After an elderly parent suffers abuse at a nursing home, you and your parent have the right to take legal action. In addition to the charges that the police and Adult Protection Services might pursue, you can file a civil lawsuit against the nursing home. When filing the lawsuit, there are several damages that you can request. To help you decide which damages apply to your case, here is a brief description of some of them.
Emotional and Mental Suffering
One of the most commonly awarded damages in nursing home abuse cases is emotional and mental suffering. The physical abuse or neglect that your parent endured can have a long-term impact on his or her emotional health.
If future treatment is required for the injuries that he or she suffered, your parent could experience fear about his or her future, the procedures that are needed, and the possibility of injury in the future.
Even if you parent did not suffer physical abuse, emotional abuse can still take a toll on him or her. It can lead to a loss of sleep, loss of appetite, and hurt his or her ability to enjoy life in the future. Your parent is entitled to compensation for the emotional damage does to him or her.
Decreased Life Expectancy
An unfortunate consequence of nursing home abuse is sometimes the victim has a shortened life expectancy. In other types of personal injury cases, the life expectancy is considered. However, since nursing home cases often involve elderly people, some juries and insurance companies do not place as high a consideration on life expectancy.
Your parent is entitled to receive damages for the impact the abuse had on his or her life expectancy. Your attorney could argue that due to advancements in medicine, your parent's life expectancy should be considered. The attorney could point to the relationship between his or her physical and emotional injuries and the shortened life expectancy.
For instance, if your parent suffered depression as a result of the abuse, the attorney could show that the condition has been known to impact life expectancy.
Depending on the details of your parent's abuse or nursing home neglect, there are likely other damages that he or she could claim. A personal injury attorney should be involved in the case at early as possible. The attorney can not only file the necessary claim, but take your parent's claim to court if the nursing home is unwilling to settle.