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Nursing Home Abuse

Buffalo Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer

Compassionate Legal Help for Neglected & Abused Elderly in Western New York

When you place your elderly loved one in a nursing home, you trust that the staff will take care of their needs and ensure their safety. Unfortunately, many nursing homes and assisted living facilities fail to provide adequate care, and some even subject their residents to abuse and neglect.

If you suspect that your loved one has been the victim of nursing home abuse or neglect, you need to act quickly to protect them. At The Russell Friedman Law Group, LLP, our Buffalo nursing home abuse attorneys can help you take legal action against the responsible parties.

For an initial consultation with one of our attorneys, call (716) 335-9239or contact us online .

What is Nursing Home Abuse?

Nursing home abuse refers to any type of harmful or improper treatment of residents in long-term care facilities such as nursing homes, assisted living facilities, or skilled nursing facilities. These abuses can be physical, emotional, psychological, or financial, and they can have serious consequences for the health and well-being of elderly residents.

Some common forms of nursing home abuse include:

  • Physical Abuse: This involves the use of force that results in bodily injury, pain, or impairment. It may include hitting, pushing, kicking, restraining, or any other form of physical assault.
  • Emotional/Psychological Abuse: Emotional abuse involves behaviors that inflict mental anguish, distress, or fear. This can include verbal threats, insults, intimidation, humiliation, or isolation from family and friends.
  • Neglect: Neglect occurs when caregivers fail to provide the necessary care, attention, and assistance required to meet the basic needs of residents. This can include neglecting personal hygiene, withholding food or medication, or failing to provide adequate supervision.
  • Financial Exploitation: Financial abuse involves the unauthorized or improper use of a resident's funds, property, or assets for the benefit of another individual. This can include stealing money, forging signatures, coercing residents into signing over property or assets, or improperly charging for services.
  • Sexual Abuse: Sexual abuse involves any non-consensual sexual contact or activity with a resident. This can include sexual assault, rape, unwanted touching, or coerced sexual acts.
  • Medication Mismanagement: This occurs when caregivers administer medication improperly or withhold medication intentionally, leading to adverse effects on the resident's health or well-being.
  • Verbal Abuse: Verbal abuse involves the use of spoken or written words, gestures, or actions that cause emotional pain, distress, or intimidation. This can include yelling, insults, ridicule, or threats.

Common Signs of Nursing Home Abuse

Recognizing the signs of nursing home abuse is crucial for ensuring the safety and well-being of elderly residents. Here are some common signs to look out for:

  • Unexplained injuries: Bruises, cuts, burns, or fractures that cannot be adequately explained by the resident or staff may indicate physical abuse.
  • Changes in behavior: Sudden changes in behavior, such as withdrawal, depression, anxiety, or agitation, may be signs of emotional or psychological abuse.
  • Poor hygiene: Unkempt appearance, dirty clothing or bedding, and strong body odor may indicate neglect.
  • Malnutrition or dehydration: Significant weight loss, signs of dehydration (such as dry mouth, cracked lips, or sunken eyes), or unexplained changes in appetite may be signs of neglect or inadequate care.
  • Untreated medical conditions: Failure to provide necessary medical care, delays in seeking medical attention, or withholding medication may indicate neglect.
  • Fear of staff or caregivers: Residents may exhibit fear, anxiety, or reluctance to speak openly around certain staff members, which could be indicative of abuse.
  • Financial discrepancies: Sudden changes in financial status, unauthorized withdrawals from bank accounts, missing personal items, or unusual purchases may suggest financial exploitation.
  • Sexual behavior or infections: Bruises, bleeding, torn clothing, or sexually transmitted infections (STIs) may indicate sexual abuse.
  • Bedsores or pressure ulcers: These painful wounds, especially if they are recurring or left untreated, may indicate neglect and lack of proper care.
  • Unexplained changes in legal documents: Sudden changes to wills, powers of attorney, or other legal documents may suggest financial exploitation.

Who is Liable for Nursing Home Abuse in New York?

In New York, several parties can be held liable for nursing home abuse, depending on the circumstances surrounding the abuse. These parties may include:

  • Nursing Home Facilities: Nursing homes have a legal obligation to provide a safe and secure environment for their residents. If a nursing home fails to uphold this duty of care and residents are abused or neglected, the facility itself can be held liable. This liability can extend to the nursing home's management, staff, and ownership.
  • Individual Caregivers and Staff Members: Individual caregivers, including nurses, aides, physicians, and other staff members, can be held personally liable for nursing home abuse if they engage in abusive or neglectful behavior. This may include physical abuse, emotional abuse, neglect, or financial exploitation of residents.
  • Management and Supervisory Personnel: Managers, administrators, and supervisors who are aware of abuse or neglect occurring within a nursing home facility but fail to take appropriate action to prevent or address it may also be held liable for their negligence.
  • Corporate Entities: In cases where nursing home abuse is the result of systemic issues within a corporate-owned nursing home chain, such as inadequate staffing, lack of training, or policies that prioritize profit over resident care, the corporate entity that owns or operates the nursing home may be held liable for the abuse.
  • Contracted Service Providers: Nursing homes often contract with outside service providers, such as medical equipment suppliers, therapy services, or food service companies. If these contracted service providers engage in abusive or neglectful behavior that harms residents, they may also be held liable for nursing home abuse.
  • Third Parties: In some cases, third parties who are not directly employed by the nursing home but have contact with residents, such as volunteers, visitors, or other residents, may be held liable for abusive or harmful behavior towards residents.

How Our Buffalo Nursing Home Abuse Attorneys Can Help You

At The Russell Friedman Law Group, LLP, we can help you take legal action against the responsible parties and seek compensation for your loved one's medical expenses, pain and suffering, and other damages. Our team can:

  • Conduct a thorough investigation into the abuse or neglect. Our attorneys will review your loved one's medical records, interview witnesses, and consult with medical and nursing home experts. We will work to gather all available evidence of the abuse or neglect and build a strong case on your loved one's behalf.
  • Handle all legal paperwork and court filings. Our attorneys will handle all legal paperwork and court filings in your case, so you can focus on your loved one's needs. We will make sure your case is filed within the applicable statute of limitations and that all paperwork is filled out accurately and on time.
  • Negotiate with the nursing home and their insurance company. Our attorneys are skilled negotiators and can effectively negotiate with the nursing home and their insurance company on your behalf. We will work to reach a fair settlement that compensates your loved one for all their damages.
  • Represent you in court, if necessary. Our attorneys are also skilled litigators and are not afraid to take your case to court, if necessary. We will present a strong case on your loved one's behalf and work to obtain a favorable verdict.

Contact us today at (716) 335-9239 to request an initial consultation.

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