Group Home Abuse Lawyers
Group homes (adult foster care or personal care homes) are an alternative to larger assisted care facilities for older adults or people with developmental disabilities. The concept of these nursing homes seems noble, offering a more "home-like" atmosphere with fewer residents.
Unfortunately, these smaller versions of long-term care facilities can be run by individuals that are more concerned with the profits they can make than providing the care that they need.
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC represents people who have been abused and neglected in a transitional home setting. If your loved one has suffered a serious injury or wrongful death, contact our Illinois group home neglect lawyers for a free case review of the circumstances involving the harm.
Our nursing home abuse attorneys are fully committed to holding Adult Residential Facility operators and management companies accountable when a disabled person is injured at their facility. Contact our Chicago law firm for a free case review of your legal rights for a civil claim under Illinois law.
Illinois Group Home Regulation
Group homes provide a residential living environment for a small group of people with similar issues. These homes could house elderly persons, those with developmental disabilities, individuals with chemical dependency issues, or anyone that needs support for daily living.
These homes are not medical facilities but have staff available to help residents with their daily living needs, such as meals and personal hygiene.
One issue with adult residential facilities for the elderly or disabled is the limited regulation that these smaller homes receive. Although they must be licensed by the Illinois Department of Public Health and should adhere to similar rules as large commercial long-term care facilities, these homes may only have a few residents, making them less likely to get the same amount of scrutiny.
In a small residential transitional home, there may only be one or two people working at the home, making it easy for abuse to happen and not get reported.
Group Home Abuse FAQs
How do You Report Neglect in a Group Home?
You can report every incident, accident, or injury occurring in any license health facility, including group homes, to the Illinois Department of Public Health at (800) 252-4343 or (800) 226-0768, 24/7. Also, you can notify law enforcement, Police Department, and local long-term care home ombudsman.
Who Regulates Group Homes?
The Illinois Department of Human Services (800) 843-6154 regulates group homes under the Department of Children and Family Services. All group homes must be licensed by the state and staff with employees who have passed the required qualifications and training.
How do Group Homes Work?
The nursing staff at group homes provide residents prescribed therapies and twenty-four hours of supervision, and a home-like atmosphere. Typically, group homes have ten or fewer residents, unlike big corporate facilities that provide services to hundreds of patients.
Are Group Homes Safe for Adults With Disabilities?
Adults with disabilities often require specialized care, preferably provided in an atmosphere that is emotionally, mentally, and physically safe. The ideal location will have adequately trained staff, follow safety procedures, provide ongoing medical care, supervise activities, offer healthy meals, and provide inclusion for family involvement.
When selecting the ideal location, consider all of the amenities above, and ensure that safety remains the top priority. Visit the facility unannounced during odd hours of the day and watched the staff, employees, other residents, and visitors while spending time with your loved one.
What is a Children's Group Home?
While many children enter the family foster program, others are placed in alternative settings like children group homes that typically house up to a dozen children. These homes provide their young residents access to community resources, including education, health care, recreational opportunities, and sometimes jobs.
Abuse of Disabled People in Group Home Environments
Some small adult residential facilities are owned or staffed with workers who are abusive toward their residents. These employees can use their power and position to commit atrocities against those they are paid to provide care.
In these cases, the residents feel powerless to safeguard themselves from their abusers and seek help from authorities for protection. Some of the types of nursing home neglect and abuse that may happen at the facility include:
- Physical abuse - Residents of Adult Residential Facilities may be subjected to physical abuse such as being struck, restrained, or even cut or burned.
- Emotional abuse - The staff can be verbally abusive and controlling, causing emotional abuse and pain. Nursing home residents can become withdrawn and depressed due to the poor treatment they endure.
- Malnourishment and Dehydration - The staff may fail to adequately nourish and hydrating the resident, leading to serious health issues, including kidney issues and organ problems.
- Home neglect - The nursing home staff could fail to provide any service or medical care necessary for the patient to maintain a quality of life or medical health. The group home doctor could harm the patient through medical malpractice. The nurses administering drugs might harm the resident through medication errors.
