Santa Fe Nursing Home Abuse Lawyers

Santa Fe nursing home negligence attorneys

The neglect and abuse that is routinely experienced by nursing home residents is shocking and disturbing. Many of these facilities are understaffed and stressed-out employees often take their frustrations out on residents. Understaffing also prevents residents from receiving the proper care and attention they need.

If your loved one was abused or neglected at a nursing home in the Santa Fe area, contact the Santa Fe nursing home negligence lawyers at PKSD. Partner Jeff Pitman has been fighting for neglected nursing home abuse victims for many years, recovering millions in compensation. Pitman is a member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys and has been a certified Civil Trial Advocate by the National Board of Trial Advocacy.

There are no upfront fees for our services, and we do not get paid unless our clients get paid.

If you have questions, we have answers. Ph: 505-677-7777 .

Can I File a Claim?

If you are concerned that your loved one has been neglected or abused at a nursing home, it is important to speak to an experienced attorney as soon as possible. These cases have many layers, and you need to discuss the situation with an attorney who is well-versed in how to validate a nursing home negligence claim.

Our attorneys need to consider many factors to determine if there may be a case, such as:

  • Severity of your loved one’s injuries
  • How the injuries happened/what you know about what happened
  • Whether the nursing home has a history of abuse or neglect claims
  • Evidence you have obtained to help prove your claim
  • What happened when you told the nursing home about what happened to your loved one
  • If you have had problems with the facility in the past, such as with understaffing or being unable to find out what has been happening with your loved one
  • And more

An initial consultation with one of our experienced attorneys is free of charge and there is no obligation to hire our firm. If we think you have a valid case, we are prepared to pursue maximum compensation for your loved one’s damages.

Types of Nursing Home Abuse/Negligence Cases

Our Santa Fe nursing home abuse lawyers are prepared to take on cases involving many forms of mistreatment of nursing home residents. This includes:


This is a widespread problem at nursing homes in New Mexico and across the nation. This is often the result of understaffing. The entities that own nursing homes often care more about profits than providing the care residents need. One of the easiest ways to cut costs and preserve profits is to limit staff or have them work fewer hours.

Neglect can take many forms. For example, many residents need help getting out of bed, using the toilet, getting dressed or eating and drinking. When there aren’t enough staff members these residents’ needs can go unmet for a long time. Residents may get impatient and try to do things themselves, resulting in falls and other accidents that can cause serious injuries. Sometimes residents try to get out of bed or get out of a wheelchair on their own, with disastrous consequences.

Some residents spend much of their time in bed and cannot move on their own. They need to be moved at regular intervals to prevent pressure sores/bed sores from developing.

Loved ones of nursing home residents are often shocked at how residents have been neglected. For example, staff members often fail to help residents with personal hygiene. Their rooms may be a mess and may smell.

Physical Abuse

Sometimes staff members lash out at residents and inflict physical harm, such as by:

  • Slapping
  • Hitting
  • Punching
  • Shoving
  • Biting

Overworked staff members may restrain residents in such a way that it causes physical injury. For example, residents could be tied to a wheelchair or tied down to their bed. Staff members may overmedicate residents so they will be sedated, which is also a form of abuse.

Abuse can also include force feeding a resident or even denying them food or water as some sort of punishment.

Psychological Abuse

This is a form of abuse that is meant to cause psychological trauma for residents. For example, residents might get screamed at or threatened. Sometimes residents are harassed or intentionally ignored or isolated. This can cause residents to get depressed. They might refuse to eat and become socially withdrawn.

Sexual Abuse

Sometimes residents suffer sexual abuse, which refers to unwanted sexual activity, such as molestation or different sex acts. Staff members might photograph or videotape residents when they are naked or not fully clothed. These pictures might get posted to the internet or social media.

Has your loved one been abused or neglected? Call today: 505-677-7777 .

What are the Common Signs of Abuse or Neglect in a Nursing Home?

There are a variety of signs that your loved one may have suffered some form of abuse or neglect. Physical abuse is going to leave things like cuts and bruises. If your loved one cannot explain a bruise, broken bone or other type of injury, it may mean abuse has occurred?

Other signs of abuse or neglect to watch for include:

  • Bedsores, particularly ones that have progressed to the point where muscle and bone have been damaged
  • Unexplained falls
  • Residents being nervous around staff members
  • Residents withdrawing from social activities
  • Depression, anxiety or other mental health issues
  • Messy room with fall hazards or excessive amounts of trash
  • Dehydration
  • Poor nutrition
  • Fear of being left alone
  • Poor hygiene, particularly when the resident needs help with hygiene
  • Lack of staff at the facility when you visit your loved one

If you notice any signs of abuse, talk to your loved one and those who work at the facility to try to find out what is going on. If you have questions about legal options, call PKSD today to find out how we may be able to assist you.

What is a Nursing Home Abuse Case Worth?

