A nursing home has a responsibility to ensure that their residents receive constant monitoring and remain safe. No resident should ever leave the nursing home facility without proper supervision. Many nursing home residents have health conditions or disabilities that prevent them from independently performing simple tasks. With this in mind, if a resident were to wander away from the facility’s premises alone, they could suffer serious injuries or even death.
If your elderly loved one eloped from their nursing home only to suffer an injury or pass away, contact a Riverside wandering and elopement lawyer at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm.
Wandering and Elopement From Nursing Homes
Many nursing home residents suffer from cognitive deterioration leading to medical conditions such as dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. When nursing home residents suffer from these conditions, they often become easily distracted or confused regarding their current surroundings. When these times of confusion occur, elderly residents may attempt to wander or elope from their nursing home facility.
Many elements can trigger a resident’s desire to leave the premises. Anything from a change in routine to the visitation of a loved one may cause an elderly resident to leave the facility. Those with diminished cognitive function but retain excellent mobility are at the greatest risk for wandering or elopement.
According to the American Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease and Other Dementias, in these situations, negligence on the part of the nursing home may include:
- Lack of effective precautions to prevent a resident from leaving the premises
- Ineffective monitoring of patients who had previously eloped or were inclined to do so
- Facility staff not aware of a missing patient
- Ineffective security measures, such as alarms, to alert the staff of a patient’s attempts to leave
Once a nursing home resident wanders from a facility unattended, serious accidents or death may occur. Every nursing home facility should have protocols and specific procedures in place to completely eliminate the possibility that an elderly resident can leave the facility unsupervised. Failure to do so is negligence and may result in liability.
Elopement and Nursing Home Negligence
If an elderly resident leaves the facility without authorization, the nursing home neglected their duty and obligation to keep that resident safe.
Nursing homes should have the following precautions in place to prevent wandering or elopement:
- Have doors to the exterior locked at all times with alarms ready to sound if any person attempts to leave without approval
- Mandating that visitors sign in and sign out, and receive an identification badge
- Monitor residents who have the propensity to wander
- Properly supervising all indoor and outdoor activities
- Account for all residents several times a day
- Perform elopement drills for the nursing home staff employees to ensure that they follow proper procedures in emergency situations
For a free legal consultation with a Wandering and Elopement Lawyer serving Riverside, call (800) 794-0444
Economic Recovery Can Cover Your Damages
At Pintas & Mullins Law Firm, our primary goal is to get you a financial recovery. When you begin your partnership with us, one of our first steps will involve discussing what type of damages you have incurred as a result of your loved one’s injuries. Sharing this information will allow us to estimate the amount of recovery you may be able to receive through the legal process.
These can include:
- Medical bills and related expenses
- Assistive equipment, such as a wheelchair or crutches
- The cost of relocating to another care facility
- Emotional trauma
- Pain and suffering and inconvenience
If a loved one passed away due to their injuries while wandering, you may be able to file a wrongful death claim.
Those damages may include:
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of inheritance
- Funeral expenses
What your compensation may entail can be delved into further with the help of a legal professional.
Riverside Wandering and Elopement Lawyer Near Me (800) 794-0444
Services a Lawyer Can Provide
Moving forward with allegations against a nursing home can quickly become frustrating and complicated. For this reason, you may want a legal professional to help you navigate the legal process. One of the first steps your lawyer may take is collecting evidence that supports your negligence claim.
Evidence can include:
- Photographs documenting your loved one’s injuries
- Statements from nursing home staff regarding your family member’s elopement
- Records from the facility that show previous instances of wandering or neglect
- Any comments your loved one may be able to give if they are cognitively able
- Information provided by law enforcement, including a police report, if available
Afterward, your team will notify the nursing home of your intention to move forward with a civil action. From there, they have 60 days under Illinois compiled statutes to address your grievances. This can involve offering you a settlement or otherwise taking measures to protect your loved one from further harm. If the nursing home does not act within this time frame, then you will have the option of taking your case before a judge.
During this time, your lawyer can:
- Initiate your case under the state’s statute of limitations
- Assign liability to the care facility
- Negotiate for compensation that covers your damages
- Present evidence relating to your loved one’s injuries or health condition
- Advocate for your family’s legal rights
Your legal team will likely be able to provide additional services than the ones we have listed here. There is no data indicating how much money you may be able to recover at the conclusion of your case; however, the amount typically correlates to the extent of injuries your loved one suffered.
Click to contact our Wandering and Elopement Lawyers today
Contact a Riverside Wandering and Elopement Lawyer Today
Your elderly loved one should never have had the opportunity to wander from their nursing home unattended. If a loved one suffered any injuries or passed away due to their elopement from a nursing home facility, you have legal protections under the law. To start your free case review, call a Riverside wandering and elopement lawyer from Pintas & Mullins Law Firm.