When older people move into nursing home facilities, despite the fact that they may be experiencing deteriorating physical or mental conditions, they have a reasonable right to expect they will be well cared for. Most of the time, that’s the case.
However, there are instances where nursing homes to do not measure up and can actually cause harm to the people they are entrusted to care for. This can either be through negligent acts or through intentional acts. Sometimes, this is the result of too heavy of a caseload, or poor training or an inadequate screening process when hiring employees.
Nursing homes can be held liable in many ways for abuse ranging from physical abuse to false imprisonment, or general violations in operations or licensing. If a lawyer can prove that the owners were negligent in their duty to provide a certain standard of care and that that negligence resulted in an injury, then a claim seeking damages may be filed.
In many cases, a resident will also enter into a contract with a nursing home which will clearly define what services are provided and how they are to be carried out. Another way to prove negligence is if the nursing home breached the terms of the contract.
Beyond civil matters regarding nursing home abuse, there are instances when a facility could face criminal penalties related to abuse or neglect. Exploitation of residents is less common but is a possibility. Failing to provide adequate food or not keeping residents clean enough, as well as other related actions maybe be a cause for criminal neglect charges to be filed. These types of cases will vary from state to state, but they can result in criminal convictions many times.
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