Nursing home neglect is a serious issue, and it affects all too many people in this world. It is truly a tragedy whenever our parents and grandparents are allowed to suffer, particularly due to neglect by the people who are supposed to take care of them. But when it comes to filing a nursing home neglect claim, there are a number of questions that are asked about the proper way to do it, and one of those questions is, “am I even allowed to file a nursing home neglect claim?”
Who can file a nursing home neglect claim?
Different states are going to have different rules they enforce on nursing home neglect claims. This also applies to other elder care facilities. First off, let’s look at how nursing home neglect claims are even determined. In a nursing home, accidents are inevitably going to happen. After all, elderly people on average have more mobility issues than other age groups, and they are usually in nursing homes because they require extra care in order to get around their home. As a result, even in a nursing home facility, they may find themselves falling over while walking, and a fall can be pretty devastating to an elderly person. They tend to bruise more easily and tend to have weaker bones, leading to a fracture happening more easily. As a result, nursing homes are not going to be held responsible in every single incident involving an injury or other type of accident.
In Maryland, nursing home neglect claims require that you show that an accident or injury was something that could have been avoided, had one or more people working at the nursing home done their job properly. This means that you have to show that the injury occurred due to either action taken by someone at the nursing home that directly led to the injury, or merely that their inaction resulted in it. And these are not going to be rare things; in some nursing homes, accidents caused by nursing home staff seem to run rampant, and in some instances, nursing home neglect can be done intentionally, with an employee taking advantage of the fact that a person is in a weakened state or of a diminished mental capacity so that they can abuse them.
Nursing home neglect can take on many forms, ranging from neglect, abuse, property liability, and medical malpractice. Property liability is specifically where the workers fail to take care of the property in a person’s room or allow it to be stolen or damaged by someone else through neglect. It may even come in the form of them stealing a person’s property, usually to sell it off. Of course, nursing home neglect does not require that someone be aiming to cause that neglect, merely that they could and should have done more to avoid it happening in the first place. If any negligence is suspected, the first thing you should do is call a Maryland nursing home neglect lawyer, If you suspect abuse, make sure you or your lawyer contact 410-402-8108 in order to get a hold of the Maryland Office of Health Care Quality to have them take care of things.
As far as who can file, there are different factors that play into this question. For example, whether the resident is alive or dead is going to come into play; if they are still alive, the only ones that can file a case against the nursing home are the resident or the resident’s legal representative (be it a guardian, someone with power of attorney, etc.). On the other hand, if the resident has passed away as a result of negligence or abuse, it is the responsibility of the estate to file a claim. Others who can file a claim on the resident’s behalf include their spouse, parents, and any of their children. They can also file a wrongful death claim in this instance, as well as emotional damages and any economic losses associated with the abuse and death. These kinds of damages may have limits depending on the state the suit is filed in, so be aware and mindful of your state’s laws. In the state of Maryland, the most a person can get for a pain and suffering claim is $890,000 as of 2021. While going to trial may seem like a frustrating thing to handle, the good news is that most cases relating to nursing home neglect do not go past the settlement phase.