Texas Nursing Home Abuse Attorney
According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, Texas has 1,227 skilled nursing facilities, which is more than any other state. Nearly 100,000 seniors currently reside in nursing homes and assisted living facilities statewide. The decision to move a parent or elderly relative into a nursing home is difficult. When the transition is complete, family members expect their loved ones to receive quality care. As a society, we are taught to treat elders with dignity and respect. However, the people who are entrusted with their care don’t always follow this credo.
Nursing Home Lawsuits
At The Law Office of Joel A. Levine, Personal Injury Lawyer, we have a proven record of protecting the rights of seniors and holding nursing homes accountable for the actions of their employees. When it comes to the care of loved ones, everyone wants the best. That’s why it’s essential to hire a qualified nursing home abuse attorney. Joel Levine has been practicing elder law in central Texas since 2008. He understands what it takes to win your case and will guide you through the process personally.
If your relative was injured or neglected while in the care of a nursing home, we’ll help you recover compensation for additional medical care, pain and suffering and any financial losses or emotional hardship that your loved one endured. We will gather evidence, assess the facts and present your case before a jury. A powerful litigation strategy, a complete body of evidence and significant trial experience ensure that your loved one will receive the compensation due to them.
Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect
Elderly abuse is a widespread problem that doesn’t receive enough attention. Instances of abuse and neglect can occur any time and at the most prestigious nursing facilities. When family members aren’t present, mistreatment is more likely to happen. Nursing home abuse can occur at the hands of a caregiver or even another resident. Either way, the facility is responsible for failing to meet the accepted standard of care.
Even when instances of neglect or abuse are reported, facilities often conceal the extent of the situation. A congressional report found that about 30 percent of nursing facilities were cited for at least one violation in the two-year investigation period. At least 10 percent of complaints involved serious incidents that had the potential to harm, severely injure or even kill the resident.
In Texas and many other states, elder abuse laws require anyone to alert law enforcement to abuse, neglect or any form of physical or financial exploitation involving an elderly individual. Nursing facilities have a duty to self-report falls, lapses in care and all medical treatment. Unfortunately, many elder care providers don’t follow the rules. More than 40 percent of the time, instances of nursing home neglect are only revealed after a family member, fellow resident or community ombudsman makes a complaint. This is unacceptable. If a facility director, caregiver or company is responsible for nursing home negligence, they need to be dealt with according to Texas law.
Elder Abuse Laws
To prevent this widespread problem, government leaders in Austin TX have created a bill of rights to protect those in the care of nursing facilities. This legislation requires assisted living facilities to make residents aware of their rights, to allow them to participate in their treatment plan, to let them manage their own finances and to permit them to see visitors freely. Residents have a right to choose their own doctor and pharmacy. Providers aren’t permitted to use physical restraints or pharmaceutical sedation without reason. They aren’t allowed to prohibit residents from participating in community activities. Furthermore, residents and family members have a right to review medical records, charts and findings from all official inspections. Residents also have a right to file a complaint without fear of retaliation.
Examples of Elderly Abuse
Elder abuse can manifest itself in many ways, including physical injury, emotional trauma and depression. Because many seniors are afraid to complain, family members need to be involved and inquire after their well-being. Being an active participant in a loved one’s care is the best way to prevent nursing home abuse. If you believe that something is wrong, ask questions, and familiarize yourself with these common signs of nursing home neglect.
- Bed sores
- Unexplained bleeding
- Changes in mood
- Poor hygiene
Nursing home negligence has severe consequences. If your loved one isn’t receiving the kind of care you expect, contact a nursing home abuse attorney immediately. You can visit our office in Austin TX, or we can come to you. The law office of Joel A. Levine represents clients throughout central Texas. Attorney Joel Levine has been serving the local community since 2008, and he will work hard to take your nursing home lawsuit to trial and achieve a successful verdict. Call our office today to schedule a free consultation.
FAQs Nursing Home Abuse Attorney
What type of abuse occurs in nursing homes?
Nursing home abuse can take many forms from abusive actions to neglect. Physical, emotional, sexual, and even financial abuse can occur. Neglect is another form of abuse, where a nursing home facility fails to provide necessary care resulting in negative health consequences.
What is financial abuse from a nursing home?
A nursing home may financially abuse patients and families in a variety of ways. The facility may bill for a higher amount than what was agreed upon or add in additional fees and charges. You may be charged for services that are not being provided.
How will I know if my loved one is being abused?
