If your loved one resides in an assisted living facility in New Jersey or New York, and your family has had to confront the horrifying reality of elder abuse and neglect, you can put your trust in a nursing home abuse attorney from Kantrowitz, Goldhamer & Graifman. Utilizing our highly skilled legal team and seasoned investigators, our firm will get to the bottom of your suspicions and hold negligent parties accountable.
Kantrowitz, Goldhamer & Graifman has a proven reputation for getting results in complex cases against private and government-funded nursing home facilities and is committed to protecting the rights of your loved one.
Every year, millions of elderly Americans are abused in the facilities charged with their care. Reports of elder abuse, neglect and exploitation in the Northeast and across the country are on the rise. In fact, one in four nursing homes has faced allegations involving elder abuse and serious injuries to their residents.
Nursing home abuse lawyers serving NY and NJ
KGG senior partner Barry S. Kantrowitz has spent decades devoting his practice to helping victims of elder neglect and mistreatment. Suing a nursing home for negligence is not a simple task. However, successful litigation can provide some measure of justice for victims, and also prevent residents from suffering similar atrocities in the future.
At Kantrowitz, Goldhamer & Graifman, we believe that our elders deserve to be treated with the utmost dignity and respect, and will fight tirelessly to secure reparations for their pain, suffering and financial losses. Bergen County and Rockland County residents in need of a reputable nursing home neglect lawyer are encouraged to reach out for a free legal consultation.
10% of the elderly face abuse and neglect
State and federal laws outline basic standards of care required in assisted living facilities, but recent studies indicate that at least 10 percent of senior Americans experience some form of abuse each year.
Legislatures in New Jersey and New York have passed various elder abuse prevention laws, designed to stop the mistreatment and neglect of our most vulnerable residents. Despite these measures, countless seniors fall victim to intentional emotional torment, physical violence and other horrific acts.
Abused elderly often suffer from depression and anxiety, which can exacerbate medical conditions. Research even suggests that abused seniors are three times more likely to suffer premature death compared to others.
What is considered nursing home neglect?
What is elder abuse? Elder neglect and abuse can take place in long-term assisted living facilities, nursing homes, or within the family home. Nursing home neglect encompasses a wide variety of actions and inactions, in which a caretaker willfully or unintentionally fails to provide appropriate care, or causes injury to the patient.
More broadly speaking, elder neglect is a single or repeated act, or lack of action, occurring within any situation where there is an expectation of trust that results in distress or harm to an older person.
This may include threats or actions that inflict physical injury, emotional trauma or sexual assault. In litigation filed against nursing homes that are under-staffed and incapable of dealing with dementia patients or those suffering from mental decline, allegations often involve inappropriate use of restraints or sedative medication, abandonment, or personal hygiene neglect.
If you suspect the following types of neglect, contact your local ombudsman and an elder abuse attorney at our firm:
- Medical neglect – staff fails to provide medical attention to prevent or treat infections, bedsores, cuts or other health concerns. Staff fails to administer current medications, leading to worsening condition.
- Social neglect – staff intentionally ignore the patient or repeatedly isolates them from others
- Basic needs not met– staff fail to provide a reasonably safe environment with supervision; fail to provide adequate food and water, leading to malnutrition and dehydration
- Neglectful of personal hygiene – patient is not assisted with daily tasks to maintain personal hygiene: bathing, brushing their teeth, washing clothes, etc.
Reporting elder abuse
There are hundreds of nursing homes in New York and New Jersey. Many of these facilities are run by caring, competent staff that provide wonderful care for their long-term residents. Sadly, elder abuse and neglect is a growing problem both locally and in nursing homes across the nation. Just two years ago, a jury returned a $13.2 million judgement against Hudson County’s Harborview Healthcare Center. The nursing home facility faced accusations of misconduct and gross negligence that lead to the wrongful death of an 87-year old woman.
Many nursing home residents have few friends or family left to care for them. They rely entirely upon nursing home caregivers and may be reluctant to, or unable to, report mistreatment. For this reason, it’s important to recognize the symptoms and report abuse through appropriate channels.
If you suspect an older person is being abused or mistreated, you can contact the Adult Protective Services, using their toll-free elder abuse hotline. You can also reach out to your Long-Term Care Ombudsman.
Signs of nursing home abuse
One or more of these signs may be an indication that your loved one is a victim of elder abuse or neglect:
- Bedsores, also known as pressure sores
- Medication errors
- Malnourishment, malnutrition or dehydration
- Slip and fall accidents
- Soiled bedding or soiled clothing
- Poor hygiene
- Broken bones
- Head injuries
- Complaints of poor treatment
- Reluctance to complain out of fear
- Frequent crying and depression
- Agitation, withdrawal or fear
You and your family deserve access to a qualified nursing home abuse attorney in Bergen County, without having to worry about the expense. For this reason, we offer our in-depth experience and legal support on a contingency fee basis, so you owe no fees unless we win money in your case.
