Wrongful Death Lawyer
One of the most difficult decisions a family makes is to put their loved one in a nursing home. Often times the care required for an severely disabled or elderly person is too extensive or complicated for the family members alone to handle and feel the nursing home is more equipped to handle the 24 hour a day attention required by their loved one.
The sad truth is that there have been deaths in nursing home as a result of neglect or abuse of its residents.
If your loved one has passed away and you believe it was the fault of a group of individuals or a specific person working at the nursing home, you may have reason to file a wrongful death claim. Contact a wrongful death lawyer Minneapolis, MN trusts discuss your situation to determine whether you have a legitimate claim against the nursing home.
There are many conditions in nursing homes that may contribute to wrongful death:
- Infections that just won’t heal
- Living conditions that are unsanitary
- Falls because of not being supervised or unsafe conditions
- Lack of supervision resulting in patients wandering
- Dehydration and malnutrition
- Errors in the distribution of medications – or forgetting to dispense necessary
- Basic needs neglected
How to Prove that a Nursing Home was Negligent in a Wrongful Death Suit
First, it is important to establish your state’s laws concerning who can bring a wrongful death lawsuit. Usually, it is someone who was close to the deceased person or a member of their family. Determining negligence is difficult, and usually requires a great deal of investigation from a knowledgeable law firm.
Nursing homes may try to disguise the cause of death. Many times, ‘heart failure’ is listed, when in reality the actual cause of death may have been a severe infection or malnutrition. It is unfortunate that because most deaths in nursing homes involve elderly residents, there is not as much attention given to the exact cause of death.
The Sad Truth About Wrongful Death and the Elderly
In many cases, local authorities do not have adequate funds to look into every death, therefore they may not be in a financial position to order investigations or autopsies. A family member or close friend can always request that an autopsy be done. In addition, if the local entity claims they cannot afford the autopsy, someone close to the deceased may offer to pay for the autopsy.
Of course, many elderly patients do die of natural causes in nursing homes, however, if foul play of any kind is suspected, an investigation should be conducted to be sure the nursing home has not played an unnecessary part in the death.
Damages may not be significant in a wrongful death suit in part to the deceased age. An experienced wrongful death attorney will discuss the particulars of your case and how to proceed. If you believe your loved one passed away at a nursing home because of something or someone at the facility, contact an attorney to help.
Thank you to our friends and contributors at Johnston | Martineau, PLLP for their insight into wrongful death and nursing home cases.