legal resources necessary to hold negligent facilities accountable.
Indiana Nursing Home Bed Sore Settlements (Case Valuation)
- Elder Care Laws
- Compensation Available to You
- Elder Abuse and Bed Sore Statistics
- Deadline to Bring an Elder Abuse Case
- Further Information
- Nursing Home Law Center LLC
- Case Values
Too many people know stories of an elderly person that was abused, neglected, or forgotten. Many of these instances take place in nursing homes but many others do not and occur all over society. You might even know someone or be someone that was harmed. Many of their stories are common: bedsores, wanton abuse or neglect, improper medication, failure to diagnose or transfer, and so on. On the other hand, what many people do not know is the legal regime available to any victim of elder care abuse. Therefore, in the next few sections, we will briefly review the laws governing Indiana elder abuse including bed sore verdicts and settlements.
Indiana Elder Care Laws
The protection of the elderly in Indiana is provided for in the Adult Protective Services Act (12-10-3). It provides recourse for anyone over the age of eighteen that cannot (for a variety of reasons) protect themself and is harmed or threatened with harm as a result of:
- Battery or
- Exploitation of the individual’s personal services or property
The onus is put on a set of actors to report instances of elder abuse whenever he or she believes or has reason to believe that another person is in danger of abuse, including the following:
- Medical providers;
- School officials;
- Government agency officials;
Once the government of Indiana identifies elderly abuse, it guarantees certain protections including, “Medical, psychiatric, residential, and social services that are necessary to protect the health or safety of an endangered adult.” 12-10-3-5. Furthermore, in extreme cases, Indiana courts can require care to be given to a person even if that person objects. However, the court can only order this over the objections of the victim in the following circumstances:
- The adult is endangered;
- The adult needs protective services;
- And the adult cannot make an informed decision regarding his or her care.
- § 12-10-3-23
Finally, Indiana provides for an elaborate structure of reporting and investigation for all instances of elderly abuse.
The main focus of Indiana elder abuse or bedsore victims- and soon-to-be plaintiffs- is identifying the kind and extent of compensation that is available to them in court. What can I get in my Indiana elder abuse case? I have bed sores, is there anything I can do about it? We hear these questions all the time. When explaining the nature of recovery that is possible to them, we stick to the following three categories:
Economic damages: medical costs, lost wages, property loss, etc.
Non-economic damages: reduction in the quality of life, normally called pain and suffering or loss of normal life.
Punitive damages: the extent of the defendant’s recklessness and the amount that the court wants to punish him or her.
Naturally, these are general outlines and mere symbols of what is possible in court, a qualified Indiana bed sore attorney can explain what is exactly obtainable in court.
Indiana Elder Abuse and Bed Sore Statistics
Here are some important statistics related to elder abuse and bed sores for Indiana citizens:
- Most common elder abuse scenarios involve physical abuse, mental abuse/emotional abuse, sexual abuse, exploitation, and neglect.
- Approximately ten percent of elderly Americans suffer abuse.
- Almost 85% of elderly abuse is never reported to law enforcement.
- Since 2000, the rate of deaths due to bed sores increased by 50%.
- Median recovery for Indiana elder abuse cases is $40,000.
- 8% of Indiana elder abuse cases obtain more than $1,000,000.
- Median recovery for Indiana bed sore cases is $42,000.
- 20% of Indiana bed sore cases obtain more than $1,000,000.
Indiana has a set time window by which every plaintiff must bring his or her case against the defendant(s) and it is known as a statute of limitations. Statute of limitations are put in place to ensure that cases are ripe when they are brought and not from many years earlier. They apply to elder abuse cases as well but the time by which you must bring the case may differ according to the nature of your suit:
If you bring an action in negligence for personal injuries, then you have two years from when you suffered the injury to bring your lawsuit. The one exception is if you if do not discover your injury for a period of time, then in that case you have an additional two years commencing after that discovery. ICA § 34-11-2-1.
If your elderly abuse action stems for medical malpractice, then you also have two years from when the incident occurred to file a lawsuit. ICA § 34-18-7-1.
Further Information Related to Indiana Elder Care
- Laws: If you would like to read more about the laws of elder abuse in Indiana, click here.
- Agencies: To learn about the agencies that watch and investigate elder abuse in Indiana, click here.
- Wound Care: For information about bed sore treatment specialists in Indiana look here.
To report elder abuse, use the following information:
- Help line: 1-800-992-6978 (Toll free in Indiana)
- Outside of Indiana: 1-800-545-7763, Ext. 20135
More Information Indiana Adult Protective Services.