There are signs you can look for that may indicate an abusive situation. Obvious signs are bed sores, bruises, and other injuries. Less obvious signs would be if your loved one suddenly shows an increased level of anxiety or their eating and sleeping habits change.
Is there any way to prevent nursing home abuse?
The best thing you can do is to visit your loved one frequently at the nursing facility. Show up unannounced at different times of the day. Ask them about their daily activities and about the care they receive. Thoroughly research any nursing home facility you are considering.
How do I know what is legal when it comes to my loved one’s care?
You may be wondering whether some of the behaviors of the staff that you’ve seen or heard your loved one tell you about are legal. This is when it helps to speak to a lawyer. If you have the slightest worry that something isn’t right, contact the Law Office of Joel A. Lavine to discuss your concerns.
How will I know if a nursing home is understaffed?
Staffing regulations for nursing homes is a state mandated requirement. Number of staff and level of training factors into a nursing home’s rating. There is not necessarily a set minimum number of staff required, making it difficult to determine whether staffing is sufficient. If you have concerns about low staffing, contact us.
What is the statute of limitations for filing a nursing home abuse lawsuit?
As with other personal injury lawsuits in the state of Texas, you have 2 years from the date the abuse occured to file a lawsuit. It may be difficult to determine when the abuse first occurred in cases of ongoing abuse, but it is best to speak to a lawyer as soon as you are aware of the abuse.
What if I can’t afford to pay a lawyer?
Nursing home abuse attorneys work on a contingency basis, meaning the attorney will only receive payment if there is compensation awarded in a lawsuit. You and your attorney will establish a contract before the lawsuit is filed stating what percentage they will receive.
How much will I receive in financial compensation?
Nursing home abuse cases vary. The best way to get a general idea of what your case may be worth is to discuss it with an attorney. Contact the Law Office of Joel A. Lavine today to schedule a consultation.
Helpful Tips for Personal Injury Cases:
Call 911 and provide all pertinent details regarding the accident.
Never leave the scene of the injury.
Always request a police report.
Take as many photos of the scene as possible.
Secure personal information from any witnesses.
Never sign any paperwork without an attorney present.
Obtain copies of all medical documents regarding your injuries.
Contact our office to begin an immediate investigation.
Texas Nursing Home Abuse Attorney
In a busy city like Austin TX, motorists frequently share the road with bicycle riders. Riding a bicycle is a great way to get exercise and enjoy the outdoors. You might also ride your bike to and from work. Some cyclists make a living as interoffice couriers or pedicab operators. Whatever your reason for riding, it's important for cyclists to obey traffic rules, watch out for errant drivers and make safe decisions. Bike accidents have the potential to cause severe and possibly fatal injuries. The risk of severe injuries in a bicycle accident is extremely high because riders have little or no physical protection aside from gloves and a helmet. Some of the most common injuries associated with these types of accidents are road rash, closed head injuries, brain damage, contusions, lacerations and broken bones.
Regardless of how severe the injuries are, the elements of proving a bicycle accident case are similar to any other auto accident. To recover compensation for your injuries, medical expenses, lost earnings, diminished earning capacity and other damages, your bicycle accident lawyer needs to prove that the motorist was negligent. This can be a complex process. First, a professional personal injury lawyer will gather the facts, document the accident scene and work with professionals to establish the conditions and situation that caused the collision. In a case like this, you might be fighting against a league of attorneys who work for the driver's insurance company and who will try to blame you. At the law office of Joel A. Levine, we have been handling bicycle and pedestrian accident cases since 2008. We are committed to recovering the fullest compensation for your injuries.
Bicycle Accident Statistics
The statistics on bicycle collisions are shocking. In Texas alone, approximately 42 cyclists die each year after collisions with cars and trucks. Nearly three-quarters of cyclists are concerned about safety and accidents. However, motorists are often oblivious to the bicycles that are on the road with them. In Austin TX, the police department reports that the city experiences an average of 315 bike collisions annually, including some 280 with injuries. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration acknowledges that accidents involving bicycles are under-reported. It's estimated that only 10 percent of injury cases are ever reported by law enforcement. Nevertheless, statistics are grave.
- Intoxicated motorists are responsible for 40 percent of fatal bike accidents.
- About half of all reported bike accidents involve motorized vehicles.
- Approximately 75 percent of accidents occur at or near intersections.
- Most fatal bicycle collisions take place between 4 a.m. and 8 p.m.
- One-fifth of fatal accidents occur between 8 p.m. and midnight.
- Cyclists accounts for 2 percent of all accident-related deaths.
