Assisted Living Abuse Lawyer South Carolina

South Carolina Assisted Living Abuse Lawyer

We all want to be reassured that our loved ones in competent and responsible hands when they enter an assisted living facility. It’s true that of the nearly 200,000 nursing home facilities across the state of South Carolina that are large numbers of dedicated workers. It’s also true though, that just a few bad apples can spoil everything. And in this context, “spoil everything” has the terrible meaning of an elderly loved one being neglected, exploited, or abused. A South Carolina assisted living abuse lawyer can investigate what’s happening and determine if there is cause to bring a lawsuit against the facility. 

Mann Blake & Jackson has taken on difficult cases against powerful health care institutions and been successful. We’ve won verdicts that have soared past the $50 million threshold, and we want to fight for you next. From our Columbia office, we serve all of South Carolina. Call today at (803) 525-1645 or contact us online to set up a consultation. 

What Do I Do if I Suspect Abuse in Assisted Living? 

The loved ones of an assisted living resident may become suspicious of abuse through various signs. Emotional abuse might be tipped off if the resident seems excessively agitated, depressed or fearful—especially if that happens in the presence of particular staffers. Neglect can be spotted if things like bed sores develop from a lack of being turned over. 

If loved ones notice the staffers seem to be always overworked and, on the go, unable to spend appropriate time with each resident, that could be a tipoff that management is not putting the necessary manpower in place to provide the proper care. A resident that shows bruises or any other signs of bodily damage may well be subjected to direct physical abuse. 

The warning signs may not be proof of abuse, but they are just that—warning signs, that demand further investigation. The first step is to report that abuse to the state of South Carolina’s department of Adult Protective Services. The next step is to call an experienced South Carolina assisted living abuse attorney from our office to help lead up an investigation that will be in addition to that was the state investigators out of Columbia do. 

What Constitutes Assisted Living Abuse in South Carolina? 

To be considered abuse according to the letter of the law, the victim must meet the legal definition of “vulnerable”. In the state of South Carolina, that definition applies to anyone over the age of 18 who has some type of handicap—physical or mental—that prevents them from caring for themselves or providing their own protection. As lawyers we never like to say certain things are “always” true, but we can safely say that it would some very unusual circumstances for any assisted living resident to not meet the definition of vulnerable. 

There must then be a specific incident or pattern of behavior that meets the standard of abuse, neglect, or exploitation. This incident or pattern must have taken place within the assisted living community and at the hands of its staff. It can also apply in cases where the resident harms themselves if it can be demonstrated that this self-harm could have been reasonably foreseen and was not monitored in a reasonable way. 

That’s the legal standard that loved ones and their legal counsel must prove in order to file a lawsuit. It’s what the state must prove if a District Attorney were to bring criminal charges. The question then becomes this—how do you prove it? 

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Proving Assisted Living Abuse

The work of family and friends who visit the resident can be invaluable in an investigation. Documentation of the resident’s physical condition through cellphone photos can be introduced as evidence. Maintaining journals of the resident’s emotional conditions can certainly show patterns, especially if the family keeps the journals consistently over a period of time.  This type of investigative work from the family may be even more necessary when the resident is memory-impaired and unable to adequately recall incidents or the staffers who perpetrated those incidents. 

The records of the facility itself can also be examined. That includes everything from the resident’s medical records, their treatment schedule, how well the facility is staffed and what the qualifications of the resident staffers are. Keep in mind, that an assisted living facility has undertaken basic contractual obligations to its residents and their families. If they fail to hire the right staff—either in sufficient quantity or with sufficient qualifications—that can be the root cause of neglect or abuse, and may provide the basis for a lawsuit. 

Relentless Lawyers for Serious Cases

The South Carolina assisted living facility lawyers at Mann Blake & Jackson have extensive experience taking on difficult cases that require diligent investigation of seemingly powerful institutions. We don’t back down from these fights and we’ve notched some big victories. No lawyer can ever promise a future result in a specific case, but we can say that at Mann Blake & Jackson, we’ll give your case the legal effort and fighting spirit it deserves, and that our track record is marked with successes.

 

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