If your loved one is a victim of nursing home neglect, it is time to pursue legal action. They deserve a settlement from the facility that has failed them. The good news is there are lawyers who specialize in this kind of case. Nursing home neglect lawyers are personal injury attorneys well-versed in elder abuse laws at the federal and local levels. With this kind of expert assistance, your family may be able to settle out of court quickly and receive an award payment. To review the laws that cover elder abuse in your state, visit the National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA).
This association provides a directory summarizing each state’s laws and agencies dealing with elder abuse, as well as a frequently asked questions page. According to NCEA research, as many as two million elders — 1 out of 10 — suffer abuse in the United States each year. You are not alone. It is time to seek help from an experienced nursing home neglect lawyer.
But What About the Cost?
The question you may be asking yourself at this point, of course, is how much nursing home neglect lawyers will charge your family. You may feel you cannot pay hundreds of dollars per hour. That is okay. If your resources are limited, you can still afford an attorney. Why? Because nursing home neglect lawyers are contingency fee attorneys that only charge a percentage of the final award amount. This means that if they don’t win your case, you owe nothing.
There is no upfront fee at all. Instead, the lawyer receives a portion of your settlement. In addition, nursing home neglect lawyers typically offer free, no-obligation consultations to help you decide whether to move forward.
Contingency fees range from 20% to 50% of the final settlement amount. That said, a more typical range is between 25% and 40%. Depending on your state, local laws may cap the percentage a lawyer can collect from clients. If you are curious about the laws in your state, your local bar association website may have the information you seek about fee caps.
This type of fee arrangement is something your lawyer should explain in writing. Your family will sign a formal document agreeing to this fee percentage. Contingency lawyers make it possible for more people to access legal services when and if they need them. They also give lawyers an incentive to win their cases. The risk of losing a case is all on the lawyer, not on the family bringing forth a case.
Most nursing home neglect lawyers will also require their clients to pay for incidental items such as postage, filing fees, and messenger services. These items may be billed to you as they occur, but it is more common for them to be paid out of the final settlement amount. Ask the attorney about how they bill for incidental items during your first consultation.
Your family may have to pay these costs even if you lose your case, unless your contract specifically says that you do not owe these types of costs if you lose the case. Read your attorneys fee agreement very carefully. Ask questions if you don’t understand anything.
Can I Pay Nursing Home Neglect Lawyers a Lower Amount?
The answer to this question is maybe. If your lawyer gets the facility to settle out of court quickly, you’ll usually pay a lower amount closer to 25% of the settlement. If your case goes to trial or appeal, it is common for you to pay a higher amount such as 40% or 50% of the settlement. Make sure you understand all the possible levels of the fee agreement before signing it.
A contingency fee arrangement is good for your family, which may not have thousands of dollars available to pay an attorney on an hourly basis. You deserve expert help to prepare a winning case and receive a settlement payment as quickly as possible. A lawsuit is also a good way to ensure your loved one’s nursing home improves its operation. Others should not have to suffer in the future. Take action today.
Ready to see if you may qualify? Complete your free online nursing home neglect case evaluation now!
Laura Schaefer is the author of The Teashop Girls, The Secret Ingredient, and Littler Women: A Modern Retelling. She is also an active co-author or ghostwriter of several nonfiction books on personal and business development. Laura currently lives in Windermere, Florida with her husband and daughter and works with clients all over the world. Visit her online at lauraschaeferwriter.com and linkedin.com.