If you have decided to file a civil suit against a nursing home in an effort to hold them accountable for the abuse of a loved one, it is important to get in touch with a compassionate attorney who has experience in dealing with abusive nursing homes. A lawyer can work with your in preparation for nursing home abuse trials in Palm Beach Gardens by examining any evidence collected, interviewing witnesses, and calculating damages.
Length of Time it Takes for a Nursing Home Abuse Trial
Due to the elderly age of most plaintiff’s, nursing home abuse trials typically take less than a year. These cases tend to move quickly due to the fact that the plaintiff is residing in a facility for short-term rehab. If the case is not moving fast enough, the plaintiff can petition the court for an expedited trial date. The courts recognize that if a plaintiff is of elderly age, the case should proceed fairly quickly and will do what they can to ensure a fair trial without taking up too much time.
Influencing Factors in a Nursing Home Abuse Case in Palm Beach Gardens
There are some factors that can influence a trial depending on the age to the plaintiff and how frail they are. If there is a 60-year-old plaintiff who is residing in a nursing home for rehabilitative purposes, there may not be a need to expedite the case. Attorneys may then be able to get an accurate gauge of how many injuries the victim sustained from the abuse, and how much the damages cost. However, if a victim is declining in health, an attorney can petition the court for an expedited trial date.
Challenges of Having Multiple Plaintiffs and Defendants
One of the challenges that come with multiple plaintiffs and defendants is coordinating with all parties involved. When there is only one defendant, it is easier to get a case to trial much more quickly because there is less discovery that needs to be done. The more parties present in a lawsuit, the more difficult it is to find a trial date that works for everyone. This can make a trial last much longer in comparison to a trial with only a single plaintiff.
Process of a Nursing Home Abuse Trial
The process of a nursing home abuse trial is similar to any other types of injury claims. By and large, the plaintiff which is the person who files the lawsuit and the injured party or their family members will have the burden of proof, which means they have to prove that the facility or the doctors or the nurses fell beneath the standard of care. The plaintiff will go first from jury selection to opening statements to putting on witnesses.
The defense will then have their opportunity to rebut what the plaintiff said. That carries on all the way through the trial through closing argument. The plaintiff will go first, the defense will then do their closing, and then the plaintiff gets the last word with a rebuttal.
What are some important elements in these trials that good litigators keep an eye on?
Important elements in these trials are being familiar with the rules of evidence and making sure that if the defense puts in anything that is inappropriate, the lawyer objects. Then they have to preserve the record so that if the jury rules in favor of the home or the facility or any defendant, if something improper has happened, they can then appeal that to the appellate level.
Jury Selection Process in a Nursing Home Abuse Case
The first step of the jury selection process involves a judge asking jurors a basic set of questions in an effort to see if they are capable of being a juror without any bias. The plaintiff will then introduce themselves after the judge has finished their questions. The plaintiff’s legal team may also begin to ask the potential jurors bias-revealing questions. These questions are asked because it is a fundamental right to have a trial with a fair and impartial jury.
Once the plaintiff does their part in jury selection, the defense then gets an opportunity to ask questions and try to get jurors who are not good for the defense. Once the plaintiff and the defense have finished asking questions, then the case goes in front of a judge.
Benefits of Hiring a Palm Beach Gardens Nursing Home Attorney
When preparing for nursing home abuse trials in Palm Beach Gardens, it is recommended to work with an attorney because they have the legal experience in building effective injury claims. An attorney can act on your behalf during trial in an effort to ensure that you are properly represented in court. An attorney can also help with the calculation of damages as well as negotiate with the defendant should it be necessary.