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Nursing Homes Abuse Blog By Jonathan Rosenfeld

Wrongful Death

wrongful death casesWrongful Death Statutes & Nursing Home Lawsuits

Wrongful death and survival statutes can give family members peace of mind in standing up for the legal rights of a loved one after death. Through a wrongful death statute, a cause of action survives the life of a deceased person. This means that if your loved one experienced neglect or abuse in a nursing home and later died, then you can still file a nursing home wrongful death lawsuit after the death of your loved one. Surviving family members can recover compensation that can be used to pay for outstanding medical bills and funeral expenses. In some cases, economic damages or damages for loss of companionship may also be available. Each state has its own Wrongful Death statute that specifies the total amount of damages that may be awarded to family members after the death of a loved one.

Nursing home lawyers can help you file a lawsuit under a wrongful death statute if your loved one has passed away. Our lawyers are ready to assist you in your time of need and provide you with direction through legal recourse. Nursing home wrongful death lawsuits can help you begin to move forward in your life and hold a nursing home accountable for the harm caused to your loved one.

What Needs to Be Proven in a Wrongful Death Claim?

When you are filing a wrongful death claim, it will be up to your lawyer to prove your case in court. This involves proving that the defendant’s conduct has been responsible for the death of your loved one. Second, your lawyer will need to show that a nursing home facility was negligent and liable for the death of your loved one. Third, there must be surviving family members of the deceased person that are the spouse, children, beneficiaries or dependents. Lastly, there must be monetary damages that have resulted from the decedent’s death.

The Many Forms of Neglect Under a Wrongful Death Claim

In proving a wrongful death claim, there are many forms of underlying neglect that can be used to support the claim. It is important for you to save any evidence that could be used in proving the underlying basis of a wrongful death claim, such as photographs of injuries, medical records, contaminated clothing, smart phone video recordings, saved testimony from employees and other evidence.

Some common types of neglect that can be used to prove a wrongful death claim are development of bed sores, dehydration & malnourishment, use of chemical or physical restraints, physical abuse, a fall during an admission, sexual abuse, improper medical care, physical therapy malpractice, burns and other forms of neglect. You may also have records to show the improper treatment that your loved one received while on a ventilator. There may have been instances in which an untreated urinary tract infection or cerebral hemorrhage lead to a worsened condition or death of your loved one. Meeting with a nursing home lawyer early on in your case will ensure that you preserve this evidence and gather any other evidence that may be necessary for your case.

Filing a Wrongful Death Lawsuit within the Statute of Limitations

Family members should also be aware that there is only a fixed period of time in which a wrongful death claim may be filed after the death of a loved one. In most states, this fixed period of time ranges from six months to three years. By meeting with a lawyer, you can ensure that you do not lose the opportunity to file a wrongful death claim and can have your wrongful death nursing home case filed in court as soon as possible.

Unfortunately, many incidents resulting in an injury to a nursing home patient may eventually result in their death. Consequently, legal action may be necessary to recover for the suffering the person went through following the incident and for the loss the family has endured following their passing. Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers will evaluate the dynamics of each case in order to fully prosecute each case under the applicable laws.


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Many Wrongful Death Cases Go Unnoticed at Skilled Nursing Facilities

Posted in Wrongful Death

By legal definition, wrongful death is any incident in which a person dies either due to an intentional act or negligence, which is classified as carelessness or inaction that has caused harm. Unfortunately, poor care in nursing homes is responsible for many premature deaths in elderly patients. However, many of these premature deaths are never… Continue Reading

Many Suspicious Elder Deaths In Nursing Homes & Hospital Go Un-investigated

Posted in Neglect, Wrongful Death

[Photo Caption: A post-mortem investigation concluded that Joseph Shepter (above) died as a result of extreme neglect in a nursing home. (Photo Courtesy of the Shepter family)] At first glance, nothing about William Neff’s death seemed unusual. The 83-year-old WWII veteran had spent his final days in an assisted living facility in Bucks County, Pa…. Continue Reading

Nursing Home’s Conduct In Wrongful Death Case Angers Jury—- To The Tune Of $200 Million

Posted in Elopement & Wandering, Litigation, Wrongful Death

After hearing the evidence in a wrongful death lawsuit involving an elderly woman’s fall at a Florida Nursing Home, a jury became so enraged by the conduct of the facility— that they chose to punish them the only way they could– by handing down a huge verdict against the facility. The trial centered around the… Continue Reading

