Consulting a lawyer can be an intimidating prospect. Not only is taking a case to court confusing, but the abuse you or your loved one have experienced adds another layer of anxiety, and taking the step to hold the nursing home accountable can feel overwhelming. However, there are resources out there, including a recent Super Lawyer article featuring Art Gharibian where he discussed the signs indicating that you should consult a lawyer.
From the article: “It’s often tough, from a layperson’s perspective, to know if what’s happening is enough for a lawsuit,” says nursing home abuse attorney Art Gharibian.
Identifying Nursing Home Abuse
Abuse can take many forms. Neglect, physical abuse, sexual abuse, and financial abuse all constitute abuse under the law and can be identified by outward signs like bruising, a change in behavior, missing funds, worsening health issues or the presence of new health issues, and more. It is important to be able to identify abuse in all its forms in order to protect yourself and your loved ones.
From the article:
Red flags and warning signs of physical abuse or neglect to watch out for include:
- Bed sores or pressure ulcers, which are preventable with adequate care;
- Sudden or drastic weight loss, which could indicate malnutrition ;
- Unexplained bruises or broken bones;
- Sudden behavioral changes or mood swings;
- Unsanitary living conditions or lack of personal hygiene.
- When to Consult a Lawyer
Most of the time, neglect and abuse can be addressed by simply taking the problem to the nursing staff or the facility administrators. Though a lack of staff is often a problem, therefore allowing things like regular hydration and activity attendance to fall through the cracks, typically a reminder from you or a note in a chart can help solve the problem.
Consulting a Lawyer
However, if the problems persist, or if the staff and administrators are slow to take action or don’t address the problem at all, then a legal consultation is necessary. Additionally, if you notice clear signs of physical or sexual abuse, or obvious signs of neglect, consult a lawyer and they can help you determine the best next steps.
Frequent visits and phone calls to your loved one in a nursing facility are vital to ensuring quality care. However, neglect and abuse need to be addressed sooner rather than later, and contacting a lawyer, even just for a consultation to determine how much of a case you have, is an important part of protecting yourself and your loved one.
If you or a loved one have been the victim of neglect or abuse, call Gharibian Law (877-460-1187) today for a FREE consultation and the best legal representation.