January 30 , 2023 | Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer
For most Wisconsin families, nursing homes are good, safe places to send their loved ones who need specialized care in their older years. You can usually expect your loved one to receive excellent care. However, some nursing homes in Milwaukee, Oak Creek, Mount Pleasant, and other Wisconsin communities fail to meet their obligations. They may even abuse or neglect the person you entrusted to their care. If this has happened to you, our Wisconsin nursing home abuse lawyers at Martin Law Office, S.C. can help.
What Is Nursing Home Abuse?
Nursing home abuse is intentionally hurting someone who lives in a nursing home. Nursing home abuse is illegal in Wisconsin, and you should have an attorney hold the facility accountable in a lawsuit if it happens. Nursing home abuse is related to nursing home negligence, which is when the facility fails to follow the standard of care.
What Are The Signs Of Nursing Home Abuse?
Nursing home abuse can be seen in several ways. The first step to protecting your loved ones is to look for the following signs of abuse:
Markings Or Bruises
The clearest sign of nursing home abuse is a bruise or mark on your loved one. The National Center on Elder Abuse says that hitting, striking, pushing, slapping, or shaking someone may leave bruises or markings. Also, it is possible that a person could have markings on them from being restrained.
Change In Behavior
Not every sign of nursing home abuse is physical. If your loved one has a marked change in their behavior, it could be a warning sign. For example, are they suddenly withdrawn or depressed? It could be a sign of abuse. However, they also could have an underlying mental or physical condition causing the problem. Have them checked out by their doctor as soon as you can.
Unexplained Medical Issues
A common sign of sexual abuse in a nursing home is a venereal disease or a mysterious infection. Note that sexual abuse can happen between nursing home residents or because of a staff member. In addition, if tests show that a person has contracted a sexually transmitted disease, it could be a sign of nursing home abuse.
You can pick up on possible nursing home abuse by watching how staff and residents interact with your loved one.
Of course, each of the symptoms mentioned here could have other explanations. For instance, an older person in a nursing home could simply fall and have a bruise on their arm and hip. However, family members should always watch for signs of abuse. If you see one or more symptoms of possible abuse, you should talk to the administrator as soon as possible.
Reporting Nursing Home Abuse In Wisconsin And Filing A Lawsuit
If you notice your loved one has signs of mental or physical abuse at the nursing home, they could be a victim of nursing home abuse. Therefore, you should collect as much evidence as possible to support a future nursing home abuse lawsuit. Collecting evidence is the first step to filing a lawsuit. This includes taking photographs of injuries that your loved one has suffered. Also, if your loved one can communicate the allegations of abuse, it could help to take a video of them.
Next, speak to the nursing home administrator immediately, and they should immediately begin an internal investigation. Also, report the abuse allegations to the authorities in Wisconsin. You should reach out to the Division of Quality Assurance in the Wisconsin Department of Health Services. They are required to perform an investigation and let you know their findings.
You also should contact a Wisconsin nursing home abuse attorney who often handles these complicated cases. They will let you know if you have a claim and what your legal options are.
Who Can File A Wisconsin Nursing Home Abuse Case?
Not just anyone can file a nursing home abuse lawsuit in Wisconsin. You need to have legal standing to file a suit. While the person allegedly abused could file the case, a family member usually does so. However, the abused person’s legal guardian can also do so.
The estate could file a lawsuit if your loved one dies from alleged nursing home abuse. Or, the immediate family member of the deceased can file a wrongful death lawsuit.
What Can A Wisconsin Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Do?
Nursing home abuse lawsuits are usually complex. The last thing a nursing home wants to do is admit there was abuse and pay a large settlement. But a skilled nursing home abuse attorney can help overcome the case’s difficulties. Your attorney will work through the various parts of a nursing home abuse lawsuit, including pleadings, discovery, settlement negotiations, trial, and appeal.
How Will A Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Determine Liability?
Proving nursing home abuse hinges on several factors, including where the nursing home abuse happened and who caused it. The people who could face paying a settlement or judgment in your nursing home abuse case include the caregiver, nursing home, elder care home, medical professional, and many other third parties.
Proving the case means showing the party did not follow their duty of care. Or they failed to act prudently and reasonably. If this can be proven, you could recover compensation in the lawsuit.
Nursing Home Abuse Statute Of Limitations In Wisconsin
You usually have only three years from the date of discovery of abuse to file a nursing home abuse lawsuit. However, there are a few exceptions. Your Wisconsin nursing home abuse attorney will talk to you about filing deadlines.
Talk To A Wisconsin Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Today
Usually, we send our loved ones to nursing homes to receive expert care as they age. In most cases, nursing home residents are treated well and get the care they need. However, sometimes things go awry, and a nursing home resident is abused. If that happens, you should consider legal action. Please contact our Wisconsin nursing home abuse lawyer at Martin Law Office, S.C., now for assistance with your case.