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Nursing Home Malpractice Attorneys in Orlando

Nursing home malpractice attorneys are here to help you or someone you love when something bad happens in a nursing home.

Millions of Americans are in nursing homes around the country. Our country is aging, and as demographics shift, there is an increased demand for assisted living facilities and homes that offer high-quality medical care. 

For most people, taking care of a parent, grandparent, aunt, or uncle is a serious responsibility. We want the best for them, and go to great lengths to keep them comfortable in their golden years. At some point, however, care for elderly relatives and friends becomes too difficult. It requires professional medical care at a dedicated facility. 

Choosing the right nursing home is often an anxiety-inducing experience. People read reviews and talk to friends to find the best place for their loved one. No matter how nice a nursing home is, there is typically a lot of stress around handing over care.

The vast majority of nursing homes operate with the care and professionalism their clients expect. They are full of caring people who dedicate their time and energy into caring for the elderly. 

However, sometimes mistakes happen, and your relative or someone else you know fails to get the care they deserve.

When nursing home malpractice happens, the results can be devastating.

You need a team of nursing home malpractice attorneys that will fight for you and win you and your relative the justice you deserve. 

How Nursing Home Malpractice Attorneys Identify Negligence & Elder Abuse

When you place someone you love in a nursing home, the expectation is that they will receive a certain standard of care. When that doesn’t happen, their mental and physical well-being is at stake. But what constitutes abuse?

A major issue in many nursing home malpractice cases is that elderly residents and patients, for several reasons, are unable to communicate the negligence or abuse. Here are some things nursing home malpractice attorneys will help you look for:

Signs of Physical Abuse

Physical abuse happens in nursing homes. When we see it, it’s incredibly shocking, but it underscores just how at risk our elderly populations are. When you visit your relative or friend, watch out for:

  • Obvious signs of abuse like bruising, cuts, etc.
  • Evidence or reports of regular trips and falls
  • Evidence of tension between the resident and the people caring for them

Is the person you love in a nursing home visibly afraid of their caregivers? Do they express a desire to leave the facility without specifically mentioning any abuse? They could be scared to say anything for fear of retribution. Remember, after you’re gone, they have to be alone with the nursing home staff again. There is typically no one to protect them.

Don’t just dismiss any injuries as part of getting old and clumsy. There could be some serious abuse or negligence going on. 

Negligent Care 

How can you tell your loved one isn’t getting the care they should? The signs can be hard to see. An expert lawyer will start to help you notice subtle signs of malpractice or negligent care. 

One thing to watch for is fluctuations in weight. Is your mom or grandmother skinnier than normal? Maybe they aren’t getting enough food or are refusing to eat in response to poor care. 

Are they wearing the same clothes time after time when you visit? Does their hair appear oily like it hasn’t been washed in days? 

When you talk to your loved one, you should ask them about their routine and what they do to keep busy. Are they interacting with other people in the nursing home the way they should? Do they have access to windows, a television, fresh air, and other amenities that you are paying for? 

All of these things could point to negligent care, so watch for them when you visit. 

Medical Neglect

Medical neglect is one of the most common forms of nursing home malpractice. Neglect happens when someone on the staff at the nursing home or a visiting doctor or some other medical professional fails in their duty to provide adequate medical care. 

For example, the doctor could prescribe the wrong medicine, overlook obvious symptoms of some sort of condition, or fail to get them urgent medical care when it is warranted. 

When you place your loved one in a nursing home, the assumption is that the medical care will be on point. Sure, the food might not always be five-star, but you expect them to monitor and treat your loved one with good medical care. 

Admittedly, treating elderly patients in a nursing home is complex. They have a variety of conditions that require oftentimes intense treatments. However, when nursing homes fail to give care because they are rushed or cutting corners to save money, it can cost you dearly. 

Good nursing home malpractice attorneys know how to spot medical neglect and pursue damages to right serious wrongs. 

Causes of Nursing Home Malpractice

What leads to nursing home malpractice? Yes, there are some people out there with bad intentions, but those are the exceptions. Certainly, if you find your loved one in the care of someone like that, you should take legal action aggressively. 

