a lawsuit for abuse, neglect, personal injury, or wrongful death. Contact Pintas & Mullins Law Firm today to learn more about your legal options and get started on your case.
For a free legal consultation with a Choking Lawyer serving Kansas City, call (800) 794-0444
Recoverable Damages for Abuse and Neglect
Whether it is intentional abuse or unintentional neglect, when one person harms another, you have the right to pursue compensation for your losses. The damages you may be able to recover for your loved one’s choking injury or death in a nursing home include:
- Past and future medical costs
- Physical pain and suffering
- Emotional distress or mental anguish
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of support or guidance
Not only can recovering damages help ease your financial burden and compensate you for your losses, but it may also help protect your loved one and other nursing home residents in the future by holding the negligent or abusive parties accountable for their actions.
Kansas City Choking Lawyer Near Me (800) 794-0444
How the Statute of Limitations Can Affect Your Case
A statute of limitations is a law that specifies how long you have to bring legal action after a wrongful event. If you miss this deadline for filing a lawsuit, you can lose your legal right to recover compensation for your loved one’s suffering.
In the state of Missouri, you have five years to pursue a personal injury case like elder abuse or neglect, according to Revised Statutes of Missouri (RSMo) §516.120. If your loved one died from choking in a nursing home, RSMo §537.100 gives you three years to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit.
Building a case is a lengthy process, so it is in your best interest to consult a Kansas City choking lawyer right away to make sure you have time to act within the statute of limitations.
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Contact Pintas & Mullins Law Firm Today
At Pintas & Mullins Law Firm, we are dedicated to giving a voice to anyone who suffers from abuse or neglect. Our team of Kansas City choking lawyers is ready to help you pursue justice for your loved one. We work on a contingency basis, which means that we will never charge you any fees unless we can obtain a financial settlement for you.
If your loved one was harmed in a nursing home by choking or any other form of abuse or neglect, contact us today at (800) 842-6336 to discuss your case and fight for the compensation you deserve.