Nursing Home Abuse in Arizona
The elderly are among the country's most vulnerable populations. There are a number of laws and programs in place to prevent elder abuse, but that doesn't prevent it entirely. If you or someone you love has been the victim of elder abuse, nursing home neglect or nursing home abuse, contact an Arizona nursing home abuse attorney immediately.
Arizona elder abuse attorneys can:
- Help stop the abuse
- Work with police and prosecutors to ensure the abuser is prosecuted
- Help the victim get compensation for his or her injuries through civil litigation
Types & Signs of Elder Abuse
The elderly and those in nursing homes can be abused at the hands of any number of people and organizations.
In some instances, the nursing home itself is the abuser because it lacks the funds to properly staff the facility, care for patients and provide the tools and equipment to keep them safe. One or several nursing home staff may also be responsible for abusing the residents under their care. And family—often a spouse or adult child—trusted friends and even strangers can be responsible for neglecting, abusing or exploiting the elderly.
Arizona elder abuse takes many forms, and can include:
- Physical abuse
- Emotional or psychological abuse
- Sexual abuse
- Financial abuse
- Verbal abuse
Each of these types of abuse comes with its own set of warning signs. For example, someone who's the victim of financial abuse may suddenly be unable to afford food and other essentials. An Arizona nursing home abuse victim of verbal abuse may suddenly express a fear or dislike of a specific staff member. Any unexplained change in health, attitude or behavior can be a sign of potential abuse.
Addressing Arizona Nursing Home Neglect & Abuse
You must take immediate action if you or a loved one is the potential victim of nursing home abuse or elder abuse in Arizona.
After you've ensured the immediate safety and security of your family member or loved one, there are several steps you can take:
- Contact the Arizona Department of Health Services Office of Long-Term Care, the Office of State Long-Term Care Ombudsman or Adult Protective Services. (Note that the first two agencies deal specifically with residents in Arizona nursing homes and assisted living facilities. If your family member is the victim of Arizona elder abuse outside of a long-term care facility, you'll want to contact Adult Protective Services.)
- Find and hire Arizona nursing home abuse attorneys to ensure the situation is dealt with appropriately in both criminal and civil courts of law.
Arizona police and prosecutors will investigate the allegations and, if there's sufficient evidence, pursue criminal charges against the person, people or organization responsible for the abuse.
However, even if there are criminal charges directly related to your loved one's abuse, the criminal case will not compensate your family member for his or her injuries. For that, you'll need to file a civil nursing home abuse lawsuit or elder care abuse lawsuit in Arizona courts. Your Arizona nursing home abuse lawyer will take responsibility for handling that lawsuit.
You'll want to consider an Arizona nursing home abuse lawsuit or Arizona elder care abuse lawsuit even if law enforcement doesn't pursue criminal charges or if the defendant is found not guilty. That's because the requirements are lower in a civil case. In a criminal case, someone is guilty if the judge or jury is convinced "beyond a reasonable doubt." In a civil case, the judge or jury looks at the preponderance of the evidence when deciding if the defendant is to blame.
If the judge or jury in a civil Arizona elder abuse case rules that there was abuse, then your loved one can receive compensation for his or her physical, mental and emotional injuries.
Find & Hire Arizona Nursing Home Abuse Lawyers
As soon as you suspect that someone is the victim of abuse or neglect, you should immediately hire an Arizona nursing home abuse attorney. Your loved one's health and well-being is at stake, and you can't afford to wait. Fortunately, Attorneys.com offers a free service that can quickly connect you with a local nursing home abuse attorney. To find an attorney, call us at 877-913-7222 or fill out the form on this page. Whether your loved one lives in Phoenix, Mesa, Chandler or elsewhere in Arizona, we can quickly connect you with a local lawyer.