Phoenix Elder Abuse Attorneys
When your family puts their trust in a nursing home, it can feel devastating when that trust gets broken. Many nursing homes cut corners and hire employees who abuse residents. If your loved one experienced elder abuse in a care facility, you could seek financial justice by filing a civil claim against the liable party.
A Phoenix elder abuse lawyer from Gallagher & Kennedy can help your family seek compensation. We can take the necessary steps to file a claim and prove the facility caused your loved one harm. Contact us for a free consultation with an elder abuse lawyer.
What Is Elder Abuse?
Elder abuse is the intentional harming of someone over the age of 65. It can refer to many different types of abuse, including physical, emotional, financial and sexual abuse. Someone may abuse an elderly person for power, control, enjoyment or personal gain. Someone could also be guilty of elder neglect if he or she fails to adequately provide for the needs of the senior. Elder abuse and neglect affect more seniors than most people realize, as this crime remains widely underreported.
Elder abuse can cause significant and even fatal harm to a victim. Suffering any type of elder abuse could result in financial losses, frequent or serious injuries, mental health declines, behavioral changes, depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, infections, malnourishment, or wrongful death. You may be able to catch elder abuse before your loved one suffers irreparable damages by looking out for its signs.
Common signs of elder abuse and neglect include many trips to the hospital, unexplained injuries, genital injuries, sexually-transmitted diseases, burns, lacerations, poor facility sanitation, a dangerous premises, unkempt residents, or mean or abusive staff members. Visit your loved one often to improve the odds of detecting elder abuse at its earliest stages. If you do not recognize abuse until it is too late, consult an experienced Phoenix elder abuse attorney about what to do next.
How Gallagher & Kennedy Can Help Your Loved One in an Elder Abuse Case?
Our lawyers offer compassionate and supportive legal care. We understand the difficulties families go through after learning their loved ones suffered abuse in nursing homes. You have a lot of decisions to make, such as finding a new place for your family member to live. Fortunately, we can take care of the legal side of things.
We have recovered millions for past clients who have suffered injuries at someone else’s hands. Our team goes into every case intending to maximize results.
When you choose our law firm to take on your case, you can expect us to:
- Investigate the incident by reviewing evidence and examining surveillance footage
- Interview witnesses to get a clear picture of what happened
- Organize medical records or financial records to prove the harm your loved one experienced
- Negotiate a fair settlement with the opposing party
- Manage all case-related communications
- Protect you from bad faith insurance practices
- Represent your loved one in court if we do not reach a settlement
We do everything possible to resolve your injury case. Under no circumstances do you have to manage this process alone.
We Offer Legal Service on Contingency
Our attorneys have over 210 years of combined experience helping injury victims recover compensation. As a result, we know insurance companies’ tactics to get victims to accept lower settlements than they deserve. We also know that many elder abuse claimants forgo legal help because they’re worried about cost.
That’s not a problem when you entrust your case to our firm. If you suspect your loved one experienced abuse, we can investigate and build a solid case on a contingency-fee-basis. In this arrangement, you pay nothing for our help. We finance your case’s obligations from start to finish. Then, if we secure a settlement, our payment comes from that sum. This alleviates your financial worries during a challenging time.
We Offer No-Obligation Case Reviews
As noted, you can start your free case review at your earliest convenience. When you connect with our team, we’ll ask some questions about your situation, including where your loved one resides. Then, we encourage you to ask us anything about our firm, including our previous successes. We hope that the answers we offer give you the courage to move forward with your case.
We’ve Secured Millions in Our Years Serving Injured People
Our lawyers first started serving injured claimants in 1978. Since then, we’ve recovered six- and seven-figure settlements for those in and around Phoenix. In one case we managed, we secured a $1.9 million settlement for a nursing home abuse claimant. We’ve also resolved cases for medical malpractice claimants, along with grieving families.
Gallagher & Kennedy hopes to do everything possible to resolve your nursing home abuse case. During your free case review, we want to learn about your loved one’s life, their abuse, and legal goals.
Damages Our Elder Abuse Lawyers Will Fight to Recover
When your loved one suffers elder abuse, they could recover compensation for their losses. Recoverable damages refer to your economic and non-economic losses.
Our team can negotiate with the other party to reach a fair agreement out of court. Although, if we cannot reach a deal, our team can stand up to the opposing party throughout litigation.
Examples of possible recoverable damages include:
- Past and future medical expenses: You could include the cost of any abuse-related medical care in your case’s value. Medical care can include the cost of rehabilitative treatments and medications.
- Moving expenses: When your loved one suffers abuse at a facility, you likely want to move them elsewhere. Moving can cost you or your family a lot of money. You could include those costs in your damages.
- Out-of-pocket costs. You may have spent some of your own money on expenses related to your loved one’s abuse. For instance, if you live out of state, you may have had to purchase airfare to visit your loved one in person. Those expenses are compensable through your claim or lawsuit.
- Pain and suffering: Pain and suffering refers to the discomfort or inconvenience your loved one experienced due to their maltreatment. Arizona is one of many states that does not limit how much you can seek for this expense.
- Emotional distress: If your loved one dealt with emotional issues because of the abuse they endured, you could include emotional distress damages to your claim. These damages account for mental health issues like anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, sleep issues, or fear.
- Wrongful death-related expenses. Your loved one may have passed away as a result of their abuse. We know that compensation can’t account for their passing. Yet, it could offer coverage for their funeral and memorial service.
Our team can review what your loved one went through to ensure we identify all compensable damages. We always want to help our clients seek the maximum compensation possible.
