If you’ve recently discovered that an elderly loved one has been abused or neglected in a nursing home, it’s only natural to want justice. It can be difficult to remain calm and think rationally after finding out that a family member has been mistreated—especially if a caregiver acted with particularly egregious behavior.
However, there are certain steps that you must take—and mistakes you must avoid—if you intend to bring a personal injury or wrongful death claim. Read on to learn what to do upon learning about nursing home abuse or neglect:
Report the Abuse
If your family member or another resident is in immediate danger, call the police. Whether or not you get the authorities involved, you should report the abuse or neglect by calling the Florida Abuse Hotline at 1-800-962-2873. This line is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Contact a Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer
After getting your loved one to safety, call a nursing home abuse attorney right away to discuss your options for pursuing compensation. A lawyer can review your case in a free consultation, provide answers to your questions, determine if you may have grounds for a claim, and explain how best to proceed.
After you’ve called an attorney, gather together any evidence you have pertaining to your case. This might include medical records, documents and correspondence from the nursing home, correspondence from the insurance company, and photos of injuries and your loved one’s living conditions. You should also write out every detail you remember about the incident and bring that description to your legal consultation.
Avoid Mistakes That Might Harm Your Case
Even if you have strong evidence of the abuse or neglect, there are many defenses the opposing party might use to dispute your claim. While a skilled nursing home abuse lawyer can anticipate such disputes and prepare to counter them, there are steps you can take to prevent unnecessary complications throughout the proceedings.
For instance, you should avoid posting about your case on social media because the opposing party might review your online accounts to find posts that can be used to challenge your claim. Even if you think a post could only strengthen your case, it’s best to stay off social networking websites entirely until your claim has been resolved.
It’s also a good idea to avoid writing any negative reviews about the nursing home. While you might relish the thought of hurting their business or shaming their caregivers publicly, doing so might harm your case.
Finally, it is absolutely essential that you avoid speaking to anyone affiliated with the nursing home or the insurance company of the at-fault provider. Your statements might be taken out of context or misrepresented to challenge liability, causation, or damages. Rather, direct any phone calls or emails to your lawyer.
Speak with a Nursing Home Abuse Attorney in Florida Today
Our lawyers are ready to perform an immediate investigation and gather time-sensitive evidence before it can be altered or destroyed. To set up a free consultation, call us today at (727) 821-1500 or send us a message HERE.