Nursing Home Abuse / Neglect
As loved ones grow older, several families in Florida trust nursing homes to care for their elderly relatives. Unfortunately, many of these facilities are understaffed and several more employ abusive workers. As a result, there are a multitude of cases involving nursing home abuse or neglect every year—and even then, there are countless cases that are never reported.
Senior citizens do not always make their relatives aware of these issues. Either because they are ashamed, embarrassed, or traumatized by these experienced, victims of neglect or abuse stay silent far too often. Concerned family members should recognize the signs of these nursing home problems and know what their legal rights are in protecting loved ones.
Delray Beach Nursing Home Abuse / Neglect Lawyer
If somebody you care about has been the victim of abuse or neglect in a Florida nursing home, you should contact a skilled personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Drew McLaughlin and Jeffrey Morris are dedicated advocates for nursing home neglect and abuse victims all over the greater Delray Beach area.
McLaughlin Morris, P.A. represents clients in Broward County, Miami-Dade County, and Palm Beach County. You can discuss your case with our firm when you call (561) 404-0529 to schedule a free, confidential consultation.
South Florida Nursing Home Abuse / Neglect Overview
- What are signs of physical abuse or neglect?
- How do nursing homes emotionally or verbally neglect or abuse patients?
- What are some ways that the elderly can be victims of financial abuse or neglect?
- Where can I learn more about neglect and abuse in nursing homes?
Physical abuse can involve physical force or violence against the elderly. It may be a single incident or a series of repeated occurrences. Some examples of physical abuse or neglect in nursing homes include, but are not limited to:
- Lack of food or water
- Overmedication or other improper prescription drug use
- Inappropriate physical restraint
- Sexual abuse
Family members should look for behavioral or physical signs of this kind of abuse, which may include such indications as:
- Abrasions on wrists
- Bloody or torn clothing
- Broken bones, sprains, fractures, or dislocations
- Broken eyeglasses
- Bruises or bleeding in genital areas
- Dehydration or malnutrition
- Hair loss
- Unexplained bruises, burns, or cuts
Nursing home staff does not need to use physical force to abuse elderly residents. Caregivers or other employees can cause tremendous emotional damage with their attitudes and by making dehumanizing statements. Some of the types of verbal or emotional neglect or abuse in nursing homes include:
- Belittling the patient
- Calling patient derogatory names
- Criticizing the patient
- Ignoring or isolating the patient
- Insulting the patient
- Threatening the patient
- Yelling at patient
Signs of emotional or verbal abuse or neglect can be harder to identify because they are less obvious than indicators that a patient has been physically abused. However, some common red flags that a loved one may be the victim of this type of neglect or abuse include:
- Excessive crying
- Improper administration of medications
- Pressure ulcers (bed sores)
- Rapid weight loss
- Social withdrawal or isolation
- Soiled bed linens or clothing
- Unsanitary living conditions
Family members need to be especially mindful of their loved one’s personal finances. Some nursing home employees may engage in any number of activities to defraud patients, including:
- Cashing checks without the patient’s consent
- Charging patient for unnecessary services
- Forcing or deceiving patient to sign financial documents against their will
- Forging a patient’s signature
- Making late payments or failing to pay bills
- Making unauthorized withdrawals or bank transfers
- Misappropriating funds, property, or other assets
- Stealing the patient’s identity
- Using the patient’s money or property for their own benefit
- Using a patient’s ATM or credit card without authorization
There can be several signs of possible financial elder abuse that should be cause for concern. A few possible indications that your loved one may be a victim of financial abuse or neglect include:
- Sudden modifications to a patient's will, power of attorney, or other legal documents
- Forged signatures
- Unauthorized use of patient’s ATM card
- Unexplained withdrawals from bank accounts
- Checks frequently written to particular individual
- Missing personal belongings
- Patient no longer wants to talk about routine financial matters
- Additional names on patient’s accounts or bank cards
Adult Protective Services — This Florida Department of Children and Families program protects vulnerable adults from abuse, neglect, or exploitation. The website contains links to Florida policies and statutes, in-home community services, and publications and reports.
111 South Sapodilla Avenue
West Palm Beach, FL 33401
Florida Health Care Association (FHCA) — The FHCA represents more than 1,000 members and more than 500 facilities that provide nursing, rehabilitation, assisted living and other services to the elderly and individuals with disabilities in Florida. The website has information about elder care in Florida, conversations about care, and a calendar of events.
Assisted Living Facilities and Senior Housing - Florida Department of Elder Affairs (DOEA) — The Elder Housing Unit provides information and technical assistance to elderly people about affordable housing and assisted living choices. You can find information about assisted living facilities, adult family care homes, and adult day care centers as well as answers to frequently asked questions about DOEA programs and how to apply for services.
Find the Best Nursing Home Abuse / Neglect Lawyer in Palm Beach County
Drew McLaughlin and Jeffrey Morris understand the overwhelming stress family members feel when their loved one is the victim of nursing home neglect or abuse. We fully investigate these cases, file reports with the proper authorities, and file lawsuits against all negligent parties.
McLaughlin Morris, P.A. help clients in such communities as Fort Lauderdale, Miami, West Palm Beach, and many other locations in South Florida obtain the compensation that they and their loved ones deserve. Call (561) 404-0529 to discuss your case with our firm during a free legal consultation.