When an elder enters a nursing home or other assisted-living facility, the elder and his or her family made that difficult decision based on the elder’s need to receive the specialized care offered by the facility. Sadly, in too many cases, elders in nursing homes receive substandard care or are abused or neglected by the very people who are entrusted with the responsibility of taking care of them.
Sometimes, injury, illness, infection—or even death— occurs in a nursing home because the home fails to provide the legally-required level care. If the elder suffered harm that meets the legal standards of negligence, a civil action can be filed in court to recover monetary damages.
What Is Nursing Home Negligence?
Negligence is a legal term that generally means a failure to take reasonable care that causes harm or injury to another person. Michigan nursing homes and other assisted living facilities have a legal duty to provide a reasonable level of care to residents. That includes protecting elders from neglect and abuse and maintaining a safe environment for them. If that duty is breached, and an elder is harmed as a result, the facility may be liable for compensatory damages. In Michigan, nursing home negligence may, at times, be considered to be a form of medical malpractice, depending on the specific act or omission that occurs.
Nursing homes can breach the duty of care to residents in many different ways. Examples include:
- Failure to provide necessary or adequate medical treatment, including medication
- Neglecting to keep the facility reasonably safe and free of hazards
- Failing to keep the facility secure to prevent residents from wandering off
- Negligent hiring, training, or supervising of employees
- Failure to adequately supervise and assist residents
- Inadequate health and safety policies
- Allowing preventable bed sores to develop
Who Can Bring an Action for Nursing Home Negligence or Medical Malpractice?
In the event of injuries, illness, or infection caused by negligence or medical malpractice in a nursing home, the elder can bring a civil action in court. Depending on the circumstances, the action may also be brought by family members or a personal representative or guardian. No matter who files the action, it is the rights of the elder that are protected or compensation sought for harm done to the elder.
Nursing Home Wrongful Death
If an elder dies in a nursing home because of negligence or medical malpractice, the elder’s family may be able to bring a wrongful death action against those responsible. A wrongful death claim can include damages for conscious pain and suffering of the deceased elder before death, as well as compensation for the family for loss of their loved one.
BRMM Offers an Exceptional Combination of Skill and Experience in Both Elder Law and Litigation
At Barron, Rosenberg, Mayoras & Mayoras, our elder law attorneys and personal injury litigators work closely together on any matter that may involve negligence in a nursing home. Even if an elder’s circumstances don’t lead to a court action, our full-service elder law division, The Center for Elder Law, can help with any situation in which your loved one is not receiving the care he or she needs and deserves. If litigation becomes necessary, we will apply our aggressive courtroom skills to get the compensation your loved one and your family deserve.
Our compassion, commitment, experience, and skill set us apart. We help clients throughout southeastern Michigan. If your elder loved one is not receiving the care he or she needs and deserves, call us at 248.641.7070 or complete our online form to set up a free initial consultation.