Montana Nursing Home Abuse Attorney

See What Makes Our Firm Unique  

Proudly Fighting For Your Family

If your loved one is experiencing abuse in his or her nursing home in Montana, you need an experienced Montana nursing home abuse lawyer who will fight for your family.

Elderly people are vulnerable and may be easily taken advantage of, especially in health-related settings. Entrusting the care of a loved one to a nursing home requires a great deal of confidence in the staff and the facility managers. Some people take advantage of the trust that families have in them. Any type of abuse occurring at a nursing home, whether it be physical, mental, emotional, or financial, must be stopped immediately. If you have a loved one in a Montana nursing home and you think someone is abusing or neglecting them, contact the Montana nursing home abuse attorneys at Odegaard Kovacich Snipes for help.

Nursing Home Abuse Statistics in the United States

Caregivers mistreat as many as 2 million people over the age of 65 in the United States each year. Unfortunately, it is estimated that people only report 1 of every 14 incidents of nursing home abuse to authorities, with physical abuse as the most common abuse reported. People older than 80 and people suffering from dementia are at the highest risk of suffering abuse. Of patients with dementia, 47% have suffered some type of abuse. A study detailed by NAELA of 2,000 nursing homes revealed that approximately 44% of elderly people suffer nursing home abuse and 95% of the cases of abuse go unreported.

Types and Symptoms of Nursing Home Abuse in Montana

The first indication of nursing home abuse is a seemingly inexplicable change in your loved one's mood or demeanor. If your loved one is more depressed or irritable than usual, and he or she is reluctant to discuss the situation, you are right to wonder why. Along with general changes in mood, there are more specific signs of abuse.

The first type of nursing home abuse is physical abuse, which can have many possible symptoms. Some indicators include:
  • Broken bones, sprains, or dislocations that he or she cannot explain
  • Bruising, scars, or welts
  • Signs of restraint such as rope burns or marks on his or her wrists
  • Failing to take his or her medication
  • Broken glasses
  • The caregiver refusing to let you be alone with your loved one
Another type of abuse an elderly person might suffer is emotional abuse. Symptoms of emotional abuse include:
  • Unusual behavior, including the symptoms of dementia (mumbling, sucking his or her thumb, or rocking)
  • Seeing the caregiver threaten, belittle, or exhibit controlling behavior toward your loved one
  • Nursing home abuse can also manifest in sexual abuse

Some of the indicators that your loved one may be experiencing sexual abuse:

  • Inexplicable sexually transmitted diseases
  • Genital infections
  • Bruising or marks near the genitals or breasts
  • Stained, bloody, or torn underwear
  • Vaginal or anal bleeding not caused by a preexisting medical condition

Nursing home residents may suffer from caregiver neglect. Though neglect is not as direct as physical, emotional, or sexual abuse, it can be just as serious.

Caregiver neglect occurs when the elderly person is:
  • Left alone in a public place
  • Living in unsafe, dirty, or unreasonably poor conditions
  • Dressed poorly for the weather
  • Not being bathed or being bathed inadequately
  • Experiencing bed sores
  • Experiencing unusual weight loss or dehydration

Elderly people can also be subject to financial abuse. Elderly people can be especially vulnerable to financial abuse because they often are not able to keep as careful track of their finances as they once were, trusting family and caregivers to take care of their financial situations.

Symptoms of Financial Abuse include:
  • Inexplicable changes in his or her financial situation
  • Unexplained withdrawals
  • Changes in power of attorney, life insurance, property titles, or wills
  • Missing cash
  • Added names to his or her credit card
  • ATM withdrawals that he or she could not have made
  • Unusual payments

Failure to Restrain

One type of nursing home abuse is neglecting care. People in nursing homes often need assistance in many different aspects of their daily lives. Restraint is a controversial and tricky subject in conversations about nursing home treatment. When a patient is a danger to him or herself or to others, the staff must exercise good judgment in deciding the extent of restraint to use. Most nursing homes try to use physical restraints as little as possible, as restraints can be physically and emotionally painful for the resident. Either overuse of restraints or failing to use restraints when called for are both forms of abuse. If a resident is hurting him or herself or others and staff members ignore it, they are exposing the residents and staff to potential physical harm.

