Archive for August, 2022

What to Do If You Suspect Nursing Home Neglect

Millions of elderly people are neglected in long-term care facilities every year. In fact, according to the World Health Organization, nearly all older people experience nursing home neglect or abuse at some point. If you suspect your loved one has been neglected, you should act right away. Abuse tends to get worse over time and can even be fatal if it is not stopped.

What Is Nursing Home Neglect?

While more than 40% of nursing home residents report abuse, nearly 95% say they have experienced neglect. Nursing home neglect involves caregivers failing to uphold medical care guidelines and expected standards of care. They may fail to provide necessities like food and water to a patient, or they may simply ignore them.

Signs of nursing home neglect include:

These negligent actions are evidence that nursing home staff have breached their duty to your loved one and their family. This neglect can lead to illnesses and injuries that are fatal to your loved one.

Steps to Take If Your Loved One Experienced Nursing Home Neglect

senior women in a nursing home

If your loved one is being neglected at a long-term care facility in South Carolina, you should take the following steps:

  1. Call 911. If your loved one is in immediate or life-threatening danger, you need to contact the police right away. They can investigate the situation and help you document the neglect. 
  2. Call Adult Protective Services. The Long Term Care Ombudsman at the South Carolina Department of Social Services will help you determine what steps to take to protect your loved one. You can call them at 1-800-868-9095.
  3. Remove Your Loved One from the Nursing Home. If possible, you should help your loved one move to a safe location. This might include home-based care or a different care facility.
  4. Gather Evidence of the Neglect. If you have pictures of your loved one’s injuries or records that prove neglect, you should gather that information and provide it to the authorities during their investigation.
  5. Call a South Carolina Nursing Home Neglect Attorney. The nursing home will likely fight back against your allegations of neglect. You need someone by your side who will protect your rights and the health and safety of your loved one.

It’s important to report nursing home neglect and take action against it. If you file a complaint, it might prevent neglect from occurring to other residents in the future.

Do I Need a Lawyer for a Nursing Home Neglect Case?

While you are not required to get legal assistance to handle a nursing home neglect case, an attorney can relieve some of your stress by handling the legal issues.

A long term care ombudsman can help you file a neglect complaint against the nursing home, but they cannot help you with a nursing home neglect lawsuit. They do not provide legal advice in South Carolina. Only an attorney has the knowledge you need to file a lawsuit and hold the care facility accountable for their neglectful actions.

It is in your best interest to work with a nursing home neglect attorney. They will conduct an independent investigation and handle all communications with government agencies as well as the nursing home and their insurance company. These parties will use complex legal language that may be confusing. They may also discourage you from trying to get compensation to cover you and your loved one’s damages. A lawyer will be on your side, representing only your best interests.

Compensation in Nursing Home Neglect Cases

If your loved one was severely injured due to neglect they experienced in a nursing home, you may have significant damages. You can get compensation through a personal injury lawsuit or wrongful death claim.

You can get money to cover the following losses:

In some cases, you may also be able to get punitive damages. These damages do not compensate you for losses, but instead punish the at-fault party for wrongful actions.

When you call a nursing home neglect lawyer, you can ask about the value of your case. We know that money cannot make everything better, but it can help you cover costs that were incurred as a result of the negligence of the nursing home and their staff.

Call a South Carolina Nursing Home Neglect Lawyer for Help

Nursing home neglect cases can be complex. You must prove that the care facility and/or staff failed to take action that resulted in harm to your loved one. The nursing home will likely fight back against your allegations. With the help of a skilled nursing home neglect lawyer, you can protect your loved one as well as other residents in the long-term care facility.

Call attorney Ryan Montgomery today at (864) 207-4927 for a case consultation.

Upstate SC I-85 Construction Safety Tips to Avoid Auto Accidents

Construction on I-85 in Spartanburg and Cherokee counties promises a better highway system in Upstate South Carolina; however, in ongoing roadwork creates a risk of car accidents. Drivers on the highway need to be aware of frequent lane closures, narrow shoulders, and inconsistent construction signage. Read below to learn some construction safety tips that can help you avoid auto accidents in this area of the state.

