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Suing the Nursing Home for Improper Use of Equipment

Slechter Law Firm, PLLC
Senior woman sitting on the wheelchair alone at nursing home

When a loved one's home becomes a nursing facility, their safety, and welfare should be paramount. Regrettably, there are times when nursing homes fall short in providing adequate care, including the incorrect use of equipment. If you have reason to believe that your loved one has suffered due to negligence on the part of the nursing home in using equipment, you might have a valid claim for compensation. 

In a nursing home environment, devices such as bed rails, wheelchairs, lifts, and restraints are frequently employed to aid residents with mobility and prevent falls. However, when these tools are misused or negligently administered, they can cause significant harm to those residing in the home. Instances of equipment misuse could include not properly securing bed rails, using restraints for extended periods without medical justification, or operating wheelchairs or lifts without the necessary training or supervision. 

Establishing a Case Against the Nursing Home

Initiating a lawsuit against a nursing home for the incorrect use of equipment requires establishing several critical elements: 

  1. First, your lawsuit needs to demonstrate that a duty of care existed between the nursing home and your loved one. This duty of care implies that the nursing home was legally bound to provide a safe environment and adequate care to your family member. 

  1. Second, you have to prove that the nursing home violated this duty of care by misusing equipment. This can be substantiated by collating evidence such as medical records, witness statements, and expert testimony.  

  1. Next, you need to establish that the improper use of equipment directly resulted in harm or injury to your loved one. This can be achieved by carefully documenting the injuries sustained and associating them with the negligent use of equipment. 

  1. Lastly, you must demonstrate that the nursing home's negligence caused damages such as medical expenses, pain and suffering, or loss of quality of life.  

Your Timeline for Filing a Lawsuit

The statute of limitations for filing a lawsuit against a nursing home for neglect or injuries can vary greatly depending on the state. 

In Kentucky, the general statute of limitations for personal injury claims is one year from the date of the incident. But there can be exceptions or extensions in certain circumstances, especially in cases of nursing home neglect or abuse where the harm might not be immediately apparent. 

Please remember that this information is meant to provide a general understanding of the law. Every case is unique, and various factors can affect the timeline for legal action. Therefore, if you suspect nursing home neglect or abuse, it's imperative to reach out to a legal professional as soon as possible. The Slechter Law Firm, PLLC, serving clients across Kentucky, including Louisville and Lexington, can provide comprehensive guidance tailored to your specific situation. 

What Happens if the Nursing Home Resident Passes Away?

If a nursing home resident passes away due to a staff member's improper use of equipment, it can be a deeply distressing and overwhelming situation for their loved ones. In such cases, the family may have the right to pursue a wrongful death claim against the nursing home. 

A wrongful death lawsuit is a legal action brought when a person's death is caused by the negligent or intentional act of another party. In this context, if it can be proven that the nursing home staff's incorrect use of equipment directly led to the resident's death, the nursing home could be held liable. 

While no amount of compensation can ever replace a loved one, a successful wrongful death lawsuit can provide financial relief during a difficult time. It can also serve to hold the nursing home accountable for its actions and possibly prevent similar incidents from happening in the future. 

But remember, time is of the essence in these cases. Each state has a statute of limitations, a set time limit during which a wrongful death lawsuit must be filed. In Kentucky, this period is generally one year from the date of death. 

How Product Liability Law Factors In

In some cases, the manufacturer of the equipment used in a nursing home may also be held accountable for any injuries or harm caused by its defective products. Under product liability law, if there is a defect in the design, manufacturing, or labeling of a product, and it causes harm to someone using it as intended, the manufacturer can be held liable. This can include equipment used in nursing homes such as lifts, wheelchairs, and restraints. 

If the nursing home staff followed proper procedures in using the equipment, but it still caused harm due to a product defect, both the nursing home and the manufacturer may be liable for damages. In such cases, it's key to have an experienced legal team by your side to navigate the complexities of product liability law. 

How an Attorney Can Help

A legal professional with experience in nursing home abuse and neglect cases can assist you in navigating the complexities of suing a nursing home for improper equipment use. They will investigate the incident, gather evidence, and build a strong case on your behalf. In addition, an attorney can negotiate with the nursing home's insurance company to secure a fair settlement or represent you in court if necessary. 

Contact a Louisville Lawyer

Located in Louisville, Kentucky, and serving clients across the state, the Slechter Law Firm, PLLC is committed to holding responsible parties accountable for their negligent or wrongful actions. Their attorneys understand the pain and distress that comes with discovering that a loved one has been harmed in a place that should have ensured their safety. 

Their extensive knowledge of personal injury law, combined with a deep dedication to their clients, allows them to navigate these complex cases effectively. They work tirelessly to gather evidence, consult with medical experts, and build a compelling case to prove negligence on the part of the nursing home. With the Slechter Law Firm, PLLC by your side, you can rest assured that your case is in capable hands. 

No one should suffer due to the negligent actions of a nursing home. If you or a loved one have been affected by improper equipment use in a nursing home, don't hesitate to seek legal help. Reach out to the Slechter Law Firm, PLLC today for a consultation. Their commitment to justice and compassion for their clients make them the perfect advocates for clients throughout Lousville and Lexington.