Wheeling Nursing Home Abuse Attorneys
West Virginia Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer
Families across West Virginia trust nursing homes and assisted living facilities to care for our elderly loved ones. Many nursing homes provide excellent physical, emotional and mental care of their residents. At some facilities, however, elderly persons are victimized by the abuse or neglect of nursing home staff and operators.
If your family’s loved one has suffered due to abuse or neglect at a West Virginia nursing home, you may be entitled to hold the facility’s staff responsible. A nursing home abuse or neglect case could provide your family with compensation and justice.
For more than 35 years, the attorneys of Jividen Law Offices, PLLC have worked tirelessly to protect the rights and interests of injury victims. We help our clients secure the financial compensation they need and the justice they deserve. With more than 50 years of combined legal experience, our West Virginia nursing home abuse and neglect lawyers have the experience to handle the most complex and difficult cases.
We take pride in the successful settlements and verdicts we have obtained on behalf of our clients. Our efforts have been recognized with a listing in Super Lawyers for nine consecutive years and membership in the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and the American Institute of Personal Injury Attorneys.
Contact Jividen Law Offices, PLLC today by phone or online. We will set up a free case review with an experienced nursing home abuse lawyer in Wheeling. You can learn more about your family’s legal rights and how our firm may be able to help you seek the compensation and justice your loved one and your family deserve.
What to Do If You Suspect Nursing Home Neglect or Abuse
If you and your family suspect that a loved one has been abused or neglected by a nursing home or its staff, take these steps to help protect your loved one and advocate for his or her legal rights.
- First, if you believe your loved one may be facing imminent harm (for example, you receive a call for help from your loved one), call 911 to have emergency medical services intervene to protect your loved one from any injury.
- If you suspect that more long-term abuse or neglect is taking place, talk to the nursing home’s management about your concerns. The nursing home’s operators may be willing to address the harm or risk of harm that your loved one is facing.
- If the nursing home is unable or unwilling to address your concerns, or if you believe that abuse or neglect is being condoned by the facility’s management, report suspected nursing home abuse or neglect to the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources. Report your abuse or neglect concerns on a 24-hour hotline at 800-352-6513. You can also contact your local county office for the Department of Health and Human Resources.
- Take steps to document proof of the abuse or neglect you believe your loved one is suffering. Your proof might include statements from fellow residents or other staffers at the nursing home, photos of any visible signs of physical abuse, and documentation of unusual changes in your loved one’s or staffers’ behavior. For example, your loved one might become emotionally withdrawn or a staffer might refuse to allow visits with your loved one.
- Have your loved one examined by an independent physician outside the nursing home facility. The physician might identify injuries and harm your loved one has suffered as a result of the abuse or neglect.
- If your loved one’s nursing home is unable or unwilling to remedy the suspected abuse or neglect, begin the process of removing your loved one from that facility. Your loved one can temporarily live with a family member until a new nursing home or assisted living facility is located.
How a West Virginia Nursing Home Abuse Attorney Can Help
You and your family may believe your loved one has suffered from nursing home abuse or neglect. However, it can be difficult to prove that your loved one’s injuries or illnesses were caused by the facility’s abuse or neglect rather than natural causes or unforeseeable accidents.
At Jividen Law Offices, PLLC, our West Virginia nursing home abuse and neglect attorneys can help you and your family pursue your loved one’s case by:
- Conducting our own thorough, independent investigation of your loved one’s case to recover evidence that they have suffered from abuse and/or neglect.
- Helping your family secure your loved one’s safety by working to get the nursing home facility to make changes to end the abuse or neglect. We can also help your family move your loved one to another facility.
- Collaborating with medical and financial experts to help us build a strong, persuasive case of abuse and neglect and establishing the extent of the damages.
- Filing claims for compensation on your family’s behalf and aggressively pursuing a settlement that provides your family with fair and full compensation. We can also help to ensure your loved one’s safety moving forward.
- Preparing your case to go to court, if a negotiated settlement cannot be reached, and advocating before a judge and jury on your family’s behalf.
When you choose Jividen Law Offices, PLLC for your nursing home abuse and neglect case, you can rest assured that you and your family will not have to pay a penny upfront for the legal representation your loved one deserves. We do not get paid unless and until we recover compensation for your family.
Demanding Justice for Your Loved One
No amount of money can undo the physical and emotional harm your loved one has suffered at the hands of an abusive or neglectful nursing home staff. However, your loved one and your family deserve to be compensated for your loved one’s injuries and other financial harm.
