Entrusting the care of a loved one to nursing home staff can be a difficult decision for any family member to make. When the decision is made, it is expected that nursing home staff members will strive to provide the best care and protection to a loved one. Unfortunately, a major problem arises when nursing homes are understaffed or are unable to meet professional standards in the nursing home industry. Employees may take out their frustrations in the form of abuse on patients, or they may exploit, sexually abuse, or neglect to provide the proper medications and nutrition to patients.
Over 132,000 elders are the victims of nursing home abuse in California every year. Federal laws like the Nursing Home Reform Act and California state laws are intended to protect vulnerable residents in nursing homes. If you suspect that a loved one has been the victim of abuse in a nursing home, then get in touch with a California nursing home lawyer who can help you today.
California State Laws & Nursing Home Standards
When it is suspected that vulnerable adults are the victims of neglect or abuse, §15700 of the Welfare and Institutions Code in California provides for emergency protective custody of suspected victims. When abuse resulting in physical harm is suspected, the observer should make a telephone report as soon as possible to local law enforcement authorities. The Mello-Granlund Older Californians Act requires ombudsmen to stay aware of the care and treatment of adults 60 or older in nursing homes, and ombudsmen are also charged with the task of investigating reports of abuse.
Common Problems in California Nursing Homes & Statistics
The most common problem impacting residents in nursing homes is neglect. Neglect can occur when a resident has been malnourished, unnecessarily restrained, or forced to consume drugs for no medical purpose. This neglect deviates from the care that nursing homes are supposed to provide under §1250(c) of the California Health and Safety Code. This section maintains that nursing homes are supposed to provide continuous “skilled and supportive care” to residents on an extended basis. Because of their vulnerable state, elders in nursing homes are required to receive 24-hour inpatient care, proper nutrition, medical services, exercise and activity services.
Unfortunately, understaffing caused many nursing homes to be unable to provide this adequate care in 2004. In 2004, it was estimated that one out of three nursing homes failed to provide the required minimum of 3.2 nursing hours to patients every day.
End the Abuse & Talk with a California Nursing Home Law Firm Now
It is vital to speak with a California nursing home lawyer if you believe that your loved one may be harmed due to abuse. Residents should not have to suffer due to the fact that a nursing home may be understaffed or underfunded. These issues trickle down to the care that your loved one ultimately receives, and a California nursing home law firm can get to the root of the issue in your case. Our attorneys are here to help families throughout the State of California in such areas as:
- Anaheim Nursing Home Lawyers
- Bakersfield Nursing Home Lawyers
- Chula Vista Nursing Home Lawyers
- Fontana Nursing Home Lawyers
- Fremont Nursing Home Lawyers
- Fresno Nursing Home Lawyers
- Irvine Nursing Home Lawyers
- Long Beach Nursing Home Lawyers
- Los Angeles Nursing Home Lawyers
- Oakland Nursing Home Lawyers
- Oxnard Nursing Home Lawyers
- Redding Nursing Home Lawyers
- Riverside Nursing Home Lawyers
- Sacramento Nursing Home Lawyers
- San Bernardino Nursing Home Lawyers
- San Diego Nursing Home Lawyers
- San Francisco Nursing Home Lawyers
- San Jose Nursing Home Lawyers
- Santa Ana Nursing Home Lawyers
- Stockton Nursing Home Lawyers
Call our California nursing home abuse lawyers for a free consultation today.
1. Chen, Linda. “Eradicating Elder Abuse in California Nursing Homes.” Santa Clara Law Review 52.1 (2012): 213-254. Print.
Nursing Home Negligence
STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS
- 2 years with Discovery Rule. (Code of Civil Procedure, §335.1)
- Medical malpractice – 3 years from date of injury or 1 year from date of discovery, whichever occurs first, except for foreign objects where SOL runs from when object is or should have been discovered. Minors under six have 3 years or until to age eight, whichever is longer, to bring an action. Actions may be tolled for minors where parent or guardian and defendant’s insurer or health care provider committed fraud or collusion in failure to bring an action on behalf of the injured minor.
- 2 year SOL in elder abuse cases.
- $250,000 cap on non-economic damages. Economic damages (lost earnings, medical care, rehabilitation costs) are not limited by statute. Damage awards for future loss are capped at $50,000. (California Civil Code – §3333.2; California Code of Civil Procedure, §667.7)
- Punitive damages (California Civil Code §3294(a))
STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS
- 2 years; Exception: Death from medical malpractice (3 years). (Code of Civil Procedure, §335.1; Code of Civil Procedure, §340.5)
- $250,000 cap on non-economic damages. Economic damages (lost earnings, medical care, rehabilitation costs) are not limited by statute. Damage awards for future loss are capped at $50,000. (California Civil Code, §3333.2; California Code of Civil Procedure, §667.7)
- Punitive damages – (California Civil Code, §3294(a))
- Elder Abuse and Dependent Adult Abuse Civil Protection Act – (California Welfare & Institutions Code §§ 15630-15632)
- Protective Placement and Custody of Endangered Adults – (California Welfare & Institutions Code § 15700)
- Elder Death Team – (California Penal Code §§ 11174.4-11174.9)
- Mello-Granlund Older Californians Act