Nursing Home’s Failure To Implement Fall Precautions Results In Death Of Patient

Posted in Nursing Home Falls, Subdural Hematoma, Wrongful Death

Recognizing the significant threat that ‘falls’ pose to patients in nursing homes, federal regulations impose a duty on facilities to assess each patient at the time they are admitted (and similarly reassess on a regular basis) to determine the likelihood of the patient is at risk falling and then create a plan of care for… Continue Reading

Suicide Investigation Reveals Nursing Home Ignored Patients Self Destructive Behavior

Posted in Wrongful Death

An investigation into the suicide of a young man at a California nursing home reveals a disturbing situation where a facility obviously ignored the man’s mental health needs. On February 28, 2011 the patient commit suicide at Verdugo Valley Skilled Nursing and Wellness Center when he discharged a fire extinguisher into his mouth.  While the… Continue Reading

Will More Post-Mortem Investigations Help Reveal More Instances Of Nursing Home Abuse?

Posted in Nursing Home Abuse, Wrongful Death

Acknowledging situations where ‘accidential’ or ‘suspcious’ nursing home deaths may have gone without any formal investigation, South Carolina officials are considering ways to effectively investigate these situations. Under the current system in South Carolina, after a nursing home patient dies from ‘natural causes’ the body may be transferred to a funeral home without any involvement… Continue Reading

Inadequate Staffing Alleged In Wrongful Death Lawsuit Against Nursing Home

Posted in Wrongful Death

A Kentucky nursing home was named in a recently wrongful death lawsuit filed by the widow of a patient who was allegedly neglected at the facility.  Donna Anderson’s lawsuit cites inadequate staffing and ongoing deficiencies as the primary reasons for her husband’s physical decline and eventual death at Madison Manor nursing home. According to news… Continue Reading

Jury Blames Assisted Living Facility For Fall-Related Death Of 99-Year-Old Woman

Posted in Assisted Living Facilities, Nursing Home Falls, Wrongful Death

Perhaps one of the more frustrating aspects of my job is attempting to convey the value of a senior’s life to a defense lawyer, insurance carrier or jurors.  Particularly, when evaluating the value of a nursing home or assisted living case, I find that people generally have a difficult time appreciating the significance of life’s… Continue Reading

Wrongful Death Lawsuit Claims That Assisted Living Facility Failed To Care For Vulnerable Patient

Posted in Assisted Living Facilities, Wrongful Death

The family of a resident at a Wisconsin assisted living facility has filed a lawsuit against the facility and it parent company, Assisted Living Concepts LTD, in relation to the events leading up to her death in 2010.  In particular, the lawsuit claims that Marilyn Brown was admitted to Cedar Gardens in July, 2008 for… Continue Reading

Illinois Nursing Home With Longtime Problems Named In Wrongful Death Lawsuit

Posted in Chicago Nursing Homes & Other Communities Within Illinois, Wrongful Death

A wrongful death lawsuit has been filed by the family of Doris Scharperkoetter in St. Clair County Circuit Court.  The lawsuit alleges that The Lincoln Home and its owner, Weiss Management Group LLC were negligent in the care of Ms. Scharperkoetter during the time she was a patient at the Belleville, IL nursing home. The… Continue Reading

Ohio Jury Awards Family $1 Million In Nursing Home Fall Lawsuit

Posted in Litigation, Nursing Home Falls, Wrongful Death

Nursing homes have an obligation to create and implement personalized care plans for every patient at their facility.  The care plan is not an optional activity, rather the plans are required by federal law.  Recognizing the threat of falling– and fall-related injuries– the care plan must assess and address each patients fall propensities. Particularly in… Continue Reading

Family Of Neglected Nursing Home Patient Receives $3.5 Million In Wrongful Death Settlement

Posted in Litigation, Neglect, Wrongful Death

The family of a 97-year-old Washington nursing home patient has received $3.5 million under the terms of a settlement related to a wrongful death lawsuit.  The lawsuit stems from neglectful care at Everett Rehabilitation and Care Center over the course of several months in 2007 when staff at the facility failed to provide medical treatment… Continue Reading

