Nursing homes play a crucial role in providing care, safety, and comfort to our elderly loved ones. But when they don’t take precautions, residents can suffer life-threatening slip and fall accidents. These may seem like minor accidents, but that isn’t the case if the victim is a senior. Studies show falls are the leading cause of injuries and deaths for those over 65.
If you or a loved one suffered a serious slip and fall accident injury, you probably have questions about who is responsible and whether you can file a claim against the nursing home where it occurred. Below you’ll find more information on victims’ rights and how to proceed.
Duty of Care
Nursing homes have a legal duty to provide a safe and secure environment for their residents. This duty of care extends to preventing a slip and fall accident. Facilities must take reasonable measures to ensure that the premises are free from hazards that could reasonably cause harm to their residents. This includes maintaining walkways, addressing spills promptly, providing adequate lighting and implementing safety measures to prevent falls.
Negligence and Liability
When a senior is seriously injured in a slip and fall accident, the question of negligence comes into play. Negligence refers to the failure to exercise the level of care that a reasonable person or entity would under similar circumstances. If it can be proven that the nursing home’s negligence directly led to the slip and fall accident and subsequent injuries, they may be held liable for the damages.
To establish negligence on the part of the nursing home, certain elements need to be demonstrated:
- Duty of Care: It must be established that the nursing home owed a duty of care to the resident.
- Breach of Duty: It must be shown that the nursing home breached its duty of care by failing to take reasonable precautions to prevent the slip and fall accident.
- Causation: It must be proven that the breach of duty directly caused the slip and fall accident and resulting injuries.
- Damages: Finally, the injured senior and their personal injury lawyer must show that they suffered damages because of the accident, such as medical bills, pain and suffering, and other related costs.
Seeking Legal Recourse
Attorney J.J. Dominguez of The Dominguez Firm explains how a senior and their family should proceed if they’re injured in a slip and fall accident at a nursing home. “If you believe a nursing home’s negligence led to an accident that injured you or a loved one, it’s important to hire an experienced personal injury attorney right away. These cases can be complex. These cases can be complex. For starters, state laws regarding nursing home liability vary. In short, don’t try and handle it yourself.”
Compensation for Damages
If successful, a lawsuit against the nursing home could result in compensation for various damages, including medical expenses, pain and suffering, rehabilitation costs, emotional distress, and other related losses. While monetary compensation cannot undo the harm caused, it can provide financial support to help the injured senior and their family at a difficult time.
Nursing homes have a responsibility to ensure the safety and well-being of their elderly residents. When a senior is seriously injured in a slip and fall accident due to a nursing home’s negligence, they or their family should speak to a personal injury lawyer immediately. They can provide the guidance and representation needed to seek justice and secure compensation for the damages endured.