What Should I Do After Learning That My Loved One Suffered Elder Abuse?
You know your loved one better than anyone. So, you should make decisions that make sense for your situation. For instance, you may wish to relocate them to another care facility. The nursing home may also permit you to install cameras in their room, which can allow you to monitor any suspicious activity.
Other considerations may include:
Taking Photos of Any Physical Injuries
Your loved one may have bruises, scratches, or other external injuries as a result of their maltreatment. We encourage you to take pictures of these ailments as soon as they appear. This can serve as important evidence in your case later on.
Notifying the Care Facility of Your Suspicions
Even if the nursing home is clearly negligent, you should still file an official report regarding your loved one’s abuse. Be sure to keep all communications in writing and keep any responses you get. You may also choose to report the abuse to Arizona Adult Protective Services (APS). The more information you have to supplement your case, the better.
Documenting Your Loved One’s Story
If your loved one struggles with a cognitive impairment, like Alzheimer’s or dementia, they could have problems articulating their abuse. Still, you should write down anything they mention, even if you’re not sure whether it’s relevant. Their testimony carries significant weight in your fight for damages.
Our Lawyers in Phoenix Advocate for Injured Claimants in These Situations
Your loved one could have experienced several kinds of elder abuse. All types of elder abuse don’t leave physical marks, sometimes making it difficult to identify. We advocate for claimants who have suffered:
Physical abuse can range from slapping and pushing to severe physical abuse. This could include beating someone repeatedly or restraining them inappropriately. Physical abuse can leave long-lasting injuries that could threaten the life of your loved one.
In any case where you believe your loved one has experienced physical abuse in a nursing home, you should prioritize their safety above all else. If you believe that your loved one is in immediate danger, call 911. You may also remove them from the facility, if you believe this could promote their well-being.
Sexual abuse includes any non-consensual sexual activity with someone else. This may include caretakers, doctors, and even other residents.
Examples of sexual abuse in a nursing home include:
- Unwanted touching
- Forced or coerced nudity
- Forced viewing of pornography
- Threats, non-verbal or otherwise
Financial abuse includes any activity where your loved one’s money or personal belongings get taken.
A nursing home worker may commit financial abuse if they:
- Ask a resident for loans
- Forge a resident’s checks or use their credit cards
- Make themselves a personal beneficiary of the patient’s estate
- Spend a resident’s retirement funds
- Change the resident’s will
- Steal possessions (like jewelry) from a resident’s room
When a nursing home staff member, visitor, or another resident engages in these activities, you could file a claim against them on your loved one’s behalf.
Detecting emotional abuse can get complicated because it doesn’t leave physical marks. However, if you suspect someone has emotionally abused your loved one in a nursing home, you could file a civil claim against the responsible entity.
Seniors could face verbal or nonverbal emotional abuse in the nursing home.
Examples of emotional abuse could include:
- Isolation from other residents
- Racially motivated incidents
If you suspect or witness someone emotionally abuse your loved one, document everything you see or hear in full detail. When our attorneys investigate the incident, we can speak to witnesses to get their side of the story. That way, we can corroborate your version of events.
Neglect occurs when a nursing home doesn’t properly care for its residents. Unfortunately, neglect happens in nursing homes across the United States. Thankfully, you and your family can take steps on behalf of your loved one to help them receive compensation for the neglect they endured.
Examples of neglect in nursing homes include:
- Failing to rotate a bedridden patient to avoid bed sores
- Failing to change a resident out of soiled clothing
- Refusing to administer scheduled meals
- Neglecting to give residents their medications
- Failing to contact families when emergencies happen
- Failing to wash a patient
Regardless of how the nursing home neglected your loved one, you could file a claim on their behalf. When your family puts their trust in a nursing home facility, you shouldn’t have to worry about abuse or neglect. At Gallagher & Kennedy, our elder abuse lawyers serving Phoenix hold nursing homes accountable when they don’t treat their residents appropriately.
Signs of Elder Abuse to Look Out For
Elder abuse is a complex problem. Sometimes, the symptoms of elder abuse mimic other diseases or conditions. Although, if certain signs don’t have a medical explanation, it’s important to consider that elder abuse has occurred.
Knowing the signs of elder abuse allows you to make informed decisions about your loved one’s future.
Something may be amiss about your loved one’s care if:
- You notice bruises, scars, cuts, or other wounds that your loved one can’t explain.
- You notice a lack of basic hygiene, adequate food and water, or clean clothing.
- You notice your loved one has lost weight without attempting to.
- Your loved one has developed bed sores that the facility hasn’t treated.
- Your loved one acts uncharacteristically and no longer has an interest in social contacts.
- Your loved one has developed a sexually transmitted disease.
- You notice unusual activity on your loved one’s financial accounts, such as large withdrawals or unusual changes to their last wishes.
If you notice any of these signs, you should take immediate action to secure your loved one’s well-being. We also suggest reaching out to our elder abuse attorneys serving Phoenix. The sooner we start investigating the case, the more evidence we can collect.
Speak to Our Elder Abuse Team Serving Phoenix During a Free Case Review
The personal injury law firm can help your family seek justice after a loved one experiences elder abuse in a Phoenix nursing home. Your family deserves to have trusted legal care on your side after dealing with such a traumatic event.
Contact our firm today by calling (602) 530-8400. We can answer your questions, explain your next steps, and offer much-needed peace of mind. When it seems like the whole world’s against you, we’re on your side.
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Gallagher & Kennedy — Phoenix Office
2575 E Camelback Rd, Suite 810
Phoenix, AZ 85016
Tel: (602) 878-9704