Tuscaloosa, AL- In spite of all the work a family does to find and safe and well-staffed Alabama nursing home for their elderly loved one, they can be abused or neglected. It’s a sad fact that can sometimes be avoided but not always. With  nearly one in ten elderly persons admitting to being abused or neglected by a caregiver, it is important they and their loved ones understand what their rights are and what they need to do to get justice.

When you suspect an injury, illness or death can be attributed to the abuse or neglect in a nursing home you must take action. First, you must report your suspicions to the administration of that facility so they can investigate and take corrective measures. Then you need to contact the Long-Term Care Ombudsman in the state and report the abuse or neglect.

If your loved one was harmed or died as a result of abuse or neglect, they and your family may be eligible to receive compensation for any medical and funeral costs incurred as a result. There are a number of ways to go about getting compensation so it’s best to speak with an Alabama nursing home abuse attorney to determine the best route for you to take.

The majority of nursing home abuse or neglect lawsuits are settled long before any parties head to court through negotiations between the victim and the nursing home. In many cases, these negotiations will result in an agreeable settlement for the victim or their family.

There are other times when the initial offer a victim receives is far less than is necessary to cover their medical costs. It’s not unusual for a victim to get a low-ball offer in the first stages of their personal injury or wrongful death claim. When this is the case and Alabama nursing home abuse attorney can explain alternatives a victims has to acquire a just settlement.

Mediation and arbitration are less expensive alternatives to a lengthy civil court trial and typically yield fair settlements. During the mediation process all the interested parties meet with a mediator to discuss their needs and wants and come to a mutual decision on the final settlement. Arbitration is a more formal process that works much like mediation, but an arbiter will make a decision on the case and their decision is final and legally binding.

When a nursing home abuse victim is unhappy with the results of pre-trial negotiations or mediation, then their next option is to file and nursing home abuse or neglect lawsuit in civil court. Court cases can be more costly and judgments take longer but often result in higher settlement amounts.

It’s so disheartening to see your elderly loved one suffer at the hands of another, and this an understandably difficult time for a family. But it should be some consolation that there are ways to stop the abuse and seek justice on behalf of your elderly loved one. Before making decisions, you should contact an Alabama nursing home abuse attorney to discuss your case. They will listen to the facts and decide the best way to approach you nursing home abuse or neglect claim.