Bedsores

Bedsores commonly develop when a person who is confined to bed has been left in the same position too long. They occur from constant pressure on the same area of the body, leading to tissue damage. If a nursing home resident has difficulty with mobility, he or she may need a staff member to help move to avoid developing painful bedsores. If a resident develops bedsores, the staff is neglecting him or her because they are failing to do what is necessary by helping the resident move to a different position on a regular schedule. The nursing home staff has the duty to keep residents as safe, healthy, and happy as possible. Caretaker neglect is a form of nursing home abuse.

Falls

An average-sized nursing home reports 200 falls every year. Injuries from falls can range from a bruise to some broken bones or worse. However, nursing home staff members are required to do everything they can to prevent residents from falling. If they do not clean up a spill, fix unstable stairs, or fail to remedy any other potentially dangerous condition, they are neglecting the residents.

Dehydration and Malnutrition

Some elderly people struggle with remembering to drink and eat an adequate amount. The nursing home is responsible for ensuring that residents are drinking enough water and eating enough food. If the resident shows signs of suffering from dehydration or malnutrition, it is the responsibility of the nursing home staff to be aware of the condition and do whatever it takes to make sure the resident is receiving the proper daily nutrition.

Assaults

Physical and sexual assaults are serious offenses in any circumstances. Assaults on elderly people in nursing homes by staff members are one of the worst forms of abuse. There is no circumstance that justifies a caregiver taking advantage of his or her power to assault a resident. Assault is a very severe form of nursing home abuse.

Medication Errors

Often, a nursing home resident is on one or more medications. Many residents struggle with remembering to take their medications and remembering the proper dosage. The nursing home staff is responsible for making sure that each resident takes the correct type and dose of his or her medication. It can be serious to miss a dose or take the wrong dose, sometimes even leading to death. It is vital that caregivers are attentive and careful about medications. Failing to help residents with their medications is a form of caregiver neglect.

Who Is Liable?

If someone at a nursing home is abusing your loved one, you have the right to file a claim against the nursing home. However, it can be difficult to prove nursing home abuse. Many of the elderly victims have a hard time identifying if a caregiver is abusing them and may not know how to communicate it to authorities. It is important that you keep an eye out for the signs, because it is possible that someone at a nursing home is abusing your loved one and he or she is not telling you.

If you want to file a claim against a nursing home, you must prove that the facility had a duty to keep your loved one safe, that it breached that obligation, and the nursing home's breach of this responsibility directly caused your loved one's injuries. You can help prove that the nursing home staff is abusing your loved one with photos of bruises, marks, and other physical signs of abuse. An attorney can be an invaluable ally in proving that abuse has occurred by calling on a network of medical consultants who can determine if abuse has taken place.

What Damages Can I Recover?

The court can award your loved one damages for any financial burdens caused by abuse sustained in the nursing home. Some of the financial expenses the court could compensate your loved one for include:

  • Value of stolen or damaged property
  • Medical expenses due to damage caused by the nursing home
  • Fees for mental health professionals or therapy required because of the abuse
  • Relocation expenses
  • Legal fees
  • Physical rehabilitation

The court could award damages to cover almost any expenses incurred because of the damage he or she suffered from the nursing home abuse.

Montana Nursing Home Abuse Attorney

If your loved one is experiencing abuse in his or her nursing home in Montana, you need an experienced Montana nursing home abuse lawyer who will fight for your family. The attorneys at Odegaard Kovacich Snipes have helped people all over Montana recover from a wide range of wrongful events. Our determined and compassionate lawyers have established a successful track record with even the most difficult and complex cases. We can offer you a free consultation so you can meet our team before deciding if we are the right team to represent you and your loved one. We charge on a contingency-fee basis, which means we will not charge you anything unless we win your case.

Contact Odegaard Kovacich Snipes for aggressive representation. We will do everything that we can to get you all the compensation you and your family deserve.

Highlights

Why Hire Odegaard Kovacich Snipes?

It is critical that you work with an attorney who has the experience, knowledge, and skill to handle cases involving both commercial and personal vehicle accidents. And, it is critical you hire an attorney who knows, thoroughly, the injury laws in Montana.

Peer Rated

Distinguished with the gold standard Martindale-Hubbell AV preeminent peer review rating.

No Risk

You pay nothing unless we recover financial compensation for you.

FREE Case Evaluation

We proudly offer FREE case evaluations.

Results

We have recovered over $500+ million for our clients.

Not Convinced Yet?

We are proud to have represeneted some of the best clients and get their life back. See what our clients have to say!

Client Testimonials