Elder abuse is defined as any harmful act of negligence or violence which is done knowingly and intentionally against an elder. If a nursing home resident is being abused they need to call a nursing home abuse lawyer in Miami, Florida as soon as possible in order to ensure the abuse is stopped immediately. If the long-term care facility knows they are at risk of a legal investigation and a lawsuit is imminent they will most likely exhaust all their resources to ensure the happiness of the resident and they will make the required accommodations to stop the abuse from occurring again.
In order for the nursing home to be held liable from a legal perspective, a person has to be able to prove that the nursing home had the capacity to prevent the abuse but they did not take action. The abuse has to have been intentional in order for the facility to be held responsible. However, a person can still receive some form of compensation for accidental cases of abuse, but the compensation will most likely be received through a third party and not the facility itself.
For instance, if an elder received physical injuries because their wheelchair malfunctioned, the wheelchair manufacturer, or the individual responsible for maintaining the wheelchairs can be held to legal account to pay for the injuries.
What forms of abuse are common in a nursing home?
There are many different forms of abuse which a person can seek compensation for. Elders are often exposed to the following type of abuse:
- Emotional abuse
- Physical abuse
- Sexual abuse
- Financial abuse
- Neglect and abandonment
If a person is being severely abused they should immediately call the police or Adult Protective Services in order to be relieved from the dangerous environment they are living in. Once they are safe from their abusers they can contact a legal professional to help represent them in court as they seek out appropriate compensation for all of the injustice and harm they were forced to endure.
It is usually easy to recognize physical and sexual abuse against elders because there are often physical injuries to support the abuse that occurred. However, emotional abuse, neglect, and financial abuse are a little harder to prove. The most obvious sign that this more subtle form of abuse is occurring is a change in the behavior of the resident. If the resident begins to develop depression and anxiety, if they become quieter and they start practicing repetitive actions such as pacing then there are strong chances they are suffering from some form of abuse in their home.
Visiting often is the best way to ensure that a person’s family member is being well taken care of. If a person suspects neglect and improper treatment, they should reach out to a lawyer to help them collect the required pieces of evidence to hold the facility legally responsible for their misconduct.