Family members can sue a memory care facility for the wandering and elopement of a loved one if the incident led to injuries.
The Purpose of a Memory Care Facility
Memory care facilities refer to specialized assisted living communities, according to the National Institute on Aging (NIA). They offer care for elderly adults who suffer from a variety of mental disorders that can affect their memory. Residents of these facilities often suffer from Alzheimer’s disease or dementia.
As opposed to a nursing home, these facilities focus on increasing the safety and quality of life for these particular residents. This means that they must offer increased security and medical attention aimed to reduce the dangers associated with memory loss.
With such a tall order to undertake, it can be alarming and disheartening to discover that your elderly loved one managed to elope or wander off the premises. If they suffered injuries during their elopement, the liability for their suffering may fall on the memory care facility itself. The determining factor lies in how the resident was able to wander off the premise and who bears the blame for this event.
Memory Care Facilities and Their Regulations
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) details some of the procedures memory care facilities can take to ensure the safety of their residents. For example, these facilities can employ restricted access codes to entryways and exits, escort residents to and from various locations of the premises, and help residents maintain a routine schedule. These actions can reduce instances of wandering and elopement.
Additionally, the Office of Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) sets various regulations for memory care facilities. These facilities must disclose their building design and safety features, which need to be equipped with watchful oversight systems. These regulations directly address the dangers of wandering and elopement in residents suffering from memory loss. They also require the facilities staff members to possess specialized training to care for these residents.
If a memory care facility fails to adhere to these regulations and your loved one wanders off the premises and suffers a fall, for example, the facility may be responsible for their injuries. This may allow you to sue a memory care facility for the wandering and elopement of a loved one.
For a free legal consultation, call (800) 794-0444
How a Lawyer Can Help
It can be difficult to assign liability to a memory care facility, and if their insurance does not fairly cover the losses your loved one experienced due to their injury, you may have the ability to file a personal injury lawsuit.
A lawyer can help you with your case by:
- Investigating the facility’s adherence to the federal regulations
- Establishing the connection between your loved one’s ability to wander off and their injuries
- Negotiating for fair compensation with the facility’s insurers
- Representing you in a trial, if necessary
Caring for your elderly loved one after they suffered injuries can take up much of your time and energy. You do not have to face the legal battle against a memory care facility alone, though. You have a right to seek legal representation when pursuing an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit. Your lawyer can advise you on your best options for recovering both economic and non-economic losses.
Pintas & Mullins Law Firm Can Help
At Pintas & Mullins Law Firm, our lawyers represent family members and residents who suffered injuries in these types of situations. We can help investigate the accident that took place when they wandered off and got hurt to determine if the memory care facility should have taken greater precautions to prevent their wandering and elopement.
If you are now helping a loved one to heal from their injuries after an episode of wandering, you can give us a call to discuss your case in a free consultation. You can reach us at (800) 794-0444 for more information. We can help with various aspects of your case, whether you are seeking to file an insurance claim or a personal injury lawsuit.