Nursing home negligence lawsuit settlements
Given the unspeakable suffering many nursing home residents have experienced at the hands of their caregivers, many lawsuits have resulted in significant compensation awards. Historically speaking, few nursing home negligence lawsuits are tried before juries, and are instead settled out of court.
The following are actual verdicts and settlements:
- $1.5 million settlement – Illinois resident severely burned when negligent staff used scalding bath water
- $14 million award – Massachusetts resident suffers extreme neglect and eventually dies in nursing home, after staff failed to treat her infections, bedsores and appendicitis.
- $4 million settlement – Kentucky nursing home held liable for failing to monitor patient’s medication dosing, resulting in his death.
How long does it take to settle a nursing home lawsuit?
There is no definitive timeline for litigation involving nursing home abuse. Generally speaking, the process may take from 8 to 16 months to resolve, though each claim is different. In some cases, victims and their families may find it more advantageous to negotiate a settlement out of court, which can save both time and money. Once a settlement is reached between both parties, the claim will not proceed to trial.
Our attorneys always have your best interest at heart, and will advise whether it’s better to accept a settlement, given the evidence and injuries sustained, or argue the case before a jury.
Speak to a nursing home negligence attorney
No one should have to live in fear of physical abuse, neglect or exploitation – least of all our elders. KGG nursing home abuse attorneys represent clients throughout Rockland County, NY and Bergen County, NJ. Please call our offices to schedule a confidential case review with an elder abuse lawyer at no charge. We respond promptly to your messages and evening appointment requests can be accommodated.
What does it mean to be neglected in a nursing home?
As a Rockland County, NY nursing home lawyer knows, neglect and abuse or two sides of the same coin. Though abuse, especially physical, may appear to present problems that should be fixed quickly, neglect is often a quiet, malicious means of causing harm to a person, especially an elderly person in a nursing home. Unfortunately, neglect runs rampant in nursing homes throughout the United States and it is a problem that too many victims and loved ones face every day. If you have discovered signs that your loved one is being neglected in their nursing home and you are prepared to move forward with a legal claim, reach out to the trusted team at Kantrowitz, Goldhamer & Graifman, P.C. We care about giving your loved one justice.
What does it mean to be neglected in a nursing home?
Nursing home neglect is not simply “being too busy” on certain days. Many people who are accused of nursing home neglect claim that they had an especially busy day or that other patients were taking up too much of their time. However, a Rockland County nursing home lawyer knows that the injuries and illnesses that come from neglect do not happen overnight.
If your loved one is experiencing neglect at their nursing home, it means that the physicians and caretakers are not meeting your loved one’s basic needs. They may not be getting enough food and water throughout the day, their living situation may be filthy and dirty, they may not be getting bathed enough, or they might not be getting the basic medical care they need to stay alive. If you believe any of these problems are occurring with your loved one, it is time to speak with a lawyer and get your loved one to safety as soon as possible.
Why does neglect occur?
There are many reasons that neglect may occur in nursing homes.
- The staff members are not trained. In many instances, the nursing home may just want warm bodies on the floor to check in on patients and may not have taken the time to properly train the staff or ensure they know how to handle basic medical needs.
- There are not enough staff members. Many facilities have too many patients and not enough staff members. When this is the case, each patient may not get the proper care they need. Though staff members may be doing their best and providing care for other patients, some patients may end up slipping through the cracks.
- Staff members are intentionally neglectful. There are even instances where staff members may choose to be neglectful of certain patients if they are upset or if the patient has been especially difficult. It is important to remember that no matter how difficult a patient is, staff members must give them basic care to ensure they do not become injured or ill.
If you are concerned that your loved one is being neglected or if you have found proof, it is crucial that you get them out of the nursing home and somewhere safe as soon as possible. Call Kantrowitz, Goldhamer & Graifman, P.C. to speak with our Rockland County nursing home lawyer now.
Additional Nursing Home Abuse Resources:
- New York State Department of Health, Complaints About Nursing Home Care https://www.health.ny.gov/facilities/nursing/complaints.htm
- National Center on Elder Abuse, Statistics/Data http://www.ncea.aoa.gov/Library/Data/index.aspx
- National Council on Aging, What is elder abuse? https://www.ncoa.org/public-policy-action/elder-justice/elder-abuse-facts/
- World Health Organization, Elder Abuse http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs357/en/
- NJ.com, Opinion: Recognize, prevent and report elder abuse http://www.nj.com/opinion/index.ssf/2014/07/opinion_recognize_prevent_and_report_elder_abuse.html
- HelpGuide.org, Elder Abuse and Neglect https://www.helpguide.org/articles/abuse/elder-abuse-and-neglect.htm