Has your loved one been a victim of nursing home abuse or neglect in Tampa, FL? The physical and emotional damage caused by nursing home abuse can change your family’s life forever. You deserve an experienced Tampa nursing home abuse lawyer to help you fight for money to cover medical bills, move to a safe facility, and account for your loved one’s pain and suffering.
Our attorneys at Winters & Yonker Personal Injury Lawyers have over 119 years of experience between us. We’ve recovered tens of millions of dollars on behalf of families like yours.
How Can Winters & Yonker Personal Injury Lawyers Help With a Nursing Home Abuse Claim in Tampa?
Putting a family member in a nursing home isn’t an easy decision. Most people decide to trust a nursing home in order to keep their loved ones safe and healthy. It’s devastating to find out that nursing care has had the opposite effect.
Filing a civil lawsuit for financial compensation may be the only way to get justice. An experienced Tampa personal injury attorney can help you hold the responsible parties accountable.
When you trust Winters & Yonker Personal Injury Lawyers to handle your case, we will:
- Help you move your loved one to a safe location
- Conduct an independent investigation into the nursing home and its staff
- Help you understand your legal options for recovering compensation
- Identify all parties who are legally responsible for the abuse
- Negotiate with the insurance companies and defense teams for a fair settlement deal
- Fight for you in the courtroom if necessary to get justice
To learn more about the benefits of legal representation, call our Tampa personal injury lawyers to schedule a free case review today.
How Common Is Nursing Home Abuse?
Elder abuse is a serious problem in the U.S. and across the state of Florida. As many as five million older adults experience some type of abuse each year.
Florida ranks 13th in the nation for nursing home abuse. According to one study, 9.19% of all nursing home residents in Florida reported pressure ulcers. Florida nursing homes earned a collective “B-” rating when it comes to resident hospitalizations and their ability to keep residents mobile.
Still, these aren’t always signs of abuse or neglect. Data on nursing home abuse is lacking. The unfortunate fact is that many cases of nursing home abuse are never reported.
Nursing Home Abuse Can Take Many Forms in Tampa, FL
At Winters & Yonker Personal Injury Lawyers, our attorneys know that abuse comes in many forms. Not all cases involve outright physical violence–and no type of abuse is acceptable.
Each type of nursing home abuse case presents its own set of complications–and our attorneys in Tampa are prepared to help you prove your case.
The common types of nursing home abuse include:
Physical abuse is the most obvious type of abuse. It’s never acceptable for a caregiver to hit, slap, or kick a nursing home resident. Physical abuse can also involve improperly restraining a nursing home resident without any valid reason.
Sexual abuse can involve outright rape and unwanted sexual contact. It can also include forcing a victim to watch sexual content or making inappropriate remarks of a sexual nature.
Not all abuse causes direct physical injury. Emotional abuse, however, can lead to both mental and physical problems.
Emotional abuse can include belittling, humiliating, and even threatening your loved one. Forced isolation can also amount to emotional abuse.
Some of the warning signs of nursing home abuse include:
- Regressive behaviors, such as rocking, self-hugging, and thumb-sucking
- Personality changes
- Weight loss when victims become depressed and refuse proper nutrition
Because the signs of emotional abuse can be more subtle, they can be much more difficult to detect. Your loved one may also be embarrassed to report the abuse.
Residents in long-term care facilities can be susceptible to financial abuse. Residents who suffer from memory issues may not even be aware that this abuse is happening.
Some signs that your loved one is being financially exploited include:
- Missing possessions
- Unexplained financial transactions
- New credit cards opened in your loved one’s name
- Changes to beneficiary designations on retirement and investment accounts
- Changes to your loved one’s will
Financial abuse can take on many forms. Often, these cases involve identity theft that can haunt your family for years to come.
Nursing Home Negligence and Neglect
Nursing home residents also suffer when those charged with their care are neglectful.
Examples of nursing home neglect include:
- Failure to supervise residents who are susceptible to wandering off
- Unsanitary conditions
- Failure to provide proper nutrition and medications
- Failure to call a doctor when called for
- Failure to move immobile patients regularly, which can lead to bed sores and infections
Some types of nursing home neglect are intentional. Others are more passive and tend to happen because of understaffing, lack of funding, and overworked employees.
How Valuable Is My Tampa Nursing Home Abuse Case?
The value of your personal injury claim will depend on:
- The nature of the harm your loved one has suffered
- The nature of the at-fault party’s actions
- Medical treatment costs and other out-of-pocket expenses
- The types of pain, suffering, and trauma your loved one endured
- Whether the abuse is likely to cause permanent damage
- How the need to care for your loved one impacted your earnings
If you have questions about your case value, contact Winters & Yonker Personal Injury Lawyers today. We’ve helped countless clients get fair compensation and are ready to assist your family in any way we can.
What Types of Damages Are Available to Victims of Nursing Home Abuse in Tampa?
Your family may be entitled to compensation for:
- Medical expenses made necessary because of the abuse
- The cost of moving to a safe nursing facility
- Rehabilitation and therapy
- Lost wages if you miss work to help with your loved one’s care
- Attorney’s fees and costs
- Restitution if your case involved financial abuse
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Depression, anxiety, fear, and PTSD
- Reduced life expectancy
- Diminished quality of life
- Damage to personal relationships
Courts may also award punitive damages to punish the abusive party for their intentional wrongdoing.
Identifying the Serious Long-Term Consequences of Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect
Some of the most common long-term consequences of nursing home abuse include:
- Cuts, lacerations, and bruising
- Internal injuries caused by dehydration or malnutrition
- Pressure ulcers or bed sores
- Broken bones
- Brain damage
- Worsened medical conditions
- Reduced life expectancy
- Financial instability
- Wrongful death of a loved one
Any type of nursing home abuse can cause serious mental health issues. Many victims struggle with severe depression, PTSD, anxiety, and fear. These mental health problems can persist long after the victim’s physical injuries have healed.
Why Is Nursing Home Abuse So Common in Tampa?
Nursing home abuse happens for many different reasons.
Some of the root causes of nursing home abuse and neglect include:
- The nursing home’s failure to properly screen caregivers and employees
- Failure to adequately supervise nursing home employees
- Poor management and oversight
- Failure to provide proper medical equipment
- Unsanitary conditions
- Failure to adequately supervise nursing home residents with Alzheimer’s and dementia
- Negligent security
Identifying the cause of the abuse can help us determine who is ultimately responsible for paying your damages.
Who Can Be Held Responsible for Nursing Home Abuse in Tampa, Florida?
Of course, anyone who intentionally abuses a resident in an assisted living facility can be held responsible. Perpetrators of nursing home abuse can face consequences in both civil and criminal court.
That said, many other parties could be liable for your damages from a legal perspective, including:
- The company that owns the nursing home
- Doctors, nurses, and healthcare providers who commit medical malpractice
- Government agencies responsible for oversight and licensing
How Long Do I Have To File a Lawsuit Based on Nursing Home Abuse in Florida?
The statute of limitations in personal injury cases is typically two years. You have two years from the date of the abuse to take legal action.
However, there are exceptions. You may have more time if there was no realistic way to discover the abuse right away or if the defendant is also facing criminal charges. Contacting an attorney as soon as you can is the best way to protect your legal right to file a claim.
Reach Out for a Free Consultation With an Experienced Tampa Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Today
Do you have questions about your legal rights or suspect that nursing home abuse is occurring? Contact an experienced Tampa nursing home abuse lawyer today. At Winters & Yonker Personal Injury Lawyers, your consultation is always free of charge.