Overview Of Wrongful Death Incidents In Nursing Homes in Las Vegas, NV
When a patient dies as a result of abuse, neglect, or malpractice in a nursing home in Nevada, this is a wrongful death case: an unfortunate incident that could have been prevented if the nursing home or facility was providing proper care. In many cases, these occur within the confines of the facility but the death can also occur later, as a result of injuries sustained at the facility. Although nothing can be done to replace the loved ones we’ve lost, a Nevada nursing home can be held liable for their terrible lapse of judgement and care. In this article, we’ll discuss what typically leads to a wrongful death in these group care facilities, and a few examples of what happens when a wrongful death lawsuit is pursued.
How Most Wrongful Death Incidents in Nevada Occur
Wrongful death incidents often occur after a period of neglect & abuse of the elder. Most commonly, the elderly person dies due to general neglect of caregivers: they were not monitored properly or given enough care, so that food, drink, and necessary medications were skipped over or not given at proper times and amounts. While these seem like small tasks, these are extremely important for the health and well-being of an elderly patient.
In special cases like the COVID-19 outbreaks in nursing homes, the staff may not have properly informed the authorities and medical professionals about the patient being infected, leading to complications and also other patients in the facility being affected.
Bed sores, also called pressure ulcers, are another severe consequence of negligent treatment that can lead to death. Bedsores can start small but develop over time as the elder is not properly moved or changed: eventually the patient’s bed sores become infected and the bacterial infection can spread throughout the body, causing sepsis.
Finally, the elder may have sustained injuries through a slip and fall incident due to design problems or equipment issues at the facility.
These are just if you have the many reasons that these incidents can occur, and many families do often hire lawyers to represent their interests and potentially pursue a claim or wrongful death lawsuit.
What Is A Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
Wrongful death lawsuits attempt to prove in a court of law that the nursing home, and those responsible including caregivers and management, may be liable for the elderly person’s death. If it is proven that proper care was withheld from the patient, and that the responsible parties were negligent, then they can be held responsible for the costs of any hospitalization, medical treatment, lost wages from family members, and other physical and emotional damages. This compensation comes in the form of a monetary settlement.
The evidence required to build a wrongful death case or claim is tremendous, so it is extremely important that you seek legal assistance if you believe that your loved one has suffered a wrongful death. Nursing homes and other group care facilities are used to seeing these claims filed against them, and they will often work to withhold information and protect their interests (and funds!) if family members attempt to do their own investigations. If you are in this position, do not attempt to communicate with the nursing home or anyone associated by yourself. You have a right to have your legal counsel present for these meetings at all times.
How Are These Lawsuits Pursued?
Should a wrongful death claim be pursued, the first step is discovery. This represents all the work required to uncover evidence related to the person’s death, including interviews with people directly involved with the elder such as family, doctors, nurses, and caregivers. At Gazda & Tadayon, we specialize in cases requiring extensive medical knowledge such as those involving spinal cord injury or traumatic brain injury, and this comes into play in nursing neglect & abuse cases as well.
Also, background research is done on the facility itself to see if it already has a history of violations, as unfortunately many Las Vegas nursing homes do. Other patients may have been abused or victimized in the past, and this will come up in the research process.
If there are past issues, these will make it easier to build the case. The incident can either be settled out of court or litigation is pursued: and if people responsible for the elderly person’s death are found guilty, they will be held financially liable for the damages, and the elder’s spouse or dependents can be compensated at least in small part for the untimely loss of their loved one.
How Long Do Nursing Home Abuse Lawsuits Take in Nevada?
Depending on the specific case, nursing home abuse cases can be complicated cases, requiring extensive research and groundwork to build. Like many other forms of severe personal injury cases, it can take anywhere from several months to several years. The duration of the case can extend if it is discovered that many other elderly patients have been abused or caused a wrongful death at the facility. In situations related to undetected medical conditions, it can require the gathering of medical history before the case can move forward. It depends upon the rarity of that condition and if it would have provided enough early signs. They will take into account how much regular testing was done, as well as how many visits by the doctor had occurred prior to their death. All these must be gathered to properly build the case, which is why these types of cases can sometimes go on for a while.
However, proper preparation is key to increasing the success and maximum compensation on the part of the bereaved family.
Can I File The Wrongful Death Case For My Loved One?
Who can actually file a wrongful death claim? In Nevada, it is almost always a dependent or lawful representative of the deceased person’s estate. Spouses and minor children are the most common beneficiaries of compensation, although it can change from case to case. Nevada law, in regards to wrongful death cases, Nevada has a statute of limitation of two (2) years from the time of the incident, so it is critical that you seek legal assistance immediately to make sure you can still pursue the claim.
And while the number one priority is to secure fair compensation for the loss of the family, there is also much more that can be accomplished by pursuing legal action. You can help protect other residents in the nursing home or in other homes for the aged against this kind of neglect & abuse occurring again. There is a great need for improvement in our state’s nursing homes, and these types of claims help hold them accountable for their actions. In some situations, these can reach a city, state, and even national levels. For this and many reasons it’s important to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit to gain justice for both your loved ones and others like them.
We Can Help You
- Determine if there is neglect or abuse taking place
- Gather concrete evidence of abuse or neglect
- File the necessary paperwork
- Consult with medical experts on the true costs of treatment and long-term care
- See your case through either to trial or to a settlement