Residents of nursing homes in Pennsylvania have legal rights to obtain justice for the injuries which occur as a result of accidents, assaults, and neglect. There are two types of cases: criminal and civil. Both can help a victim of nursing home injury or neglect obtain justice. However, these two types of cases are very different in how they are litigated and the ultimate outcome.
Deciding whether to bring a criminal and/or civil case is a very important decision, one that should not be made without speaking to a nursing home injury lawyer. A lawyer will evaluate the case and advise you of the best way to proceed.
Criminal Legal Rights of Victims of Nursing Home Abuse & Assault
Nursing home residents who are victims of assaults or abuse, including physical and sexual assault, have the right to file a criminal complaint with the local law enforcement agency. Whether a case will be investigated and ultimately prosecuted will depend entirely on the local police department and the local District Attorney’s office. While the victim in a criminal case has the ability to voice their concerns about the case, they will not have any major decision making abilities. That is because the case will be brought by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, on behalf of the victim.
In nursing home abuse and assault cases, perpetrators are often employees of the nursing home or fellow residents. Assaults by nursing home employees are very common and often underreported. In addition, resident on resident assaults can also occur. In these kinds of situations, perpetrators may be charged with various crimes including assault, sexual assault, conspiracy, etc. Read more about criminal nursing home assault and abuse cases here.
Civil Legal Rights of Victims of Nursing Home Negligence
The Pennsylvania civil justice system is very different from the criminal one. In civil nursing home negligence cases, perpetrators can be held liable not only for assault and abuse, but also for any act of negligence which led to an accident or injury. This includes neglect, failure to provide maintenance, failure to dispense medications, allowing bed sores to develop, etc. Residents can also file lawsuits for fall accidents such as slip and fall or trip and fall accidents.
In civil cases, the defendants or those sued in the lawsuit often include:
- nursing home employees,
- nursing home companies/corporations,
- nursing home operating companies, and
- nursing home owners.
The outcome in civil cases is often financial compensation for medical bills, economic losses, and pain and suffering. Read more about civil lawsuits in nursing home cases.
PA Nursing Home Accident Lawyer
If you would like a free case review to discuss your legal rights in a nursing home injury or neglect case, please call our office. Our lawyers specialize in handling nursing home negligence cases. (215) 985-0777
Disclaimer: This website does not create any attorney-client relationship or provide legal advice. Our lawyers provide legal advice only after accepting a case. It is imperative that any action taken is done on advice of counsel. Read full disclaimer below.