Nursing Home Abuse in Michigan
It's estimated that more than 73,000 Michigan seniors are the victims of elder abuse each year. If you know or suspect that someone you love has been abused, there are several immediate steps you can take to address the situation. Contact law enforcement authorities, hire a Michigan nursing home abuse attorney and, if possible, remove the victim from the abusive situation or remain with the victim in an effort to prevent further abuse.
What Is Elder Abuse?
Elder abuse comes in many shapes and forms. According to a report by the Michigan Office of Services to the Aging:
"Elder abuse is commonly separated into three main categories: (a) physical abuse or neglect, in which a person is physically harmed, (b) psychological abuse, in which a person is manipulated, humiliated, or otherwise made to feel distress, and (c) financial abuse or exploitation, in which a person’s funds and property are misused or stolen from them."
When abuse occurs in a nursing home, long-term care facility or assisted-living facility, and when the abuser is a paid caretaker, then it is described as nursing home abuse.
Using a Michigan Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer to Address Abuse
Any senior citizen can become an abuse victim, but a few groups are at higher risk. Those include people who don't have a close family support system, those with diminished mental capacity and those who require a significant amount of caregiver assistance.
If you know or think that a loved one is the victim of nursing home abuse in Michigan, you must take immediate steps to safeguard the victim and stop the abuse. You should:
- Contact Michigan Adult Protective Services as well as the police in the town where the abuse is occurring
- Hire a Michigan nursing home abuse lawyer
- Take any necessary actions to protect your family member from further harm
Law enforcement will investigate the abuse, including interviewing witnesses and examining other evidence. If there's sufficient evidence of abuse, the abuser will be arrested and charged with the crime. At that point, the abuser can either plead guilty or plead not guilty and go to trial. If the abuser pleads guilty or is found guilty, he or she faces fines, probation or even time in jail.
Regardless of the outcome of the criminal investigation, a Michigan elder abuse attorney can also pursue a civil legal action on the victim's behalf. A civil lawsuit allows the victim to recover money, known as damages, as compensation for the abuse. An attorney can also act as a liaison between the abuse victim, his or her family and law enforcement authorities to track the progress of the criminal investigation and facilitate interviews with the abuse victim.
Questions to Ask When Hiring a Michigan Elder Abuse Attorney
Before hiring a Michigan nursing home abuse attorney, you'll want to schedule a preliminary interview, also known as an initial consultation. This meeting serves as an opportunity to get to know the attorney, tell the lawyer about the abuse and decide whether you want to hire the attorney.
Bring to the meeting a list of questions you'd like to ask the attorney. Focus on topics that will help you decide if you'd like to hire the lawyer. For example:
- How long have you practiced law? Do you only represent nursing abuse victims or do you do other types of legal work?
- What are our legal options? What are the pros and cons of each option? How would you recommend we proceed?
- If we pursue a civil lawsuit, how much money could we reasonably expect to receive?
- How do you charge for your services?
- Would you personally be handling our case or would it be handled by another lawyer in your office? Could we meet others who would be involved?
Find & Hire a Michigan Nursing Home Abuse Attorney
If someone you love is the victim of Michigan nursing home abuse, you can’t afford to wait. You must act quickly to stop the abuse, and Michigan nursing home abuse attorneys can help you take action.
Attorneys.com offers a fast and free service that can connect you with Michigan elder abuse lawyers in your area, whether you live in Detroit, Grand Rapids, Warren or elsewhere in the state. Call us at 877-913-7222 or fill out the form on this page. We'll ask you a few simple questions, then quickly connect you with an attorney in your area.