A nursing home should be a place where residents feel safe and secure while receiving the care and medical attention they need. When it comes to personal belongings, the elderly have the right to retain possessions without the fear that someone will suddenly take them away. Beyond having sentimental or practical value, these items also play the role of helping residents maintain their sense of identity and make their rooms feel more like home. It is already difficult for many seniors to live away from their families, and dealing with lost money or belongings can cause them undue stress.
If you feel that a nursing home has violated your trust by being remiss in their duty to provide the care your family member is entitled to, you may have the right to take legal action. A Columbus missing money or personal items lawyer can assess your situation and determine your legal options in making a recovery. Learn more about your potential abuse case today by contacting Pintas & Mullins Law Firm at (800) 842-6336.
Nursing Homes Should Guarantee a High Level of Care to Their Residents
Although federal and state laws defend the rights of nursing home residents, you can do your part to ensure that you or your loved one stays protected. It is essential to know what facilities should not be doing and what actions to take when there is a lack of compliance.
According to the Department of Justice (DOJ), the Nursing Home Reform Act of 1987 is a federally enforced law that sees that skilled nursing homes deliver on their commitment to offering patients the highest level of care. Nursing homes must ensure the security of their residents’ possessions and finances. Any violation of the law can lead to sanctions, as well as lawsuits.
Bill of Rights for Columbus Nursing Home Residents
Supplementary to the NHRA, the Ohio Revised Code (ORC) §3721.13 further guarantees that nursing home residents in Columbus receive the care they deserve. Also known as the Ohio Nursing Home Bill of Rights, this law mandates that your loved one should be free from financial exploitation. It is illegal for a nursing home to use a resident’s funds unlawfully or improperly.
Stealing possessions or money is a form of financial exploitation that is a type of elder abuse. Other actions that can fall under financial abuse include cashing a check without consent, using property or funds without permission, forging signatures to access funds, and other actions considered as misappropriation of property, funds, or other assets.
Nursing home patients are not always capable of looking after their belongings adequately. For the most part, the nursing home must safeguard the residents’ personal property. Unfortunately, theft of money and possessions has become commonplace in nursing facilities, and possible culprits are staff members, fellow residents, or nursing home visitors.
If you suspect that a nursing home took advantage of your loved one financially or has breached a legal right, do not hesitate to reach out to a Columbus missing money or personal items lawyer. Keep in mind that the elderly can become victims, even when they do not suffer from physical or emotional abuse. Theft, financial schemes, extortion, and other forms of financial harm can adversely affect your loved one.
For a free legal consultation with a Missing Money or Personal Items Lawyer serving Columbus, call (800) 794-0444
What You Can Do If You Believe a Nursing Home Is Liable
As soon as you find out that your family member is losing personal belongings or money, you should take steps to remove them from an upsetting situation. Although signs of financial exploitation are not physical, they can still cause elderly residents to suffer. You might notice that your loved one seems withdrawn or has become prone to hiding belongings. In some instances, the nursing home staff’s unusual behavior can set off alarm bells, such as when they do not want you to talk to your loved one alone. When this happens, you shouldn’t wait before dealing with the situation.
You can begin by reporting the incident to the nursing home administration. Consider telling them about your suspicions or what you think happened to your loved one’s money or physical possessions. The Nursing Home Reform Act gives residents the right to file complaints without fear of retribution or discrimination. You may also wish to learn more about reporting elder abuse through the Ohio Department of Aging or by having the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) investigate your complaint regarding abuse, exploitation, or misappropriation.
Whether or not you are satisfied with how the nursing home or concerned agencies handle your complaint, it is best that you still get in touch with a lawyer. State and law enforcement agencies may be able to hold the nursing home accountable for their negligent or inappropriate actions, but a lawyer can help you and your loved one pursue the compensation you need.
Columbus Missing Money or Personal Items Lawyer Near Me (800) 794-0444
More Reasons to Work with a Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer
Regardless of the circumstances surrounding your complaint, there are significant benefits to hiring an attorney once you decide to file a lawsuit. The claims process can be complicated, and you do not have to worry about jeopardizing your case if you have a legal representative’s guidance. Moreover, it may be challenging to prove that the nursing home is liable for losing any money or personal item, but your lawyer can conduct a thorough investigation to figure out what happened. You can leave the evaluation of the nursing home’s hiring practices, collection of evidence, witness interviews, and identification of all liable parties in the hands of someone who understands nursing home abuse cases.
If you have already taken steps to report financial exploitation or abuse, a lawyer can come to your aid if the report has been altered or lost. In case you have not yet filed anything, your attorney can be the one to make the report to the proper authorities and inform the nursing home about your potential claim.
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We Are Here if You Are Ready to Pursue Justice
If you or your elderly loved one suffered any harm at a nursing home, it may not be immediately apparent who should be legally responsible and what exactly took place. Pintas & Mullins Law Firm is ready to provide you with the services you need, and we will do what is necessary to facilitate the legal process. Call us today at (800) 842-6336 for a free consultation. When you work with a Columbus missing money or personal items lawyer, they can tell you more about your rights and available compensation.