Nursing Home Abuse in Virginia
Anyone who's spent much time with the elderly knows the frustrations that can sometimes exist. You have to repeat yourself. Simple tasks become time consuming. They're forgetful. It's easy for a caretaker to become stressed out and short tempered—but it's no excuse for elder abuse. It's estimated that an elderly person in the United States is abused every five seconds. If you know or think that a loved one is being abused, contact the police and a Virginia nursing home abuse attorney immediately.
Virginia Elder Abuse Basics
Elder abuse is a crime in Virginia. It comes in many shapes and forms, and can include:
- Physical abuse
- Sexual abuse
- Mental abuse
- Verbal abuse
- Exploitation, including financial exploitation
When elder abuse occurs in a nursing home, assisted-living facility or long-term care facility, it may also be called nursing home abuse.
Getting Help from a Virginia Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer
If you are aware of elder abuse or nursing home abuse in Virginia, you should take several immediate steps.
You'll want to contact law enforcement authorities. This can include police in the town or county where the abuse occurs, local social service agencies and the Office of the State Long-Term Care Ombudsman (if the abuse is occurring in a Virginia nursing home). Law enforcement will begin an investigation and press criminal charges against the abuser if sufficient evidence exists. If the abuser is found guilty, he or she could be sentenced to probation, jail, fines and loss of professional licenses.
If you can safeguard the abused senior without risking your own safety, you should take appropriate steps to shield them from the abuse.
You should also hire a nursing home abuse attorney, who can help pursue a civil personal injury lawsuit against the abuser. Although the abuser may be required to pay fines as a result of the criminal case, that money does not get paid to the abuse victim. A civil lawsuit against the abuser is the only way to compensate the victim for medical expenses related to the abuse as well as other abuse-related costs.
Find & Hire a Virginia Elder Abuse Lawyer
Under Virginia law, you normally have two years from the date of abuse to file a personal injury lawsuit against the abuser. While this may seem like a long period of time, it can pass quite quickly. Lawsuits take time to prepare, so you'll want to hire Virginia nursing home abuse attorneys as soon as possible after abuse occurs. You do not need to wait until the criminal investigation is complete. Find out more about some other frequently asked questions.
Attorneys.com offers a free service that can quickly connect you to Virginia elder abuse attorneys in your area. To start the process, call us at 877-913-7222 or fill out the form on this page. Whether you're in the Norfolk or Virginia Beach area, Richmond, Roanoke, Arlington or elsewhere in the state, we can put you in touch with a local lawyer who has experience representing Virginia nursing home abuse victims.