South Carolina Bed Sore Case Values & Settlements

South Carolina Bedsore Laws, Nursing Home Verdicts & Case Valuation
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Introduction to Bed Sore Litigation in South Carolina

While the South boasts of its graciousness and generosity, the truth is that many of its elderly citizens receive no such warmth or hospital. In fact, it is actually the opposite. Many of this group suffers great injuries including bed sores, falls, abuse, and improper care. Commonly, they suffer these injuries in nursing homes but they can happen anywhere. Following this kind of injury, the next step has to be obtaining zealous counsel to fight for your rights. If you have been the victim of elder abuse, you deserve justice and compensation. What follows is a review of the South Carolina laws that govern elder abuse and bed sore incidents.

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South Carolina Elder Care Laws South Carolina Elder Care Laws

South Carolina does not take elder abuse lightly. They afford their law enforcement and government agencies with broad powers to detect and deter elder abuse. Here is how they define the issue according to the Omnibus Adult Protection Act (§43-35-5): “Abuse means (any) physical abuse or psychological abuse.” This is a very broad definition that allows for significant government interpretation and intervention. Furthermore, the protections given to the vulnerable and abused elderly population are equally broad as seen in section §43-35-10(9): “Protective services means those services whose objective is to protect a vulnerable adult from harm caused by the vulnerable adult or another. These services include, but are not limited to, evaluating the need for protective services, securing and coordinating existing services, arranging for living quarters, obtaining financial benefits to which a vulnerable adult is entitled, and securing medical services, supplies, and legal services.”

This puts the burden squarely on the shoulders of the state of South Carolina. Considering extensive the protections already provided for at the federal level, this is an exceedingly large commitment to make. However, they do not make it on their own, because they require certain persons to report elderly abuse and assist them in the reporting process. According to §43-35-25 , those people include the following: “(A) A physician, nurse, dentist, optometrist, medical examiner, coroner, other medical, mental health or allied health professional, Christian Science practitioner, religious healer, school teacher, counselor, psychologist, mental health or intellectual disability specialist, social or public assistance worker, caregiver, staff or volunteer of an adult day care center or of a facility, or law enforcement officer having reason to believe that a vulnerable adult has been or is likely to be abused, neglected, or exploited shall report the incident in accordance with this section. Any other person who has actual knowledge that a vulnerable adult has been abused, neglected, or exploited shall report the incident in accordance with this section.”

More than most states, South Carolina puts responsibility on ordinary people to stop elder abuse and this is most clearly seen in the last line of the above quotation. It says anyone with “actual knowledge” must act. Ordinarily, state legislatures simply require professionals to step up, not layman who may have witnessed the incident. This represents a very broad scope of liability.

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Compensation Available to You Related to Bed Sores Acquired at a South Carolina Medical Facility

Residents of the south receive no reprieve compared to those in the north. In fact, they often face elder abuse and bed sores at a rate and kind much worse than others around the country. To these clients, we always try and stress that they need to focus on the next step. This next step is inevitably legal action because that is where they can recover compensation that will help them move on from these tragedies. Here are the kinds of compensation that you could receive recovery for if you bring a South Carolina bed sore lawsuit against the defendants that cause these injuries:

  • Health care costs
  • Quality of life reductions
  • Wage and income losses
  • Death costs

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South Carolina Elder Abuse and Bed Sore Statistics

Here are some important statistics related to elder abuse and bed sores for South Carolina 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 South Carolina elder abuse cases is $100,000.
  • 18% of South Carolina elder abuse cases obtain more than $1,000,000.
  • Median recovery for South Carolina bed sore cases is $40,000.
  • 7% of South Carolina bed sore cases obtain more than $1,000,000.

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Deadline to Bring a South Carolina Elder Abuse Lawsuit

South Carolina is viewed as a conservative state and this is not exactly reflected in its laws especially its statutes of limitations. Its citizens generally have a longer longer time window to bring a case to trial than citizens in other states and that helps victims of elder abuse or neglect. To understand the time by which you must file your lawsuit, look to the type of harm and the underlying cause of action that you are bringing:

  • Action for personal injuries: 3 years. SCCA § 15-3-510.
  • Action for medical malpractice: 3 years. SCC § 15-3-545.

