Los Angeles Elder Abuse / Elder Neglect / Elder Law Attorneys

Los Angeles seniors and families have the right to expect that nursing homes will provide for their physical and mental health needs. Seniors should understand that there are federal and California laws that regulate nursing homes and the people that work for these homes. When nursing home facilities and long-term care facilities abuse seniors or fail to protect them, these homes and facilities deserve to be held accountable for the harm their residents  Family members, in-home caregivers, financial advisors, and others who abuse or take advantage of seniors should also be held accountable.

According to the California Department of Justice, by 2025, it’s expected that 6.4 million seniors will live in California. Currently, “about 110,000 Californians live in about 1,300 licensed nursing homes and about 150,000 live in about 7,500 licensed residential care facilities for the elderly. Another 150,000 or more Californians are estimated to live in unlicensed assisted living facilities that may or may not be able to care for them properly.”

Nursing home abuse cases require experienced Los Angeles eldercare lawyers because many of the victims have difficulty acting in their own interests. Numerous seniors have dementia. Many victims have physical limitations. Seniors often rely on family and others to act on their behalf.

What are the various types of nursing home abuse?

The National Council on Aging categories abuse of seniors by the following categories:

  • Physical abuse. This type of abuse causes any type of physical pain or harm.
  • Emotional abuse. This type of abuse includes harassment, intimidation, verbal attacks, and threats of abuse.
  • Sexual abuse. This type of abuse includes any sexual contact with an adult such as “touching, fondling, and intercourse” “when the older adult is unable to understand, unwilling to consent, threatened, or physically forced.”
  • Financial abuse. Sadly, nursing homes and staff members may take advantage of a senior by having him/her sign a power of attorney when none is required enabling the holder of the power of attorney to steal funds from the senior. 
  • Passive neglect. Nursing homes are required to provide basic necessities such as food clothing, medical care, and shelter. If they fail to do so, they can be found liable for passive neglect. 
  • Improper confinement. Seniors should not be restrained or isolated for non-medical reasons.
  • Willful deprivation. Nursing homes and long-term care facilities should not deny their residents the food, medical care, or other items the residents need which risk physical, mental, or emotional harm – unless a competent adult has “expressed a desire to go without such care.”

What are the various types of nursing home abuse?

Residents and their families should be aware of the following signs of abuse: 

  • Infections
  • Pressure ulcers also called bedsores
  • Seizures
  • Broken bones
  • Medication mistakes and overdoses
  • Malnutrition
  • Dehydration
  • Sepsis
  • Depression 
  • Anxiety 
  • An unwillingness to engage in social activities 
  • Withdraw from others 

What are the various types of nursing home abuse?

Some of the reasons our experienced Los Angeles nursing home abuse and negligence lawyers file claims against nursing homes and other senior care facilities include:

  • Hiring practices that are negligent. Nursing homes and long-term care facilities should conduct background checks on their employees. This includes checking for any criminal conduct and checking on any prior nursing home or senior care complaints. The workers should also be checked for their experience and qualifications. 
  • Understaffing and underfunding. One of the major reasons for nursing home neglect is that the homes fail to hire enough workers or fail to hire quality staff. 
  • Failing to comply with Los Angeles and California and federal health and safety standards. There are federal, state, and local laws that regulate safe practices for nursing homes, especially during the COVID-19 crisis. 
  • Failure to properly design the facilities. Nursing homes and senior care facilities should anticipate that seniors will have mobility problems and other difficulties that make it hard to keep their balance and move about the facility. Facilities should be designed to reduce these risks. 
  • Failure to provide competent medical care. Depending on the type of facility, senior care facilities are required to have competent doctors and nurses who specialize in geriatric care. 
  • Failure to monitor the staff. Eldercare facilities should continually monitor the performance of their workers so that the residents get the best care possible. 

What are the various types of nursing home abuse?

Yes. Any nursing home facility or long-term care facility that accepts Medicare (most facilities do) must comply with the following Medicare rights of patients – the right to:

  • Participate in activities
  • Be free from discrimination 
  • Be treated with respect
  • Make complaints 
  • Be free from restraints
  • Obtain proper medical care
  • Socialize with visitors
  • Manage their finances
  • Notify a personal representative
  • Privacy
  • Suitable living arrangements 
  • Other rights

California also has its own Bill of Rights for nursing home and long term care residence check this 

There are many other rights too.

Liability for Los Angeles abuse and neglect

If a senior dies due to abuse or neglect, the family of the deceased resident has the right to file a wrongful death claim on behalf of their loved one.

If the senior is alive, he/she can file a personal injury case. Special attention has to be given in these cases to the fact that seniors often don’t have many years left, so any harm becomes magnified. Damages include compensation for the senior’s medical expenses and pain and suffering. In some cases, a guardian may need to be appointed for the senior.

In abuse or intentional neglect cases, skilled Los Angeles elder care lawyers also seek punitive damages.

Skilled elder care lawyers also work with seniors and families to ensure they can pay for their care in elder care facilities or that they can meet the Medicaid asset guidelines for nursing home care.

Liability for Los Angeles abuse and neglect

Seniors are vulnerable to financial abuse for several reasons:

  • Many seniors have cognitive problems (including dementia) which makes it difficult for them to understand financial matters. They may also have vision problems which makes reading financial documents difficult.
  • Seniors have funds in Social Security accounts, IRAs, pensions, other retirement accounts, and home equity – which makes them targets for financial abuse.

Financial abusers may include:

  • The staff of the nursing home. Seniors place their trust tin the nursing home and staff members to act in the senior’s best interest – not their own interests.
  • In-home caregivers. Any person or company that takes care of the senior at home may take financial advantage of an elder person.
  • Family members. Sadly, the people seniors trust the most (their children and other relatives) may financially abuse seniors.
  • Financial advisors. Seniors often rely on accountants and other financial advisors to manage their accounts and investments. This reliance gives financial advisors many opportunities to take advantage of seniors.

Financial abuse can include direct theft. Financial abuse can also include getting the senior to make purchases they normally wouldn’t make.

We work to hold all responsible parties accountable for financial abuse.

At JS Abrams Law, our Los Angeles elder care abuse and neglect lawyers fight to hold nursing homes and senior care facilities accountable so the victim is compensated and so that other residents aren’t harmed. Call us at 818-330-4515 or fill out our contact form to schedule an appointment.

If you or a loved one is a victim of financial elder abuse, fortunately, there are steps you can take to regain control of a situation that seems to be out of your control.

Schedule Your Consultation Today By Calling: (818) 330-4515

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