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November 1st, 2013

Nursing Home Liability When a Resident Beats/Assaults Another Resident

Nursing home abuse and assault issues are very common. In many situations, families blindly trust nursing homes to provide care for elderly family members. In some cases, that trust is misplaced, and the nursing home fails to provide adequate care, leading to an assault or abuse. The perpetrators can be employees of the nursing home or other residents.

Not every situation of nursing home assaults of residents will result in liability of the nursing home. Rather, the key factor is foreseeability – could the nursing home have foreseen and therefore prevented the assault/abuse? This is the single most important issue in a nursing home assault/abuse liability case.

NY Nursing Home Resident Killed, Alleged Perpetrator was a Roommate

Earlier this week, a Queens, NY nursing home resident was beaten and killed by a fellow resident, his roommate. According to NYDailyNews.com article, Queens nursing home resident beat roommate to death over curtain between beds: cops, a 71 year old nursing home resident was beaten to death with a wheel chair leg rest. The article describes two key issues: 1. prior fights between the two residents at issue and 2. the alleged assaulting resident may have had a prior criminal history.

Nursing Home Resident Attacks – Nursing Home Liable for Failing to Separate Residents?

Nursing homes may be held liable when a resident attacks another when there is evidence that the two residents did not get along. In this recent case, at least one witness indicated that the two residents had a history of fighting. If this is true, then there is an argument that the nursing home failed to act reasonably under the circumstances in separating the two residents. Instead, the nursing home continued to room them together. Essentially, the argument is that had the nursing home separated the two residents, the victim would still be alive.

Nursing Home Resident Attacks – Nursing Home Liable if it had Knowledge of the Resident’s Prior Criminal History?

In this recent nursing home attack case, the alleged perpetrator had a prior criminal history. However, according to the article, it remains unclear what the extent of that prior criminal history is. If the resident who committed the assault had a prior record for an assault type crime, or repeated criminal behavior (i.e., thefts, robberies, etc.), there may be a plausible argument that the nursing home failed to conduct proper assessments and background checks of its residents before accepting them. In addition, if the nursing home administrators had knowledge of the prior criminal history, there would be a strong argument for liability. The argument would be that the nursing home failed to do the following:

  • failed to warn the other residents,
  • failed to protect the other residents, and
  • failed to properly monitor the resident at issue.

Related articles:

Nursing Home & Elderly Care Abuse Lawyers

Call for a FREE CONSULTATION with a Former Prosecutor Click To Call

Firm founder, Guy D’Andrea, is a former prosecutor with care and compassion for victims of nursing home abuse. He represents victims of abuse/assault against those responsible for the abuse, such as the criminal perpetrator and others who allowed the abuse to continue or failed to stop the abuse.

To submit your case for review by our Pennsylvania and New Jersey crime victims lawyers, call Click To Call. Our lawyers are available for a free, no obligation legal consultation, and can obtain special admission in other states, such as New York or Delaware, on a case by case basis.

**This website does not provide legal advice. Every case is unique and it is crucial to get a qualified, expert legal opinion prior to making any decisions about your case. See the full disclaimer at the bottom of this page.