Here are some frequently asked questions by those contacting our firm:
1. Who has the right to bring a lawsuit?
If the injured patient is alive and competent, then they can file the lawsuit on their own behalf. If the person is incompetent, it is a person named their power of attorney or legally appointed guardian. If the injured person died as a result of the abuse or negligence an Executor or Administrator of the estate can bring the claim on behalf of the family member's estate. We a help the client and their family determin the course to betaken and help petition the surrogates.
2. When and Why Should I retain a Lawyer?
We recommend retaining an attorney as soon as possible. As it costs nothing to consult our firm, and we only get paid if we make a recovery, there is no cost to you in making a call. The sooner we get involved, the better. After an attorney is retained, an extensive investigation needs to be conducted. Medical records, incident reports and hospital records must be obtained and reviewed by an attorney and/or medical or nursing examiner. Interviews with potential witnesses should be conducted as well. These steps will determine whether the facility or person was negligent in the care and treatment of the patient.
3. What should I do if I suspect neglect?
Some residents may not even be able to communicate that nursing home abuse is occurring due to physical or mental limitation. If there are any signs or indicators that nursing home abuse is present, immediate action should be taken. Keep a written journal of the incidents of abuse and neglect. Document the date and time it was observed and staff on duty at the time. Take photographs of the facility's conditions and of the patient. This will help secure evidence if you want to pursue legal action.
If you feel a resident is not being properly cared for you should:
- Immediately report the incident to the Director of the facility
- Note the time, place and manner in which the neglect occurred
- The name of any personnel you believe may have committed the abuse or neglect
- The names of other personnel responsible for the patient's care
- Any previous incidents of suspected abuse and neglect
- Contact a attorney familiar with handling nursing home and other elder care abuse cases such as Flanzig and Flanzig at 1-866-Flanzig.
4. What does it cost to bring a lawsuit for elder abuse?
The short Answer is nothing out of pocket to you. The consultation is free. We only get paid if we make a recovery for you or your family. We will lay out the expenses necessary in the investigation of the case, incudes experts, medical records and associated court costs. The expenses are repaid out of the recovery first, before any fee is paid or distribution of the recovery is made to the client. Our fee is in accordance with the New York Court Rules and is set forth in a retainer agreement between the firm and client.