In a nursing home abuse and neglect claim, your loved one and your family may be entitled to compensation for these damages:
- Costs of medical treatment, including ER and hospital stays, surgeries and other medical procedures, prescription medication, physical rehab, mental health therapy, mobility/medical equipment, and other out-of-pocket expenses related to treatment
- Lost enjoyment or quality of life, including disabilities or disfigurement and reduced life expectancies
- Pain and suffering, including physical anguish and emotional distress caused by the abuse or neglect
- Damaged or lost property, including property or money taken as part of financial abuse
Your loved one and your family may also be entitled to recover other out-of-pocket expenses, including the costs of moving your loved one to another assisted living facility.
When Nursing Home Abuse Leads to Wrongful Death
Unfortunately, elderly persons who reside in nursing homes are especially vulnerable to serious and life-threatening injuries because of abuse or neglect. All too often, the harm inflicted by nursing home abuse or neglect leads to the loved one’s death.
If your family’s loved one has died because of injuries from nursing home abuse and neglect, your family may be entitled to pursue a wrongful death claim. That claim would be brought against the persons and corporations responsible for the abuse and neglect your loved one experienced.
A wrongful death claim is similar to a personal injury claim that your deceased loved one could have brought had he or she lived. A wrongful death claim is brought by the personal representative of your loved one’s estate, which is usually the administrator or executor. Compensation from a wrongful death claim is paid out to eligible surviving family members, who may include:
- A spouse
- Children, stepchildren, and adopted children
- Parents (including adoptive parents) and siblings
- Any other family member financially dependent on your loved one at the time of their death
Damages that can be recovered in a wrongful death claim include:
- The sorrow and mental anguish experienced by you and your family due to your loved one’s passing
- The loss of your loved one’s companionship, comfort, society and guidance
- Funeral and burial expenses for your loved one
Your family may also be entitled to recover some of the same damages that your loved one could recover if he or she had lived. Those damages include the medical treatment expenses for the last injury or illness, conscious pain and suffering endured prior to death, and lost or damaged property or money.
West Virginia’s Statute of Limitations on Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Claims
Under West Virginia’s statute of limitations, your nursing home abuse or neglect case must be brought within two years of the date of your loved one’s injury, or the last date of injury for ongoing abuse or neglect. If you do not file a lawsuit before the limitations period expires, the court can permanently dismiss your lawsuit.
Common Types of Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect
Most people think nursing home abuse or neglect involves physical violence. However, abuse and neglect can take on many different forms. Some abuse or neglect may involve emotional or mental harm or economic injury.
Common types of nursing home abuse and neglect include:
- Physical abuse or violence, including punching, hitting, pushing, kicking, choking, or restraining, overmedicating or forcibly sedating a nursing home resident
- Emotional and psychological abuse, which may include yelling or cursing at residents, belittling or verbally humiliating residents, treating residents like children, withholding activities and privileges, or threatening physical violence and injury
- Sexual abuse, including rape, unwanted sexual contact, or exposing residents to an abuser
- Financial abuse, including theft of a resident’s property or funds, or manipulation of a resident to wrongfully obtain property or money.
- Neglect, which involves the intentional, reckless, or negligent failure to provide for a resident’s needs, including food, water, hygiene, clean living spaces and safety
Signs of Neglect and Abuse
Not every sign of nursing home abuse or neglect involves visible injury. Many signs can involve changes in a victim’s behavior or changes in their financial or personal affairs. Common signs of abuse and neglect of nursing home residents include:
- Pressure ulcers/bedsores
- Bruises and other signs of physical restraint
- Unexplained and/or frequent infections
- New sexually transmitted infections
- Frequent illnesses or illnesses not reported to the resident’s physician and family
- Falls, bone fractures, and head injuries
- Rapid weight loss or weight gain
- Unexplained injuries or multiple injuries in various stages of healing
- Signs of heavy medication or sedation
- Poor hygiene
- Unsanitary living conditions, including dirty bedding or clothing
- Unusual or sudden changes in behavior, including rocking, mumbling, sucking, fear of being touched, withdrawal, depression or agitation
- Reluctance to speak in the presence of staff members, or unwillingness to be left alone.
- Broken eyeglasses or torn clothing
- Missing personal property
- Unexplained expenses or withdrawals from the resident’s financial accounts, or changes to account access or named beneficiaries
Talk to a Nursing Abuse Lawyer in Wheeling, West Virginia, Now
If you and your family have a loved one who has been the victim of nursing home abuse or neglect, your loved one and your family deserve to seek financial compensation and justice. Schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with a nursing home abuse and neglect lawyer from Jividen Law Offices, PLLC. We can discuss the details of your case, and you will learn more about your legal rights and options.
Call us today or contact us online. Our skilled legal team is ready to help your family successfully pursue accountability for the harm your loved one has suffered.