If your loved one was neglected, abused, or hurt in a nursing home, we can help you file a lawsuit to get just compensation. However, filing a lawsuit is easier said than done. There are numerous rules and procedures to follow when submitting your case to a court.
Filing a lawsuit against a nursing home begins with a complaint. However, the complaint is more than a mere grievance. Your complaint must contain specific technical information if you want to sue the nursing home responsible for your loved one’s injuries. Additionally, there are often issues as to whether the nursing homes is covered under Indiana’s Medical Malpractic Act or has obtained a mandatory arbitration agreement which further complications how to properly hold the nursing home responsible. An attorney’s skills are vital to making sure your case is properly pursued.
If you wish to investigate or sue a nursing home, you need the help of our Indiana nursing home injury attorneys. Holding nursing homes accountable is a complicated endeavor, and most people will find it difficult or impossible to pursue without legal assistance. Call Wruck Paupore at (219) 322-1166 for a free case review.
After conducting a thorough investigation of the nursing home’s misconduct, whether it is neglect or abuse, it is first necessary to determine whether the nursing home is covered under the Indiana Medical Malpractice Act. If they are, there are wide variety of procedures that must be followed before a lawsuit can be filed. Alternatively, the nursing home services agreement may contain a mandatory “arbitration clause” which requires that you submit your injury claims to an out-of-court dispute resolution process instead of filing a lawsuit. These agreements are, in our opinion, extremely unfair because they prevent a jury from hearing about what happened. In some instances these agreements may not be enforceable, and we will fight them wherever possible. When we review your case, we will discuss issues regarding the Medical Malpractice Act and mandatory arbitration clauses and whether they would apply in your situation.
Assuming that these restrictions do no apply to your case, a lawsuit against a nursing home in Indiana begins in much the same way as most other lawsuits: we must file a complaint with the court. A complaint is an allegation of wrongdoing or harm by the nursing home. Your complaint must contain specific details and information about your case to be filed. A complaint lacking such information may be rejected by the Court.
When we file your complaint, we must also serve notice upon the other parties involved, particularly the defendant. In this case, the defendant may be the nursing home and possibly individual staff members or administrators. This is to allow the defendants the opportunity to respond to our claims and begin building their own case. Increasingly, nursing homes use multiple corporate entities separate from the local nursing home to try and shield themselves from liability for misconduct. We will work to identify all of these potentially responsible entities and ensure that they are named as defendants in the lawsuit.
Once your complaint is filed and all necessary parties have been informed, we will deploy a variety of legal strategies and tactics to help prove your claims and get compensation for your loved one’s injuries. The civil procedures involved are complicated, and an experienced Indianapolis nursing home attorney can guide you through the requirements of your case.
When drafting your complaint, we must include specific information or the case will be rejected. One such important detail is the harm we believe your loved one suffered while living at the nursing home. In many cases against nursing homes, injuries are a result of negligence. In our complaint, we must explain that negligence and how it caused your loved one’s injuries.
Negligence involves the four critical elements of duty, breach, causation, and damages. We must describe the legal duty of care the nursing home owed your loved one, how they breached this duty, how the breach caused the injuries, and what injuries your loved one suffered. It is not enough to merely state that these things happened; there must be some articulable evidence we can point to to support your claims.
With that being said, we do not need to prove your claims in the complaint definitively. It is okay if we have not yet gathered all the necessary evidence to win your lawsuit at this stage. In fact, much of this evidence will be gathered during the civil litigation process known as discovery, which allows us to serve subpoenas on the nursing home for important documents, records, and training materials. It also allows us to take sworn statements of witnesses, known as depositions. We can file your complaint as long as we have enough evidence to justify filing the lawsuit.
There is a lot of information to take in when working to hold facilities accountable for their indifference and it is understandable to feel intimidated by the legal process. Our Fort Wayne nursing home injury attorneys have many decades of experience with these claims and will guide you through the entire process. We understand getting justice for your loved one is important and potentially stressful. We work to make the process as straightforward and simple as possible.
If we win your case at trial, damages may be awarded by the Court. However, damages are assessed and argued over long before your case goes to trial. In fact, we need to have damages figured out when we file your lawsuit, at least to a certain extent. The reality is that we are able to settle the vast majority of cases we handle before a case goes to trial — and frequently before we even have to file a lawsuit.
Common damages include physical injuries, medical bills, the cost of a new nursing home, the cost of home care if no other nursing home is available, emotional suffering, damaged property, and more. Perhaps the most important thing we have as humans is our dignity. If a careless facility takes that away from our loved ones, this is an element of loss that is difficult to even quantify. It is important in preparing your case that we are able to show how the nursing home stripped this dignity away and how it impacted the victim and their loved ones. Although there is no economic loss, this is nevertheless an extremely important part of your case for injuries and making sure that the full impact of the abuse is told is fundamentally important.
Our Hammond, IN nursing home injury attorneys will review the economic and non-economic losses you and your loved ones have suffered when we review your case.
What Happens After I File a Lawsuit Against a Nursing Home in Indiana?
After you file a lawsuit, the first thing to do is wait for a formal response from the defendants called an Answer. This is why it is important to serve notice on all the defendants; they must be given an opportunity to respond. The defendant will either admit or deny the allegations made in your complaint. Exactly which allegations are admitted or denied may come down to the defendant’s legal strategy. They may also assert a variety of “affirmative defenses” which are legal reasons why they claim they should not be held responsible.
Defendants usually deny the allegations made against them. If this happens, we can begin gathering more evidence using tools available in the legal discovery process and prove your claims of injuries to your loved one. The great majority of our cases will then settle prior to any trial. However, we will prepare your case for trial and we will be ready to fight to win in the event we do not receive a fair offer to resolve the case.
If your loved one was injured while living in a nursing home, our Indiana nursing home injury lawyers can help you file a lawsuit and get justice. Call Wruck Paupore Injury Lawyers at (219) 322-1166 for a free case review.
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Don is a founding partner and one of the nation’s top-ranked personal injury litigators. He is a member of the Multi-million Dollar Advocates Forum, which includes less than 1% of the nation’s trial lawyers, and awarded the highest ranking given by Martindale Hubbel and AVVO.
More importantly, Don understands representing personal injury victims is about more than recovering the best settlement: it’s about helping clients get back on their feet and supporting them in every aspect of their recovery.
In nearly all cases, our clients seek compensation from the wrongdoer’s insurance company. Before forming Wruck Paupore, Jason worked for a prominent law firm representing some of the world’s largest insurers. This experience gives Jason a deep understanding of the insurance industry and the strategies it uses to pay injury victims as little as possible.
Jason -- and our entire team -- put this inside knowledge to work to force insurance companies to pay what is actually owed. Often, we use the insurance company’s own tactics against them as we fight for the full compensation our client deserves.
For more than four decades, Keith has been fighting for injury victims. During that time, he’s watched the insurance industry change, with insurers now more interested in protecting their stock price than treating injury victims fairly.
Since the beginning, Keith has put people first. From his childhood in Gary, Indiana during the 1960’s and working his way through law school, Keith has risen to become one of the Midwest’s most respected trial lawyers. He has never forgotten that being a lawyer is about helping people -- and seeing injury victims through struggles in a way that could change their lives forever.
Over the decades, Keith, Don and Jason have fought relentlessly for clients, even when other lawyers have said the case was impossible to win.