Vulnerable adults deserve to feel safe at home, but they are all too often mistreated. Nursing home abuse is much more widespread than many people realize. Abuse can take many forms, and it does not always leave behind physical signs.
Emotional abuse can be traumatic and can have devastating consequences. Nursing home residents who have been emotionally abused may become anxious, depressed, and withdrawn. Victims may also experience physical changes if they do not eat enough or do not get enough sleep.
If you suspect that your loved one was abused while receiving care in a nursing home, a Jacksonville emotional abuse lawyer may be able to help. Pintas & Mullins Law Firm helps families whose loved ones were mistreated seek justice. Call us today at (800) 842-6336 to speak with a member of our staff about what we may be able to do to assist you.
Types of Emotional Abuse
When people think of emotional abuse, they tend to think of verbal forms of mistreatment, such as yelling, name-calling, and making threats. Emotional abuse can also take other forms, according to the National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care. Some types of emotional abuse may be less obvious but equally or even more traumatic.
Elderly people who live in nursing homes may have serious medical problems that cause them to be mostly or entirely dependent on staff members for help with basic needs. Seniors in long-term care facilities may be unable to feed and bathe themselves or to use the bathroom without assistance.
Emotionally abusive staffers may ignore a resident who asks for help. Workers may leave a vulnerable adult unfed, unwashed, and unable to get to the bathroom. A resident may try to take care of matters but may fall and get injured due to physical limitations. Abusive employees may then report that the injuries were the result of an accident.
Humiliation is another form of emotional abuse. Workers may ridicule a vulnerable adult, either privately or in front of others. For example, they may make jokes about a resident’s disability or physical appearance or may mock a person who is unable to use the bathroom without assistance. Those forms of mistreatment can cause a victim to become withdrawn and to avoid social interactions.
Emotionally abusive employees may cause a victim to become socially isolated. For example, workers may not allow a resident to attend an event or gathering with others or may make excuses to keep a patient from family members. They may tell relatives who call that the resident is taking a nap, even though the patient is awake, or may tell family members that their loved one is not feeling up for a visit when, in fact, he or she wants to see relatives.
How a Jacksonville Emotional Abuse Lawyer May Be Able to Help
Emotional abuse of an elderly person or a disabled adult is illegal, according to Florida Statutes §825.102. The law states that it is a felony to intentionally cause psychological injuries to an elderly adult, commit an intentional act that could reasonably be expected to inflict physical or psychological injury, or actively encourage another person to commit such an act.
Pintas & Mullins Law Firm has represented families in Florida and across the United States and helped them pursue justice on behalf of their loved ones who were abused in long-term care facilities. Our team can investigate to figure out what happened to your relative and who was responsible.
We can begin by interviewing you to learn more about what you have observed that has caused you to suspect that your family member has been mistreated. You might have noted changes in your loved one’s appearance or demeanor. For instance, you may have noticed that your family member has lost weight or seems tired, withdrawn, or anxious.
We can speak with others who may be able to shed light on the situation, such as other residents. We may also interview other employees to learn whether they witnessed or heard about abuse and, if so, how the matter was addressed.
Our staff may review internal documents related to the facility’s hiring and training processes. We may also learn whether the nursing home investigated your family member’s alleged abuse and whether the facility had received similar complaints from other residents.
If our investigation uncovers evidence that your loved one has been emotionally abused, we may be able to file a personal injury lawsuit against the facility. We may pursue a financial award to compensate your relative for what they have endured.
For a free legal consultation with a Jacksonville Emotional Abuse Lawyer serving Jacksonville, call (800) 794-0444
Hire a Jacksonville Emotional Abuse Lawyer
Emotional abuse can be devastating for anyone, but it can be particularly traumatic for senior citizens living in nursing homes. They may be suffering from a host of medical issues and may also have Alzheimer’s disease or dementia. They may be unable to handle many of their own basic needs and may not fully understand where they are, who is caring for them, and what is going on around them.
People in such a vulnerable position deserve to be treated with empathy and compassion, but unfortunately, many receive abusive treatment. If your family member has been abused, a lawyer from our firm may be able to help by filing a personal injury lawsuit.
Our team can often negotiate a financial settlement without taking a case to court and spare our clients and their families the stress of a trial. If we are unable to negotiate a fair settlement, however, we will go to court to pursue justice on behalf of a client.
According to Florida Statutes §429.296, a personal injury lawsuit must be filed within two years of the date when an incident occurred or when you discovered the abuse, but no more than four years after the incident. If you do not meet the deadline, your family may be unable to pursue compensation. Call us today at (800) 842-6336 so our team can get to work as quickly as possible.