On the other hand, however, most people who work at and run nursing homes aren’t malicious. However, despite their best intentions, they are responsible for providing a standard of care to patients. Some people just aren’t meant to run a business, much less a nursing home. 

Here are some of the main causes of nursing home malpractice. 

  • Inadequate Employee Training – It is incumbent upon the nursing home management to train the people working there. Any staff providing care, whether it’s complicated medical care or something as simple as giving someone a shower, must be properly trained. Sometimes, due to staffing constraints, nursing homes let untrained workers interact with patients and bad things happen. 
  • Poor Hiring Practices – The labor market in the U.S. is tight right now. Employers are raising wages and trying to offer more benefits to attract employees. Sometimes, it works, but sometimes companies are hiring people they wouldn’t have five years ago. Failing to properly screen new hires is a big issue in nursing homes. 
  • Low Staffing Levels – When nursing home administrators fail to keep enough staff on duty, risk of malpractice increases. There are fewer people available to attend to patients and, when stressed, it’s easier for them to make mistakes in the care they provide. This is the most common cause of neglect because it is the financial reason why many nursing homes fail to provide proper care.  With less staff, there is less overhead (salaries), but less care. Fewer staff have to care for more patients.

How Nursing Home Malpractice Attorneys can Help

It’s important to realize that signs of malpractice come in many forms. Your loved one may be experiencing medical, emotional, or physical abuse in a bad nursing home. When you suspect something bad is going on, you need a team of nursing home malpractice attorneys that can help. 

Here’s what you should look for:

Experience with Nursing Home Malpractice

Your attorney should specialize in nursing home malpractice cases. The stakes are too high to take a chance on someone with inadequate experience. Ask people you interview about their track record with similar cases and talk about the details of your case to see if things are a good fit. Good attorneys will recite case outcomes to you to give you an idea of what you can expect. 

Prepared to Go to Court

In most nursing home malpractice cases, your lawyer will handle settlement negotiations to cover damages from malpractice. However, should the case go to court, you need an attorney with courtroom experience who will argue your case aggressively before a judge. 

Past Settlements

Talk to the lawyers you interview about their past settlement outcomes. Find out how much your family stands to receive for things like injury, medical recovery costs, and pain and suffering.  Is the lawyer you are considering a trial lawyer who has successfully handled cases and obtained outstaning recoveries?  Check this out before you hire someone.

When to Contact an Attorney

You should start calling nursing home malpractice attorneys the minute you suspect something is wrong. Unfortunately, family members and friends usually discover signs of malpractice long after it started. The signs eventually bubble to the surface, but your loved one may have been suffering for weeks or months. 

Talk to an attorney and explain what’s happening and why you think you may have a medical malpractice case on your hands. They’ll help guide you in what you should do and how to start gathering evidence against liable parties. 

The health and well-being of your loved one is the priority. Qualified attorneys will know how to rectify the situation and get them in a better place before long. 

Leighton Law specializes in Florida nursing home cases. We have a team of nursing home malpractice attorneys ready to help you fight for the justice your loved one deserves. We offer no-obligation consultations to discuss your case and begin to build a strategy to hold the right people accountable. Call us today to hear more about how we can help.

Article by:

John Leighton

A nationally-recognized trial lawyer who handles catastrophic injury and death cases. He manages Leighton Law, P.A. trial lawyers, with offices in Miami and Orlando, Florida. He is President of The National Crime Victim Bar Association, author of the 2-volume textbook,Litigating Premises Security Cases, and past Chairman of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America’s Motor Vehicle, Highway & Premises Liability Section. Having won some of the largest verdicts in Florida history, Mr. Leighton is listed inThe Best Lawyers in America (14 years), “Top Lawyers” in the South Florida Legal Guide (15 years), Top 100 Florida SuperLawyer™ and Florida SuperLawyers (14 years), “Orlando Legal Elite” by Orlando Style magazine, and FloridaTrend magazine “Florida Legal Elite

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