When you place a loved one in a nursing home, you are entrusting care to the staff. However, what do you do when you notice neglect or nursing home abuse?
Thankfully, it is possible to hold the facility accountable through a nursing home abuse claim. Before you submit your claim, it is important to understand how the process works.
Once an individual or party suspects a loved one has been a victim of nursing home abuse, they need to speak with a knowledgeable attorney to aid in the claim. The attorney will review the case to determine if it is truly legitimate. This will involve collecting relevant records and getting an expert review of all relevant information. Once the attorney legitimizes the case, the next step is to send a notice of the intent to pursue litigation to the nursing home.
The Florida statute 400.0233 details the enactment and process for pursuit notice. In short, before filing a suit, the accusing party must notify the other party and wait for a 75-day period. During this time, the accused party may review the claim, including statements from the accusing party. Sometimes, the parties agree to pre-suit mediation, in which the nursing home's lawyers may offer a settlement to avoid court. However, if the parties do not reach an agreement, full litigation may begin.
Once the attorney files the official suit, both parties perform official discovery, which may include an under-oath statement from individuals in the accusing party. After the discovery period, the parties enter court-mandated mediation, during which they sit in separate rooms and the mediator acts as the go-between as the parties try to reach a settlement amount. If they cannot come to a reasonable settlement amount within the usual seven-to-eight-hour process, the case goes to trial where a judge and jury decide the outcome.
As you can see, a nursing home abuse case is quite complex, but it is for a purpose. Make sure you fully understand the process so you may properly pursue justice for your loved one.