Bed Sores: Not Just A Pain In The Butt– More Like An Uncontrollable Killer

Posted in Bed Sore Lawsuit, Bed Sores, Pressure Sores, Decubitus Ulcers & Pressure Ulcers, Hospital Bed Sores, Sepsis, Wrongful Death

  Pressure sores (also referred to as bed sores, pressure ulcers, or decubitus ulcers) are an all too common and painful problem for nursing home residents.   Most pressure sores are preventable and are caused by faulty care where the nursing home or hospital does provide adequate care to prevent and treat bed sores.  Patients vulnerable to developing pressure sores are the elderly, people who are bedridden, and people with… Continue Reading

Wrongful Death Lawsuit Proceeds: New Court Decision Says Medicare Not Entitled To Portion Of Recovery

Posted in Litigation, Wrongful Death

A new court decision by the Eleventh Circuit in the matter of Bradley v. Sebelius, 2010 WL 3769132 (11th Cir. Sept. 29, 2010) helps clarify the murky area of the law as to who is exactly entitled to the proceeds from a wrongful death settlement proceeds in nursing home cases. In making its decision, the… Continue Reading

Wrongful Death Lawsuit Alleges That An Emertus Assisted Living Facilities Gross Neglect Of Dementia Patient Results In Death

Posted in Assisted Living Facilities, Elopement & Wandering, Wrongful Death

A wrongful death lawsuit has been filed against Ridgeland Assisted Living (Mississippi) and its parent company Emeritus Corporation following an incidnet at the facility when a dementia patient fell from a second story window. The lawsuit, filed by the daughter of the deceased resident, claims that despite multiple assurances from the facility, they failed to… Continue Reading

Failure To Properly Treat Surgical Wounds Results In Settlement Of Wrongful Death Case With Nursing Home

Posted in Infections In Nursing Homes, Wrongful Death

The Chicago Tribune reported on a story involving the $2 million settlement of a wrongful death lawsuit involving a patient at a Wisconsin nursing home who suffered complications from improperly cared for surgical wounds.  The patient identified as Cynthia Wilms, was admitted to Willows Nursing and Rehabilitation in 2007 following a hip replacement surgery.  According… Continue Reading

C-Diff Infection Alleged To Blame For Death Of Nursing Home Patient

Posted in Chicago Nursing Homes & Other Communities Within Illinois, Clostridium Difficile (C-Diff), Wrongful Death

A recently filed wrongful death lawsuit claims that clostridium difficile, or commonly known as C. Diff, is to blame for the death of a patient in an Illinois Nursing Home. The lawsuit alleges two short-term stays at Helia Healthcare facilities (Helia Healthcare of Energy and Helia Healthcare of Benton) are to responsible for the man’s… Continue Reading

New Illinois Court Decision Holds That No Punitive Damages Can Be Awarded In Survival Actions Involving Nursing Home Negligence

Posted in Chicago Nursing Homes & Other Communities Within Illinois, Litigation, Wrongful Death

Some of the substantial verdicts we have recently discussed at the Nursing Homes Abuse Blog here and here involve jury verdicts with punitive damage components.  While some of these verdicts may seem excessive, most of the time the damages are awarded because the facilities conduct was so extreme that it deserves to be punished.  In most jurisdictions,… Continue Reading

New Court Decision Allows Nursing Home Negligence Action To Proceed Against Facility Administrator

Posted in Litigation, Wrongful Death

Childs v. Pinnacle Health Care, LLC is a wrongful death and nursing home negligence case that was filed against Pinnacle Health Care, the nursing home corporation, and Carolyn English, its director of nursing. Pinnacle Health Care, LLC is a nursing home located in Waukegan, IL. The trial court dismissed with prejudice the three counts against the… Continue Reading

Nursing Home Injury Laws Establishes Itself As A Trusted Resource For Families Seeking Information Regarding Their Legal Rights

Posted in Medication Errors, Neglect, Nursing Home Abuse, Nursing Home Injury, Wrongful Death

Since its inception, Nursing Home Injury Laws has become a trusted resource for caregivers and families seeking reliable information in a time of need.  Nursing home injury laws provides a comprehensive compilation of state-by-state nursing home contacts, a glossary for common legal terms, resources and legal information should the need arise. In addition to important… Continue Reading

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