Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect Lawyer in Ohio
Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect Lawyer in Ohio
It is a nightmare that no one wants to think about, but unfortunately, nursing home abuse is all too common. In fact, according to a 2015 study in the New England Journal of Medicine, approximately one in 10 people over 60 years old have experienced some type of abuse.
Because of the level of control and power that nursing home workers wield over their elderly patients, and because many patients are unable to effectively report their abuse, this demographic is one of the least likely to report their abuse to relatives or staff members. Both Ohio state and federal laws and regulations are in place to protect nursing home patients from abuse and neglect by those entrusted with their care.
A nursing home abuse and neglect lawyer in Ohio can help you seek justice for your loved one.
What are the different types of nursing home abuse?
When people consider nursing home abuse, they often think of angry caregivers physically abusing their residents. However, nursing home abuse can be any of the following:
- Physical (e.g., hitting, pinching, unnecessary use of restraints, force-feeding, etc.)
- Sexual (e.g., touching, inappropriate photography, etc.)
- Emotional (e.g., screaming at a resident, humiliating a resident, isolating a resident, etc.)
- Financial (e.g., unauthorized use of the elder’s financials)
- Neglect (e.g., failing to change bedsheets, failing to give the resident medication, etc.)
If your loved one was the victim of any of these forms of abuse, you can file a claim to recover compensation for the harms your loved one suffered.
Who can I hold liable for nursing home abuse in Ohio?
To recover compensation for your loved one’s harms, you need a liable party. While you might think that your liable party is the abuser in each case, this is not always true. If the abuser is a staff member at a nursing home, you would hold the nursing home liable as it is vicariously liable for its employees’ actions.
While you can hold the nursing home vicariously liable, you might also be able to hold the nursing home directly liable if the abuse stemmed from understaffing, negligent hiring, or a lack of training.
Who can file a nursing home abuse case in Ohio?
A victim of nursing home abuse can file a claim against the facility or guilty parties directly or with the assistance of an attorney. A person entrusted with power of attorney or a representative of the patient’s estate might also be able to file a claim; discuss your options with an attorney.
Depending on the type of abuse or neglect, these cases can fall under personal injury or medical malpractice. Medical malpractice claims are especially complex and require the establishment of several criteria to bring a suit.
An attorney can work with you to file subpoenas and conduct depositions of nursing home staff and fellow patients to establish the legitimacy of your claim. S/he can also work with you to file an Affidavit of Merit, a required document signed by a medical expert that states that the nursing home was negligent in its duties to the patient and caused the patient harm.
If your claim is successful, you can recover compensation for your loved one’s:
- Medical bills
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
In cases of especially egregious conduct, the court might award punitive damages to punish the nursing home.
What should I do if I suspect a loved one is the victim of nursing home abuse?
If you suspect that your loved one suffering abuse in her nursing home, take the following steps:
- Move your loved one to a different facility, to eliminate an ongoing threat and ease her concerns about speaking out for fear of retribution.
- File a complaint with the Ohio Department of Health’s Nursing Home Hotline. The Department will conduct an investigation and potentially cite the facility for a violation, which will strengthen your case.
- Gather all documents and supporting evidence for your claim, and meet with an attorney who practices medical malpractice or nursing home abuse law. An Ohio attorney familiar with the laws and intricacies of these cases can provide you with an objective case evaluation and course of action to pursue damages for the suffering of your loved one.
Nursing home abuse cases are complex. Staff members may be reluctant to risk their employment by speaking out against a colleague; patients may be afraid to speak out for fear of retribution; and facilities may be quick to dismiss the patient’s claims as being the result of dementia or exaggeration.
An Ohio nursing home abuse attorney can help you file the correct motions to move your case forward. Call for a free consultation today: 440-863-0845.