Bicycle Accidents and Negligence
To determine responsibility in an accident case, your attorney will review the facts to establish whether the driver's negligence caused or contributed to the accident and subsequent injuries. The driver might be responsible if your attorney can prove that they cut into a designated bike lane, ran through a stop sign, were distracted or failed to observe a cyclist. Your bicycle accident lawyer can secure phone records to see if the driver was talking on the phone or texting at the time of the accident. Violations related to speeding, drunk driving and traffic signals are extremely effective pieces of evidence when establishing the driver's negligence.
Occasionally, cyclists are responsible for accidents. When bicycling in Austin or anywhere in central Texas, cyclists are expected to follow state and city laws. City ordinances and sections of the Texas Transportation Code require bicycles to have functional reflectors and headlights. Under these laws, a bicycle is a vehicle. Therefore, all bicycles are required to follow traffic signals and obey all traffic laws. For example, bicycles are required to use the right-most lane or shoulder and ride in the direction of traffic. A violation of any state or city rule permits law enforcement officers to initiate a traffic stop. Tickets are issued for violations and can become part of the cyclist's permanent driving record. Frequent bicycle violations recorded by the Austin Police Department include missing reflectors, failing to use a headlight after dark, running red lights, failing to obey stop signs, cycling the wrong way on a one-way street and cycling on sidewalks in business districts.
Hiring a Bicycle Accident Attorney
If you have been involved in an accident, you need effective representation from a qualified personal injury attorney. Injuries sustained in a bike accident can be severe and have long-lasting implications. In extreme circumstances, an accident lawsuit can become a wrongful death case if the cyclist dies due to their injuries.
At The Law Office of Joel A. Levine, we provide professional, competent representation and legal assistance to cyclists and other accident victims throughout central Texas. We offer free consultations and a contingency fee plan, so you don't have to pay anything unless we win your case. If you are unable to come to our office due to your injuries, our bicycle accident lawyer will come to you. Whether we provide legal advice or take your case to a jury trial, we aim to make the process clear, transparent and as easy as possible for you and your family. Call us today to take the first step toward recovering the compensation that you deserve after a bicycle accident injury.
Frequently Asked Questions
What types of injuries can result from a bicycle accident?
You can sustain a lot of injuries if you are involved in a bicycle accident. You can be thrown from your bicycle, which can cause everything from cuts, scratches, abrasions and bruises to broken bones to severe head trauma. The extent of the injuries you sustain typically are influenced by what hit you, such as another bicyclist or a car, the speed at which you and the other vehicle were traveling, and whether you were wearing a helmet or any protective gear.
What should you do after a bicycle accident?
After a bicycle accident, you should exchange information with whoever hit you, such as another bicyclist or a driver. Be sure to get their full name, address, driver's license information and insurance information. Another step you will want to take is obtain the names, phone numbers and addresses of all the witnesses who may have witnessed the accident. If possible, take pictures of the accident scene, showing anything that may have led to the accident, such as a driver running a red light or turning into a bike lane. Finally, obtain medical treatment. Bicycle accidents can cause internal injuries, so you should see a doctor if you feel pain.
Should I hire an attorney after a bicycle accident?
It is strongly recommended that you hire a personal injury attorney who has experience with bicycle accident cases after a bicycle accident occurs. Many insurance companies try to place fault on the bicyclist for the accident, trying to reduce or eliminate their insured party's responsibility in the accident. A lawyer can fight to show why the other party was at fault and why they should be responsible for your injuries. Additionally, an attorney can help you recover the maximum amount of money that you may be entitled to by properly valuing your case and fighting for the money you deserve.
How long do you have to file a lawsuit after a bicycle accident?
Each state has a different timeline in which you must file a personal injury lawsuit. In the state of Texas, you generally have two years to bring a lawsuit against another party for damages and injuries you sustained following a bicycle accident. If you fail to bring a lawsuit against the party within this timeframe, the statute of limitations expires, and you can no longer bring a case against the other party. There are a few exceptions to this rule though, such as when a minor is involved, so it is best to talk to a lawyer about the specific timeframe for filing after your bicycle accident.
What damages can you expect from a bicycle accident?
If you have been involved in a bicycle accident, you may be wondering what damages you can collect as an injured bicyclist. There are different damages that you may be able to collect, depending on the circumstances. The most common types of damages that one collects following a bicycle accident as lost wages, money for past, current and future medical expenses related to the injuries sustained in the accident, and money for pain and suffering.
Call us today at 512-982-1510 for a free consultation.