The administration and staff at a nursing home are responsible for the well-being of the patients at their home. Assisted living communities often have more hands-off approaches, allowing seniors and older adults their individual freedom. In contrast, nursing homes often have the day-to-day care of their patients directly in their hands, taking responsibility for feeding and bathing patients while maintaining their dignity.
Nursing homes who neglect their patients, abuse their patients, or otherwise allow them to suffer and decline without proper medical attention, supervision, and assistance should be held responsible for their negligence. If your loved one died because of negligent care in a nursing home or your loved one was killed by abuse and neglect in a nursing care facility, call the Reiff Law Firm today. Our Bucks County nursing home wrongful death attorneys fight nursing homes and other care facilities in court, working to get victims and their families compensation for abuse, neglect, and wrongful death. To schedule a free legal consultation, call us today at (215) 246-9000.
Suing Nursing Homes for Wrongful Death in Bucks County, PA
If your loved one was in a nursing home, the nursing home had many duties they owed each and every patient. Nursing homes often have certain contractual obligations that dictate how they should care for their patients. There are also laws handed down stating certain requirements. In addition, there are certain reasonable standards that the law generally enforces to prevent people from causing unnecessary injuries or harm to people under their care and supervision. If violations of any of these duties caused your loved one to die in a nursing home, you might be entitled to sue for wrongful death.
To file a wrongful death lawsuit against a nursing home, your lawyer must be able to prove the following four elements:
- The nursing home owed your loved one a legal duty.
- The nursing home breached that duty.
- The breach of duty caused your loved one to pass away.
- There were deaths, injuries, or economic damages caused by the nursing home’s breach of duty.
As mentioned, various laws place legal obligations and duties on the nursing home’s administrators and staff. Leaving nursing home residents without medical attention, food, or clean conditions is an obvious example of neglect and negligence. Abuse is also absolutely a violation. Other mistakes and issues might be less clear, but our attorneys can investigate the case and help determine what the nursing home did wrong to cause the death of a parent, grandparent, or other loved one in their care.
The issue of causation is often an important element in nursing home wrongful death cases. The nursing home might claim that even if they were negligent, their negligence did not cause the death of your loved one because they were old and likely to pass away anyway. These assumptions are often wrong and offensive. Just because a patient is sick or elderly does not give the nursing home workers a free pass to ignore their needs or skip treatment. Our attorneys will seek to shut down these kinds of defenses and work to prove that the negligence on site at a nursing home directly led to your loved one’s death.
Seeking Damages for a Parent or Grandparent’s Death in a Nursing Home
The nursing home is responsible for what goes on behind its doors. The nurses, doctors, and other healthcare workers on staff should be properly trained and supervised to ensure that their care meets certain standards. Additionally, non-medical workers often owe certain duties to the patients to keep the place clean and to repair hidden dangers that could harm patients. If any of these workers caused injuries or conditions that led to your loved one’s wrongful death, you might be entitled to sue the nursing home for damages.
The nursing home is generally responsible for the mistakes its workers cause. This allows you to sue the nursing home to seek compensation rather than just suing the individual worker who was responsible for your loved one’s death. This can help you get even substantial damages covered in many cases.
Nursing homes will usually work to shut down claims against them. Often employing aggressive insurance representatives and legal teams, these nursing homes will refute claims of negligence on site, and they will seek to have claims shut down early. If your claim is strong, the nursing home might offer a low-dollar settlement to end the case cheaply and quickly. It is vital to have a lawyer who represents you and your best interests review any settlement offers and negotiate on your behalf to fight this kind of pressure.
Proving a Nursing Home Wrongful Death Lawsuit
In many cases against nursing homes, it is difficult to get all of the evidence of what happened leading up to your loved one’s death. If your loved one was killed in an accident or because of neglect in a nursing home, they cannot testify as to what happened to them. This means that you will usually need to rely on statements by nursing home staff, statements your loved one made before their death, and records kept by the nursing home.
A lawsuit can help you get much of this evidence through “discovery.” One of the main steps in a lawsuit, the discovery phase of the case allows your lawyer to subpoena individuals for depositions and sworn statements. It also allows you to subpoena records and other evidence to help prove your case. If evidence under their control was made unavailable or has been destroyed by, we might be able to ask the court to infer that the evidence would have helped your case. This might help you use evidence like destroyed medical records against the nursing home anyway. Talk to a lawyer about how your case will proceed for more information.
Call Our Bucks County Lawyers for Wrongful Death in a Nursing Home
If you had a loved one who was killed by unsanitary conditions, lack of medical care, neglect, or abuse in a nursing home, call the Reiff Law Firm today. Our Bucks County nursing home wrongful death attorneys represent the families of deceased nursing home residents. We fight to get your family the compensation you need after a death to help pay for funeral and burial expenses, end of life medical expenses, pain and suffering, and other damages related to the wrongful death. For your free case consultation, call us today at (215) 246-9000.