Nursing Home Lawyer
It can be unquestionably difficult to know whether it is appropriate to connect with an experienced nursing home attorney or not. Most kinds of elder abuse, neglect, and exploitation are very difficult to identify. As a result, you may have concerns about how your loved one is being treated but may be unsure of whether your concerns warrant the effort it takes to seek legal guidance. Unfortunately, given how commonplace elder abuse is in the U.S. (approximately one out of every 10 adults over the age of 59 has experienced some form of elder abuse), if you are asking yourself, “When should I talk with a nursing home lawyer?” the answer to your question is, “Now.”
Elder Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation
As experienced nursing home attorneys, like those at Brown Kiely LLP, can explain to you in detail, there are three primary kinds of elder abuse that occur in nursing homes. The word “abuse” can accurately describe all three of these subgroups, as they amount to unlawful mistreatment of a person that may rise to a level that can only be described as “cruel.” However, as a subgroup of the larger “abuse” concept, abuse refers to the intentional physical, sexual, emotional, and/or mental mistreatment of a nursing home resident. By contrast, “neglect” involves failing to tend to a resident’s basic needs and “exploitation” involves taking advantage of a person’s assets and/or identity.
None of these forms of abuse is ordinarily easy to identify. For example, a classic sign of sexual abuse is strange discharge but this symptom can be present when someone has a run of the mill infection. A classic sign of neglect involves malnutrition and dehydration but as individuals age (especially if they struggle with memory issues) they may be far less inclined to eat and drink as their medical conditions advance. With that said, the prevalence of elder abuse is staggering in the U.S. Don’t take your “gut” for granted. Does your loved one seem sick or does it seem like something is “wrong” that you just can’t put your finger on? Even if your loved one “only” seems withdrawn, they may need you to advocate on their behalf. Even fully independent adults can withdraw into themselves instead of speaking up in the wake of suffering abuse.
Legal Assistance Is Available
When you schedule a consultation with a nursing home lawyer, anything you say during the consultation process will remain confidential. This is not a high-pressure situation but is, instead, a no-risk opportunity for you to receive objective legal guidance. You can ask questions and voice your concerns in this forum without committing to take any kind of action whatsoever. Yet, by investing an hour of your time, you can get a much better sense of whether your concerns about your loved one are well-founded and about whether you have grounds upon which to file legal action. Scheduling a free consultation will cost you nothing, is confidential, and won’t obligate you to do anything BUT it may end up saving your loved one from suffering.