Las Vegas Elder Abuse Lawyer
Nevada nursing homes must provide safe, comfortable, and sanitary living conditions for all patients. Under Nevada law, these facilities must attain the highest level of patient well-being for every resident, including following a comprehensive plan of care and ensuring the patient’s right to be free of abuse, neglect, or improper care.
Despite this, vulnerable seniors living in long-term care facilities may face elder abuse, neglect, and exploitation instead of receiving the respect and compassion they deserve. If your loved one is facing elder abuse in Las Vegas, you should seek the advice of an elder abuse lawyer.
What are Nevada’s Laws Regarding Elder Abuse?
Elder abuse refers to any act committed by a caregiver that causes injury or threatens harm to an older person. Nevada law considers anyone 60 or older as an older person.
Nevada law defines five types of elder abuse in nursing homes:
Nevada defines abuse in several ways:
- Willful and unjustified infliction of injury, pain, and mental anguish
- Deprivation of shelter, clothing, food, or services essential to an older person’s health and well-being
- Any act of inflicting psychological trauma, including
- threatening or controlling them
- damaging their property, including harming pets
- Non-consensual contact, including:
- Acts that an elderly person may not understand or to which they are unable to consent, such as intentional touching of genital organs
- Allowing these acts to be committed against the elderly
Abandonment of older adults occurs when caregivers abandon, neglect, or do not provide the elderly with essential support.
Caretakers or facility managers who fail to provide food, shelter, clothing, or other services, such as medical care and personal hygiene, to older people are considered neglectful.
The act of violating a relationship based on trust, such as in guardianship or power of attorney, is considered exploitation. It may involve deception, intimidation, or undue influence. Exploitation also includes attempts to gain control of the money, assets, or property of an elderly person.
Isolating older people means reducing human contact through:
- The phone calls, visitors, or mail residents receive
- Physically restraining an older person from meeting a person
What Rights Does My Loved One Have as a Nursing Home Resident
Nevada prohibits exploiting, ignoring, excluding, abandoning, or abusing anyone over 60. All residents of long-term care homes are entitled to certain civil rights under Nevada’s Long Term Care Resident Rights.
The following are a few rights they are entitled to in a nursing home setting:
- Exercise their rights without interference, coercion, discrimination, or reprisal from the facility
- Receive information about rules and regulations concerning patient conduct and responsibilities
- Access to their medical records and participation in care discussions
- Maintain their financial records and receive a complete accounting of funds
If you spot any signs indicating elder abuse, notify the facility and the state as soon as possible. Remove your loved one from the facility right away if you fear for their health or safety, and immediately contact a knowledgeable elder abuse lawyer.
An elder abuse lawyer can provide you with information about your loved one’s rights and how they work to establish your case.
What is Reckless Behavior in Nevada Nursing Home Cases?
Reckless behavior occurs when someone acts in such an obvious disregard for others that it shows he or she doesn’t care if they get hurt. Under Nevada law, a professional caretaker is guilty of criminal neglect of a patient under the following circumstances:
- The act is reckless
- The act differs greatly from what a sensible person would do under the same circumstances and violates respect for human life
- It is reasonable to expect that they could have anticipated the consequences of the negligent act
- An aggravated, reckless, or grossly negligent act caused danger to human life
The types of negligent conduct or recklessness that can harm a nursing home resident include:
- Using inappropriate physical restraint
- Providing improper medical care
- Negligently controlling infections such as bedsores
- Sex abuse against an older person
- Insufficient staff in a nursing home
However, the nursing home or staff member may argue that their behavior was not reckless because their conduct was not intentional or was merely negligent. The 2002 case of Vallery v. State found that charges of neglect depend on the patient being both subjected to harm and actually harmed. If the actions do not harm residents, the case may be more challenging to prove.
Elder abuse lawyers can help you file a lawsuit against a nursing home if your loved one suffered harm due to the reckless conduct of a nurse, facility employee, or administrator.
How Do I File a Claim Against a Nursing Home in Las Vegas?
You can file a complaint with the Nevada Division of Public and Behavioral Health (DPBH). A formal complaint against the nursing home or facility staff is one way to approach the case, but filing a personal injury claim against the liable parties can help you collect damages and achieve justice.
You can discuss your case with your nursing home lawyer to find out what damages you could be entitled to, including:
- Medical expenses if the elder abuse injuries resulted in medical treatment, hospitalization, and out-of-pocket expenses
- Pain and suffering because of the mental anguish and physical pain that your loved one is experiencing from the abuse
- Punitive damages may be awarded if there was gross negligence, intentionally harming conduct, or if patient welfare was disregarded in your case.
A judge may award punitive damages as a strategy to deter nursing homes from repeating the same behavior in the future. Your lawyer will start by reviewing your case and investigating the allegations and the history of the nursing facility and staff members.
We Can Help You With Your Elder Abuse Case
Berberian Ain LLP has achieved the following outcomes for clients in elder abuse and nursing home abuse cases:
- $240,000 settlement when a nursing home failed to transfer a patient on time to the hospital, leading to the death of the patient
- $420,000 settlement was reached with a nursing home for wrongful death due to aspiration pneumonia and pressure wounds
- $550,000 settlement against an adult day healthcare center for the improper supervision of elderly participants, resulting in fractured hips and death
Our team of lawyers is passionate about protecting the rights of nursing home residents, and we will do everything possible to protect you and your family.
We Can Help You if a Loved One Has Suffered From Elder Abuse
If someone you love was injured as a result of elder abuse, you have the legal right to seek justice and compensation on their behalf. You can work with the nursing home lawyers at Berberian Ain LLP to find out if you have a case and get an estimate on how much money you can expect to receive in compensation for elder abuse.
Berberian Ain LLP is located at 400 S 4th St, Suite 500, #386, Las Vegas, NV 89101. You can also reach our law firm at 702-602-6685 or request a free consultation online to learn more about your legal options.