These laws have various exceptions. Therefore, it is important that you speak with an attorney to understand exactly how much time you have to bring your case to court.

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Further Information Related to South Carolina Bed Sores
  • Laws: If you would like to read more about the laws of elder abuse in South Carolina, click here.
  • Wound Care: Locate a wound care professional serving South Carolina here.
  • Help line: To report elder abuse, use the following information:
    • 803-898-7318
    • 803-898-2850

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Nursing Home Law Center LLC: South Carolina Bed Sore Attorneys Working to Protect Your Family

Victims of elder abuse and bed sores are all across South Carolina. You might know of one or even be on yourself. While the circumstances of the incident might change, one thing is constant: they all need a competent and experienced South Carolina bed sore attorney to fight for their side. Nursing Home Law Center LLC has worked with a lot of these kinds of cases and can make sure that you get the kind and amount of compensation that you deserve. For every client that we represent, here is what we guarantee:

  • 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.

So get in touch with us today. We can begin the process of recovery as soon as tomorrow. Unlike other law firms which may occasionally prosecute bed sore cases, the attorneys at Nursing Home Law Center LLC regularly represents families in nursing home negligence and medical malpractice cases involving bed sores. We have a nurse and physician on staff who can assess each case to determine who should shoulder the responsibility for the case. If your loved one developed a bed sore while at a South Carolina facility contact our office for a free case review. We have helped families from across South Carolina get the justice they deserve. Some of the cities we’ve served include: Charleston, Columbia, Rock Hill, North Charleston and Mount Pleasant. Talk to our team before you consider taking any further action.

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South Carolina Bed Sore Case Values
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South Carolina Bed Sore Case Statistics:

Approximate recovery of South Carolina plaintiffs in bed sore cases:

Amount of Recovery
% of Plaintiffs

$0
17%

$1-$50,000
50%

$50,000-$100,000
10%

$100,000-$200,000
5%

$200,000-$500,000
10%

$500,000-$1,000,000
3%

$1,000,000-$2,000,000
5%

$2,000,000-$5,000,000
3%
$5,000,000
0%

Approximate recovery of South Carolina plaintiffs in nursing home cases generally (where many bed sore cases take place):

Amount of Recovery
% of Plaintiffs

$0
16%

$1-$50,000
51%

$50,000-$100,000
5%

$100,000-$200,000
6%

$200,000-$500,000
11%

$500,000-$1,000,000
4%

$1,000,000-$2,000,000
3%

$2,000,000-$5,000,000
3%

$5,000,000
3%

Key Takeaways
  • Mean recovery for bed sore cases was approximately $41,000.
  • Compared to the national average, they recovered about $2,000 less.
  • About 24% of bed sore cases involved deaths.
  • About 7% of bed sore cases recovered more than $1,000,000.
  • About 9% more bed sore cases recovered more than $1,000,000 across the country.
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South Carolina Bed Sore Cases:

CASE: BAILEY VS. CARRIAGE HILLS
STATE: SOUTH CAROLINA
INJURY: BED SORES; DEATH
YEAR: 2001
AWARD: $280,000

This case began shortly after a woman passed away while residing at a nursing home. Her family members brought a lawsuit against that facility and charged it with negligence and her wrongful death. They alleged that the nursing home failed to provide the decedent with proper care. Specifically, they contended that the defendant facility did not turn the woman over and that led to her receiving bed sores. Additionally, they argued that she suffered from dehydration and malnutrition because of its insufficient care. The defendant did not accept any of these claims and or any responsibility for the woman’s death. After a trial on the merits, the victim’s estate received $280,000.


CASE: FLOYD VS. EMMEL
STATE: SOUTH CAROLINA
INJURY: BED SORES
YEAR: 2003
AWARD: $500,000

After spending not more than two weeks in a nursing home, the victim in this incident had already contracted pressure sores that led to sepsis. She was only 46 years old and immobile when she was entered into the facility. To recover for her injuries, she sued the nursing home where she was staying at the chief nurse who was taking care of her at time. To both of them, she argued that they failed to meet the proper standard of medical and nursing care and that because of that she suffered injury and damage. She contended that they should have had a better plan in place to prevent bed sores as well as provided better supervision and training. To these allegations, the defendants cried foul and countered that there was nothing they could have done to avoid this outcome and that they acted appropriately. However, both of them preferred settlement to trial and so they offered her $500,000. She accepted the agreement.


