Some nursing homes do not provide the required standard of care, causing residents’ quality of life to deteriorate below acceptable levels.
If your loved one suffered an injury due to abuse or neglect in a nursing home in Montgomery, Alabama, you may be entitled to compensation. Let a Montgomery nursing home abuse lawyer from our firm help your family.
Rights of Nursing Home Residents in Alabama
Even though older adults have diminishing physical and mental abilities, there are state and federal laws enacted to protect their rights. Elder abuse has been a major problem throughout the USA. The National Council on Aging (NCOA) reports that about 1 in 10 adults over 60 years has experienced elder abuse.
Regardless of their age and physical/mental abilities, older adults have the following rights:
- To be independent
- To make their own decisions—or participate in decision-making
- To be protected from harm
- To be treated with dignity and respect
- To preserve their privacy
- To not be discriminated against
- To not be neglected or abused
- To receive appropriate medical care as necessary
Of course, these rights are enforced to whatever degree is possible according to their state of health. However, failing health and requiring assistance should not give any person a pretext to take advantage of an elderly person.
If your loved one’s rights were violated in the nursing home they reside, they (or you on their behalf) have a right to complain without fear of retaliation. Complaints are usually channeled to facility administration, then state officials (if nothing changes).
However, criminal acts should be reported to the police—if you suspect any physical abuse, financial abuse, or fraud, for example. If complaints to the administration are not acknowledged, it is helpful to consult a Montgomery nursing home abuse lawyer. They can advise you regarding the next steps, according to your case details.
Forms of Elder Abuse and Neglect in Nursing Homes
Elder abuse refers to intentional acts that violate the rights of a resident in a nursing home, intended to harm or injure the resident. Neglect, conversely, refers to omissions or careless actions that indirectly cause injuries to residents.
In the nursing home, doctors, nurses, nursing assistants, or other staff members may be sloppy, overworked, or careless when providing care. This can risk elder residents’ health or cause them to suffer various injuries. For example, a resident might fall after calling for assistance to leave the bed and go to the bathroom. Or they may contract an infection because of living in unsanitary spaces.
Other forms of nursing home abuse include:
Staff should not touch residents more than necessary to do their jobs. The following harmful use of force or physical contact is inappropriate.
- Excessive use of force when restraining
These cause lacerations, bruises, cuts, swellings, skin discoloration, fractures, concussions, and other injuries
Non-consensual sexual conduct towards male and female residents should be rectified, including harassment, contact, or assault. This also includes taking unwanted photographs, spying, exceeding necessary boundaries when grooming, among others.
Verbal/nonverbal behaviors that cause mental anguish or emotional distress, e.g., belittling, humiliation, cursing, or gaslighting is emotional abuse. This often makes the resident retreat into themselves or develop mental health issues like anxiety, depression, or suicidal thoughts/tendencies.
Theft or fraud related to a resident’s estate, money, investments, personal items, or other financial transactions could entitle your loved one to compensation.
Injuries that may result from abuse and neglect include:
- Head, neck, or spinal injuries
- Broken bones and fractures
- Malnutrition, dehydration, and unexplained weight loss
- Mood disorders, anxiety, depression, and suicidal tendencies
For a free legal consultation with a Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer serving Montgomery, call (800) 842-6336
Medical malpractice is another possible form of elder abuse. Alabama Code §6-5-580 describes the standards of care that healthcare providers must follow when tending to patients. It states that they should “exercise such reasonable care, skills, and diligence as other similarly situated health care providers in the same general line of practice” when facing the same circumstances.
Montgomery Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Near Me (800) 842-6336
Recoverable Damages for Elder Abuse or Neglect in Montgomery
Has your loved one suffered an injury or died because of abuse or neglect, including medical malpractice, in a nursing home? If so, they (or their representatives) have the right to pursue compensation for any physical, psychological, or economic injuries or losses.
When making a civil claim, a lawyer can help you document evidence, interview witnesses, and build a strong case. Thereafter, they will help you to file a claim to seek compensation according to the injuries your loved one suffered. If your civil action suit is successful, you may receive the following compensatory damages:
- Medical and rehabilitative care expenses
- Physical pain and suffering
- Mental anguish and emotional distress
- Disability and disfigurement/physical limitations
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Wrongful death, among others
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You Have a Limited Time to Act
In cases of personal injury or wrongful death, Alabama laws set the statute of limitations at only two years from the date of the incident. Considering the time necessary to gather evidence and build a case, you can see how this period flies right by. This is why you may want to get help from a Montgomery nursing home abuse lawyer as soon as possible after you discover signs of neglect or abuse.
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A Montgomery Personal Injury Lawyer Will Help You Fight for Justice
At Pintas & Mullins Law Firm, we have fought on behalf of victims of nursing home neglect and abuse for decades. We will work hard to ensure that your loved one receives justice, while the perpetrators of the neglect or abuse are held accountable.
Call us at (800) 842-6336 to speak to one of our team members about your case. This meeting is 100% free and confidential—call us now!