What Is the I-85 Construction Project?

The South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT) is working with contractors to widen and rehabilitate Interstate 85 beginning at mile marker 77 and ending at the North Carolina state line. The roadwork involves a total of 29 miles of interstate in Spartanburg and Cherokee counties.

Between mile markers 77 and 80 in Spartanburg County, the construction team will widen and rehabilitate the existing highway. The current four-lane interstate will be widened to six lanes between mile markers 80 and 90 in Cherokee County and from mile marker 98 through the North Carolina state line. A travel lane will be added in both directions and several exits and exit ramps will be reconstructed. Additionally, two railroad bridge crossings will be replaced.

The goal of construction on I-85 is to reduce traffic congestion while improving safety for all drivers on the roadway. Widening the corridor will also boost the local economy by increasing the capacity of this section of the highway. These improvements to I-85 will allow this South Carolina interstate system to function more efficiently.

During the construction, SCDOT will use lane shifts to allow contractors to work on I-85 throughout the day. Barriers will be placed and traffic lanes going in one direction may be shifted to the other side of the highway. Northbound and Southbound traffic will each have two lanes for a period of time.  

Detailed information about the I-85 construction project and lane closures can be found on the SCDOT I-85 Widening Project website.

Work Zone Car Accident Statistics

Work zones are extremely dangerous because of constant changes and the presence of construction equipment and workers.

According to the National Work Zone Safety Information Clearinghouse, there were approximately 102,000 crashes in construction areas throughout the United States in 2020 (the most recent year for which data is available). Those car accidents led to more than 44,000 injuries and 857 fatalities. More than 150 construction workers were killed by auto crashes.

All of these accidents could have been avoided with better diligence from drivers and construction workers.

How to Avoid Car Accidents in Construction Zones

There are steps that drivers can take to avoid car accidents in work zones.

  1. Plan Ahead – Work zones typically have significant traffic congestion. You should expect delays and avoid these areas whenever possible.
  2. Obey Signs – SCDOT will place cones, barrels, barriers, and signs in work zones that help you drive safely. These indicators will direct you which lane to drive in, when to reduce your speed, and how to avoid workers.
  3. Slow Down – Speed limits in construction zones are typically lower to allow drivers time to process new traffic patterns and to protect workers. Keep a safe distance from cars ahead of you to avoid a crash if there is a sudden stop.
  4. Move Over – If you see construction vehicles or workers on the shoulder of the road, move as far to the left as possible. Give them space to avoid swerving into them or throwing debris from your tires.
  5. Avoid Distractions – Distracted driving can be especially dangerous in a work zone. You must be alert to notice new signs, adjusted speed limits, increased traffic, and unexpected construction vehicles and workers.
  6. Watch for Sudden Stops – Traffic congestion is common in work zones, so sudden stopping is often required. Leave plenty of space between yourself and the vehicle in front of you so that a sudden stop doesn’t catch you off guard.
  7. Be Aware of Large Vehicles – Construction supplies and equipment often drive on the roadway in work zones. They can interfere with traffic and may drive slowly.
  8. Ask Passengers for Help – You may be so focused on the traffic ahead that you miss important signage. Ask passengers in your vehicle to help watch out for signs and lane closures.
  9. Watch for Workers – Construction workers will be present in all South Carolina work zones. Avoid them by moving to the left when you see them on the shoulder of the road.
  10. Be Patient – If you must drive through work zones, you should remain calm and follow the rules of the road. Keep in mind that the I-85 construction will be done soon and will benefit the entire area.

Call a Car Accident Lawyer If You Need Help

If you are involved in a work zone accident, you should immediately call a car accident attorney who can protect your rights. Ryan Montgomery Law has helped countless victims like you get the compensation they need to move forward after a serious accident. You shouldn’t shoulder the burden alone. Call us today at (864) 207-4927 for a case consultation.