CASE: CHASTAIN VS. ANDERSON
STATE: SOUTH CAROLINA
INJURY: BED SORES
YEAR: 2008
AWARD: $2,200,000

A victim in her early seventies brought this suit after she developed bed sores while under the care of a medical facility following a procedure. She argued that she had no sores prior to her time there and that because of the defendant hospital’s deficient care and supervision she sustained them. Additionally, she maintained in her complaint that they could have prevented the spread and complication of the sores had they provided more staff, supervision, and training. The defendant hospital disagreed and fought vigorously at trial for its innocence. The jury originally awarded the woman $2,200,000 but the judge lowered it to $300,000 (through a ruling known as a remittitur). Ironically, this was the same amount of money that the defendant offered the plaintiff prior to trial.


CASE: SIMMONS VS. LIFE CARE CENTER OF AMERICA
STATE: SOUTH CAROLINA
INJURY: BED SORES
YEAR: 2005
AWARD: $310,000

Here, a man was released from a hospital into the care of a nursing home. While at the facility, he developed bed sores that eventually had to be removed through an amputation. Subsequently, he filed a lawsuit against the nursing facility. He alleged that the defendant home did not properly care for him and that as a result he suffered bed sores and a below-the-knee amputation. He sought damages for medical bills, pain and suffering, and lost quality of life. The defendant nursing home denied that it was at fault and the amount of damages that the plaintiff sought. Eventually, the jury decided that the plaintiff was entitled to compensation from the nursing home and fixed the proper amount at $310,000.


CASE: MACK VS. MANOR CARE INC.
STATE: SOUTH CAROLINA
INJURY: BED SORES
YEAR: 2004
AWARD: $200,000

The victim in this case was a woman who was living at a nursing home during the time in question. While living there, bed sores began to grow on her feet and even developed into gangrene. She sued the facility because, as she maintained in her complaint, they did not adequately monitor her for bed sore growth and infection. Due to this failure, she claimed it was responsible for her injuries. In response to this, the defendant nursing home replied that she admitted to its facility for treatment related to bed sores and that they did the best they could. They even transferred to a hospital for further review and care. However, in the jury’s opinion, this was not enough. They awarded the victim $200,000 and found that the defendant nursing home was negligent in its care of the plaintiff.


CASE: STEVENS VS. SANDPIPER CONVALESCENT CENTER
STATE: SOUTH CAROLINA
INJURY: BED SORES
YEAR: 2003
AWARD: $200,000

This case centered on a man’s bed sores, dehydration, and malnutrition while he was a resident of a nursing home. Through his counsel, he brought a case against the home he was living at for negligence. It stated a claim for negligence and offered several reasons why the defendant facility should pay him compensation including the fact that they failed to hire and train adequate personal, that they failed to provide sufficient supervision, and generally ignored the growth and spread of his bed sores. The defendant denied liability but this did not stop the jury from a reaching a separate conclusion. It found for the man and gave him $200,000.


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Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect Resources
Client Reviews
★★★★★
Jonathan did a great job helping my family navigate through a lengthy lawsuit involving my grandmother's death in a nursing home. Through every step of the case, Jonathan kept my family informed of the progression of the case. Although our case eventually settled at a mediation, I really was impressed at how well prepared Jonathan was to take the case to trial. Lisa
★★★★★
After I read Jonathan’s Nursing Home Blog, I decided to hire him to look into my wife’s treatment at a local nursing home. Jonathan did a great job explaining the process and the laws that apply to nursing homes. I immediately felt at ease and was glad to have him on my side. Though the lawsuit process was at times frustrating, Jonathan reassured me, particularly at my deposition. I really felt like Jonathan cared about my wife’s best interests, and I think that came across to the lawyers for the nursing home. Eric