Can I Sue a Nursing Home for Wrongful Death?
By Chris Dixon
Nursing homes are designed to keep the elderly safe and provide a warm and welcoming environment for aging family members to retire to, but sometimes, a facility or caregiver’s negligence can ruin this. If you suspect that the nursing home that your deceased family member lived in contributed to their death, or an employee’s negligence caused their death, it’s essential to consult an experienced lawyer about the situation and determine whether you could be eligible to sue the nursing home for wrongful death.
What is Nursing Home Negligence?
Nursing homes are required to provide a certain standard of care to residents in their facility. If a nursing home fails to meet this level of care and causes an individual’s death, the negligent caregiver and the nursing home could face legal repercussions. If the immediate relatives of a deceased nursing home resident believe that the nursing home caused their family member’s death, they could be eligible to file a suit against the nursing home and sue the nursing home for wrongful death.
If the victim’s caregiver gave the resident an improper dose of medication, failed to monitor the resident’s safety, ignored the status of existing or potential conditions, or was negligent in some other way, the victim’s family could sue the nursing home for wrongful death. It can be difficult to prove the nursing home’s liability, but with an experienced lawyer by your side, the caregiver or facility can be held liable for the victim’s pain and suffering. An autopsy is a common element involved with wrongful death cases that can provide detailed information on how the victim died, including when it happened, what caused it, and whether there were other factors involved. Other types of evidence that can be used to prove liability when suing a caregiver or nursing home for wrongful death include:
- Past medical records
- Witness reports
- Proof of past issues with the facility
- Evidence that the nursing home isn’t providing the required level of care to other residents
No one should have to go through losing a family member because of a caregiver or nursing home’s negligence, but if it does happen, it’s vital to have a lawyer by your side to protect the details of the accident, gather compelling evidence, and fight for your case against the negligent nursing home.
Nursing Home Reform Act
More than 40% of nursing home residents have reported abuse, and 90% of residents have stated that they or another resident have experienced neglect in their facility. The most common types of nursing home negligence include failure to provide basic needs, medication errors, neglect, and financial abuse. Nursing home negligence is more common than people might think and has the potential to cause serious injuries or death depending on the circumstances.
Under the Nursing Home Reform Act, nursing homes are required to provide a certain level of care to residents. If this standard of care isn’t provided, the facility and its caregivers could face revocation of their medical license, fines, and be required to compensate the victim’s surviving family members for damages.
A common dilemma of immediate relatives of victims is not knowing whether they have a valid case to sue the nursing home their loved one resided in for the victim’s death. The Nursing Home Reform Act makes it easier to prove the nursing home’s negligence and determine the eligibility of a resident’s surviving family members to file a wrongful death claim.
Nursing Home Negligence Wrongful Death Suits
Nursing home laws differ across the U.S. but have similar requirements for how nursing home facilities and caregivers must operate. If the immediate family members of a nursing home resident believe that a facility’s negligence caused the victim’s death, the family can sue the nursing home for damages. Typically, recoverable damages include lost wages, funeral and burial expenses, and loss of consortium that surviving family members faced because of the victim’s death, but if a survivorship claim is submitted, the victim’s relatives can recover any damages that the victim suffered prior to their death because of the nursing home’s negligence. It can be overwhelming to figure out if you are eligible to sue a nursing home for your family member’s sudden death, but an experienced wrongful death can assess your case, determine eligibility, and provide support against the negligent nursing home and their insurance company.
Speak with a Wrongful Death Lawyer About Your Nursing Home Negligence Case Today
When you lose a family member because of another person’s negligence, it can be painful and stressful to deal with. Nursing homes are supposed to care for and protect the elderly, not cause harm. If you have reason to believe that the nursing home that your family member was a resident at caused their unexpected death, contact the Dixon Injury Firm today to discuss your case. Our Wrongful Death Lawyers understand how traumatizing it can be to lose a family member because of another person’s negligence and are committed to doing everything in their power to recover full compensation for victims and their surviving family members.