If we validate your case and you decide to hire our firm, we are prepared to seek full compensation for your loved one’s damages. This includes all your loved one’s medical expenses, including bills for surgery, hospital stays, medical tests (X-rays, blood tests, MRIs, CT scans) and prescription medications. Other medical costs your loved one may incur include:

  • Physical therapy
  • Rehabilitation
  • Ambulance transportation
  • Follow-up visits with doctors and specialists

Our Santa Fe nursing home negligence attorneys understand the wide-ranging effects of abuse and neglect. We work to determine all the economic and non-economic damages suffered by victims. For example, victims may lose enjoyment of life. They may endure significant physical pain and emotional suffering.

These damages can be included in a claim for compensation. However, establishing the value of these damages is a complex task that is best left to an experienced lawyer. We know compensation cannot change what occurred. However, recovering compensation can be an important step as victims and their families look to move forward.

In the event the victim of abuse or neglect passes away, we are prepared to pursue wrongful death damages for the victim’s estate and surviving family members.

If the liable party’s actions were intentional or reckless, punitive damages may be available. These damages are not connected to damages suffered by the victim. Instead, these damages are meant to punish the liable parties for their actions and help deter others from engaging in similar conduct in the future.

Nursing Home Residents’ Rights

Abuse and neglect of nursing home residents is against federal and state laws that were passed to provide residents with a variety of rights. While these rights cover a wide range of issues, the general ideas are to ensure residents receive the quality care they need and live free from abuse. That way, residents can have a good quality of life and have strong physical, mental and social wellbeing.

Federally, these rights exist under the Nursing Home Reform Act of 1987. States like New Mexico have passed similar laws that grant the same rights to residents in their states as well (N.M. Code R. § Rights of Residents).

These are some of the rights your loved one has while in a nursing home. If any of these rights are infringed or violated and this causes injury to your loved one, there may be a nursing home neglect case. This includes the right to:

  • Live without mental or physical abuse
  • Not be chemically restrained unless authorized by a physician
  • Be treated with courtesy, dignity and respect by nursing home employees and all licensed, certified and registered providers contracted with the facility
  • Have physical and emotional privacy
  • Make complaints without retaliation
  • Have medical, physical and psychological needs accommodated
  • Have unrestricted and private communication with family
  • Manage their own finances
  • Be fully informed of the plan of care
  • Not be subject to discrimination
  • Be fully informed about the terms of admission to the facility, including fees
  • Have private conversations about health care matters

Call PKSD today. Free consultation: 505-677-7777 .

Liability for Nursing Home Abuse or Negligence

The staff member or medical professional who abused or neglected your loved one could be held liable for your loved one’s damages. Staff members include caregivers, nurses, doctors, staff members, administrators and others. The nursing home itself may also bear liability.

Sometimes multiple parties are held liable. For example, the abusive staff member may not have been qualified to work at the nursing home. He or she may have had a history of abuse or neglect of residents. Oftentimes abusive staff members move around from one facility to another, abusing and neglecting residents along the way.

The facility and those involved in hiring this staff member may be held liable because they should have done a more thorough background check. Sometimes the background check was done but an abusive staff member was hired anyway.

There are also times when a facility knows that a staff member is hurting or neglecting residents but does not fire the individual. Facilities and those who run them have a duty to protect residents and not firing someone who abuses or neglects residents could be seen as a failure to uphold that duty.

Nursing homes can also be held liable for failing to have adequate staff for the facility. There are minimum staffing requirements that facilities must abide by to help ensure the safety and well-being of all the residents in the nursing home. Sometimes facilities do not have enough registered nurses or caregivers on duty.

Validating a Nursing Home Abuse Case

In a nursing home case, as in other personal injury cases, it is up to the victim/plaintiff to prove liability. That means it is up to your attorney to gather evidence to prove what happened and establish the value of your damages.

Pictures of physical injuries are going to be vital for a claim about physical abuse. Your lawyer may also be able to obtain records from the facility about how often a resident was checked on.
Some residents need to be checked frequently because they cannot move on their own. If a resident is not moved regularly, he or she may develop pressure sores.

Your lawyer may also review records about how many nurses and staff members were on duty. This may help validate a claim for an injury caused by understaffing.

Filing a Nursing Home Abuse Complaint in New Mexico

Many people complain to the facility when they discover their loved one has been abused or neglected. However, the problems often go unresolved. It may even be difficult to find someone to complain to. If this happens, you may want to complain to state regulators.

You can contact Adult Protective Services with complaints about abuse or neglect at a long-term care facility. There are two different numbers to call:

  • 1-505-476-4912 for complaints about abuse perpetrated by employees or those under the supervision of the facility
  • 1-866-654-3219 for complaints about abuse perpetrated by those not under the supervision of the facility

Even if you file a complaint, you can still contact a lawyer to discuss potential legal options.

Contact PKSD Today to Discuss Legal Options

Your choice of an attorney is one of the most important decisions after a loved one suffered neglect or abuse at a nursing home. Nursing homes are going to fight hard to avoid accountability, so you need an experienced attorney fighting for your rights.

PKSD has been advocating for nursing home abuse victims for decades. We have extensive knowledge of the many details involved in these claims and how to build strong cases. We have the resources to thoroughly investigate what happened and pursue full compensation for damages.

We do not charge any upfront fees for our services. The initial legal consultation is also free.

Experienced Lawyers. Millions Recovered. Contact us today: 505-677-7777 .

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