The statute of limitations is the amount of time you have to file a lawsuit. In Georgia, you must bring your case within two years of the abuse incident. If a nursing home abused or neglected a loved one, don’t wait to get legal assistance.
At John Foy & Associates, we can help you prepare and file a strong case. Our attorneys have been helping victims and their families for over 20 years. We handle each claim with respect and compassion for our clients. To start with a free consultation, call (404) 400-4000 or contact us online.
What Happens if You Pass the Statute of Limitations
Don’t ignore the statute of limitations. If you try to file a case after the deadline has passed, you’ll probably be unable to pursue any compensation. In most situations, the courts will dismiss your case.
You can stay on track by working with a nursing home abuse lawyer. Your attorney will pay close attention to crucial deadlines as they build your lawsuit. They’ll also fight for a fair settlement, which might allow you to avoid a trial.
Building a strong lawsuit takes time, so it’s best to start thinking about your options today. Speak with an experienced lawyer about the steps you should take. If you wait too long, it will hurt your legal case and compensation options.
If your deadline has already passed, don’t lose all hope. There could be exceptions that apply to your case, and an attorney will likely know more than you do. Call a lawyer who can investigate and determine the choices available to you.
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Details that Might Affect the Filing Deadline
The statute of limitations is often strict with nursing home abuse claims. However, there are cases where you could have more time than you realize.
The following factors might affect the deadline to file:
- The abuse injuries happened at a later date than you thought.
- The resident is mentally or physically unable to testify.
- The nursing home did not provide accurate information about the neglect or abuse.
- Details about when the abuse happened or when it was discovered are uncertain.
If a government agency owns the nursing home, that can affect your filing deadline. Unfortunately, that would leave you with even less time to take action. According to Georgia’s state tort claims policy, you must provide notice of a lawsuit within 12 months and file a claim in as little as six months.
Speak with an attorney to make sure you file within the deadline. Your lawyer can see if there are any exceptions that relate to your case.
At John Foy & Associates, we can determine your options and help you get started. Plus, the consultation is always free. To get your free consultation, call (404) 400-4000 or contact us online.
What You Should Do Before Filing Your Lawsuit
Before you file your case, there are several steps to take. That’s why it’s best to get started as early as possible.
Here are some actions to take after nursing home abuse happens.
Document Signs of Abuse
Your case will need to include proof of the harm that occurred. That includes gathering evidence of abuse or neglect like:
- Pictures of injuries or poor housing situations
- Statements from the victim
- Statements from eyewitnesses or former staff
- Medical records that hint at abuse
- Records from the nursing home
Your lawyer can help you gather the right information to support your claim. Family members should listen to the victim and take their concerns seriously.
Reporting the Abuse
Loved ones can report elder abuse to several agencies. Call or file a complaint online with the Georgia Department of Community Health (DCH)’s Healthcare Facility Regulation (HFR). You can also contact the state’s Long-Term Care Ombudsman and the Department of Human Services’ Division of Aging Services.
If the nursing home resident is in immediate danger, call the police. Don’t wait to get help if your loved one needs emergency care.
Talking to an Attorney
Also, speak with a lawyer who has experience with nursing home abuse. Your lawyer can review your case and determine your options. They’ll look over the nursing home’s licenses, inspection records, and more.
It’s never too early to start building your case. An experienced nursing home abuse lawyer can help you get started and pay attention to deadlines.
Your lawyer will help you gather evidence of the damages. Personal injury damages are all losses the victim suffers from their injuries.
Common damages from nursing home abuse cases include:
- Medical costs of treatment
- Prescription or over-the-counter medications
- Property damage
- Pain and suffering the victim has experienced
Unfortunately, some abuse claims happen after the victim has died. If abuse or neglect led to death, family members might have a wrongful death claim.
Wrongful death damages include:
- Medical bills from the loved one’s last treatment
- Pain and suffering the loved one experienced before they died
- Funeral and burial costs
- Loss of companionship
Family members should speak with an attorney who can help them determine damages. Victims often have much greater damages than they realize. Before accepting any money from the insurance company, talk to a lawyer.
Why Statute of Limitations Exist
Some victims might see the statute of limitations as unfair. These time limits are what the law sees as reasonable for victims to bring a claim.
Victims should have enough time to build a case and fight for their rights. At the same time, defendants must have time to respond and disprove claims if they believe they did no harm. The statute of limitations is what the courts believe works for both sides.
Over time, evidence can disappear, and memories can fade. No matter the deadline for filing your case, it’s best to start immediately. You’ll want to gather evidence while it’s still available and helpful to you.
Speak with a Nursing Home Abuse Attorney for Free Today
Get the legal help you deserve to hold the nursing home accountable. Contact John Foy & Associates today. For a free, no-obligation consultation, call (404) 400-4000 or contact us online.