If you have been the target of Indiana elder abuse or bed sores, you need lawyers that know how to handle your case. Nursing Home Law Center LLC has handled a lot of litigation on this topic and can make sure your compensation is maximized to the fullest extent possible. We promise you the following:
- Access to attorneys at all times—from case investigation through case resolution.
- The necessary resources that will maximize the chances of your recovery.
- Communication with you throughout the duration of your case.
- We will never to work for corporations or physicians.
Nursing Home Law Center LLC assists families with the investigation and prosecution of Indiana bed sore cases and lawsuits. If you believe negligent care at a medical facility was responsible for your loved ones pressure sores, contact our attorneys for a free review of your case. Our firm is proud to serve people from across Indiana, including the following cities: Indianapolis, Fort Wayne, South Bend, Evansville, Hammond, Carmel and Gary to name a few. Our firm is truly committed to your success and fee is only charged when we are successful for you.
Indiana Bed Sore Case Values
Approximate recovery of Indiana plaintiffs in bed sore cases:
Approximate recovery of Indiana plaintiffs in nursing home cases generally (where many bed sore cases take place):
- Mean recovery for bed sore cases was approximately $44,000.
- Compared to the national average, they recovered about the same.
- About a third of bed sore cases involved deaths.
- About 20% of bed sore cases recovered more than $1,000,000.
- About 4% less bed sore cases recovered more than $1,000,000 across the country.
CASE: HANSON VS. MUNSTER
INJURY: BED SORES; INFECTION; DEATH
This lawsuit was brought by the wife of a deceased man after he died. The circumstances of his death were the following: he fell off an x-ray and then subsequently suffered bed sores while under the care of a facility. The sores eventually became infected and killed him. His wife sued the home for negligence and sought to recover damages for loss of services. The basis of her suit was that the nursing home improperly trained and supervised the employees who let her husband fall. The defendant facility denied these allegations. However, the jury believed it was more probable than not that it was responsible for the man’s injuries and subsequent death and they awarded the woman $5,304,945.
CASE: HODGE VS. PATIENT’S COMPENSATION FUND
INJURY: BED SORES
The wife of a nursing home resident brought this lawsuit to an Indiana court. He sustained decubitus ulcers and died while under the care of his nursing home. What is interesting about this case is that after settling with the defendant facility, the plaintiff sued again, arguing her damages were more considerable than she realized, and she was able to extract more money from the other side in the second round of negotiations. She received nearly $285,000 total in settlement recovery.
CASE: EGGERDING VS. CHASE
INJURY: BED SORES
This dispute involved an 88-year-old woman who sustained decubitus ulcers, a broken hip, and various contusions during the time she resided at a nursing home. She sued the facility to recover for these injuries. Her suit argued that the defendant nursing home did not sufficiently care for her, monitor its employees, and otherwise ensure her wellbeing. To justify these occurrences, the defendant pointed to the plaintiff’s Alzheimer’s disease, but this did not play well with the jury. It awarded her $1,500,000 in compensation for her damages-$1,000,000 for punitive damages and $500,000 for pain and suffering.
CASE: DAHMER VS. LAKE WORTH
INJURY: BED SORES
In this controversy, the nursing home patient in question was already suffering from multiple conditions including diabetes, dementia, and other problems. He was 72 years old. He was only at the facility in question for a few months until staff transferred him to a hospital to treat an infection. Eventually, the infection killed him and doctors later determined that it was caused by bedsores that arose during his residency at the nursing home. The man’s wife sued the facility for negligence and claimed that it should have utilized and trained its staff better. The jury agreed and awarded her $1,780,000 in damages.
CASE: ATTERHOLT VS. ROBINSON
INJURY: BED SORES; DEATH
This incident began as a mere fall. Irene Gray was an elderly resident of an Indiana nursing home and sustained a severe fall after slipping on some liquid adjacent to her bed. She lay on the ground for a long time before any staff from the nursing home realized she was prone. Due to the incident, she had to sit in traction and await various surgeries to correct her injuries from the fall. During this time, she sustained significant pressure sores and eventually died from the infections they triggered. Her estate sued the facility and obtained $1,250,000.
The discovery of a bed sore or injury of a loved one who has been a patient at a nursing home is painful for all involved. As the family or guardian of an injured person, Indiana law affords you the opportunity to file a lawsuit or claim against the facility for their negligent care. Having an experienced legal team working on your behalf is the only way to ensure that you receive the full compensation that the law entitles you. Our office has experience prosecuting nursing home abuse cases across the country and will do what it takes to make sure your rights are preserved. Contact our network of attorneys for a free review of your situation with an attorney who has experience with similar matters.