Older adults are more at risk for severe slip and fall accident injuries. When an injury happens in a nursing home, you might wonder how to handle it. If you or a loved one were injured in a nursing home accident, it’s important to know your options.
If the nursing home was negligent, you can likely file an insurance claim or lawsuit. It’s crucial to act quickly before the statute of limitations runs out. You’ll also need to prepare for the nursing home or insurance company’s defense.
Nursing home accidents are complicated from a legal standpoint. If you or a loved one were victims, contact a trusted nursing home accident lawyer for help. Call John Foy & Associates at (404) 400-4000 or contact us online for a free consultation to go over your legal options today.
Causes of Slips and Falls in Nursing Homes
Nursing homes and their staff have duties to protect residents. The company must also ensure the premises is safe for everyone on the property. If the nursing home fails in its duty, it could be responsible for an accident.
Slip and fall accidents often happen when a hazard is present. Someone might fall because of:
- Wet or slippery floors
- Items left on the ground
- Lack of walkers, canes, wheelchairs, or other walking-assistive equipment
- Electrical cords left out
- Curled or ripped rugs or carpeting
- No ramps or handrails
- Lack of staff help getting around the home
- Poor or inadequate lighting
If a slip and fall happens because of staff negligence, the nursing home might be liable for the costs. The owner or staff of any property must watch for potential slip and fall hazards. When older adults live on the property, the risk of falls increases exponentially.
Nursing home slips and falls can also occur when staff neglect residents. For example, a resident might fall because they were left unattended while walking around. Or, staff members might not check regularly enough to clean up spills or other hazards.
Abuse and Neglect in Nursing Homes
A slip and fall is just one type of accident that might happen in a nursing home. Unfortunately, neglect and abuse can happen in other ways.
According to the Georgia Department of Human Services’ Division of Aging Services, older and disabled adult abuse is one of the “most undetected and underreported” issues in the U.S. There can be many reasons for this, including:
- Largely understaffed nursing homes
- Long hours and staff burnout
- Poor or too-little management
- Lack of supervision for residents
- Improper training
- Intentional abuse or neglect
While many caregivers are passionate about their jobs, neglect still happens. Even well-meaning staff can become negligent under poor management or frustrating working conditions. But nursing home accidents due to negligence are never acceptable.
Injuries from Nursing Home Accidents
Slip and fall accidents can cause severe injuries, especially in elderly residents. After the fall, it’s important to document the injuries and how they happened. If you have a legal case, you’ll need evidence of the accident.
Injuries from nursing home accidents can include:
- Hip fractures
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBI)
- Spinal cord injuries
- Broken arms, wrists, or other bones
- Severe bruising
- Strains and sprains
- Neck and back injuries
- Internal organ damage
The recovery from a nursing home accident can be lengthy and expensive. Victims might need surgery, physical therapy, or other medical treatment. Certain health conditions can make the recovery even harder—or even life-threatening.
Knowing Who’s Responsible for a Nursing Home Injury
Nursing home residents have rights under the Official Code of Georgia Annotated (OCGA) §31-8-100, the Bill of Rights for Residents of Long-Term Care Facilities. Also, businesses must “exercise ordinary care” for those who come onto the premises. If injuries happen because of negligence, the owner or occupier is responsible for the damages.
After a nursing home accident, the nursing home could be liable. You might be able to file an insurance claim against the business. If the insurance company won’t settle, you might need to take your case to court.
Nursing home accident cases are complex. If you or a family member suffered injuries, talk to a nursing home accident lawyer today. To get a free consultation, call John Foy & Associates at (404) 400-4000.
What to Do After a Nursing Home Accident
If a loved one suffered injuries in a nursing home, take action as soon as possible. Contact the nursing home’s administrator to report the accident. Also, call a nursing home accident lawyer to make sure you’re taking the right steps.
A lawyer can advise you on the best course of action after the accident. They can also help protect you from insurance company tactics against your claim.
Other actions that can help your case include:
- Taking pictures of the accident scene
- Photographing the physical injuries
- Getting medical attention immediately
- Saving all medical bills, receipts, and other evidence of costs
- Being very careful what you say about the accident
- Not accepting any money or signing anything from the insurance company
The nursing home could be fully responsible for the accident costs. However, you and your family will probably need to fight for what you deserve. The business or their insurance company might look for ways to pay less or avoid liability.
Talk to a lawyer today about your legal options. Most nursing home accident lawyers work on contingency, so there is no charge unless you win compensation. You can discuss the details and create a plan of action for recovering for your damages.
Contact a Nursing Home Accident Lawyer for Help
At John Foy & Associates, we understand the complexity of nursing home accidents. We know what it takes to build a strong case and protect our clients’ rights. Our lawyers bring over 20 years of hands-on experience to the table.
Contact us today to discuss your options for fair compensation. We’ll answer any questions and help you understand your rights. If you choose to work with us, there is no fee unless we win your case.
To get started with a free consultation, call (404) 400-4000 or contact us online.