Every year over 4 million elderly people are victims of emotional, physical or sexual abuse. The abuse usually happens in a nursing home setting. Therefore, where does the nursing home abuse liability lie? Is it just the facility, or an employee, or possibly a third party?
Nursing Homes & Duty of Care
Nursing homes have a strict “duty of care” to residents. They must provide a safe place with services such as food, shelter, hygiene and medical care. Plus, staff must provide therapy and other physical activities. Because of this, there are a variety of settings and activities in which a resident may suffer an injury or abuse.
The responsibility falls within a few categories:
- Negligent training of staff
- Failure to perform adequate background checks
- Not properly monitoring staff
- Inadequate security
- Neglecting to provide daily necessities like food or water
- Not addressing medical needs
- Improper protection from health and safety hazards
- Dangerous physical restraints
- Intentional abuse
If negligence was responsible for the abuse, then the nursing home may be held legally liable for all resulting damages.
Third Party Responsibilities
The nursing home is always legally responsible if a resident is abused. However, there could be other parties responsible. This could the staff member, a visitor who witnessed or performed the abuse. The nursing home might be liable for failing to provide adequate security. However, if an outside security contractor provides the security to the facility, that entity might also be legally liable for negligence in the delivery of its security services
Elder Abuse Suspicion
If you suspect sexual, emotional or physical abuse of an elderly nursing home resident, it is important to report the incident. There are toll-free state numbers to make a report or go to www.eldercare.gov.
An experienced lawyer like those at The Michael Brady Lynch Firm can also assist you in identifying the appropriate agency to contact, as well as help with making sure the nursing home resident gets out of a problem situation and into a safe environment. Just as importantly, the lawyer can assist you in identifying the person or party responsible for the injury or abuse.
If you suspect your loved one is being abused or neglected, do not accept denials. Instead, contact a knowledgeable lawyer experienced with representing victims. We have been assisting the injured for 20 years. We help clients from all over the country. Our consultations are completely free. Call today.