- Sexual assault - Sexual predators are drawn to working at nursing home facilities like transitional homes where victims are easily accessible with little supervision and are vulnerable due to age or mental disability. The working staff, visitors, or other residents would sexually abuse the victim.
- Financial abuse - Residents living in assisted living facilities could become victims of financial abuse by their health care providers. Caregivers have been accused of stealing checks, credit cards, and even the resident's identity.
The Nursing Home Care Act protects residents against home abuse and neglect. Unfortunately, not all staff members follow federal and state laws, resulting in severe personal injury and wrongful death.
Many cases of abuse in Illinois nursing homes go unreported, where the victim lives in fear of retaliation or cannot speak up to protect themselves. Elder abuse violates the patient's civil rights to live without mistreatment.
Stopping Group Home Abuse in Illinois
It is up to family members and friends to protect their loved ones in group homes from abuse by watching for signs and proactively visiting residents of these homes.
Relying on government officials to catch these abusers is unrealistic as some group homes are run without the proper licensing and fall under the radar or, even if licensed, are rarely inspected. Family members should be aware of any physical signs of abuse, changes in behavior, or suspicious circumstances surrounding financial accounts.
Group home abuse, like all caregiver abuse, can be devastating to both the victim and their families. Abusers deserve not only to be punished but also should be held liable for the damage they cause to their victims, financially, emotionally, and physically.
Sample Illinois Group Home Abuse Lawsuits & Settlements
$400,000 Illinois Settlement; Adult Residential Facility Abuse Lawsuit
A middle-aged man moved into the adult residential facility for assistance with brain injuries and paralysis acquired at birth. He needed around-the-clock care and support.
The working staff's substandard care led to his developed bedsores (pressure sores, pressure wounds, decubitus ulcers) at six areas on his body. After the pressure sores had become infected, the resident underwent surgical procedures to prevent bedsores from degrading into a life-threatening condition.
The staff discharged the resident from the facility to return home to live with it is family. Upon his return, the family sought out legal advice and brought legal action against the group home on the victim's behalf.
The plaintiffs allege that the Illinois group Home was negligent in providing care of the man and should be held responsible for the damages that resulted. These harms included his injuries, scarring, medical expenses, and future suffering.
The plaintiffs accepted the owners of the group home negotiated offer of $400,000 in an out of court settlement to resolve the case.
Not Yet Resolved - Lawsuit Alleges Abuse and Malpractice at Illinois Group Home
A female victim residing in a central Illinois group Home suffered from multiple physical and mental problems, requiring the support and care of professionals. Court documents filed by the victim's attorney argues that a group home staff member sexually molested and abused the woman.
The lawsuit states that the woman acquired a sexually transmitted disease from the horrific event. Reports differ on the frequency of occurrences of the alleged abuse.
Additionally, the lawsuit claims that the facility also injured the victim through medical malpractice, stating that the facility staff negligently placed a feeding tube down her throat. That error led to significant injury and hospital bills.
This case is not yet been settled through a negotiated agreement or litigated at trial. The woman's attorneys are seeking compensation for physical injury, emotional trauma, medical expenses, and other damages.
Not Yet Resolved - Case Filed in Illinois after Man Kills Roommate in Adult Residential Group Home
The thirty-year-old was residing in a facility near Chicago, Illinois receiving care for his mental disabilities acquired at birth. He and his group home roommate (who weighed twice as much as he did) got into an altercation.
Reports are unclear as to how the confrontation started or if the smaller victim was even able to fight back at all. He passed away almost one week after the incident from injuries sustained during the skirmish. Medical officials listed his cause of death as compressional asphyxia.
After a police investigation, officials listed the victim's death as a homicide. Attorneys on his behalf filed a lawsuit seeking compensation through the civil court that is yet to be resolved. The complaint seeks damages for negligence and wrongful death.
The plaintiffs' lawyers state facility staff and administration failed in their duty to provide a safe environment for the resident.
Get Legal Help From Illinois Group Home Abuse Attorneys Headquartered in Chicago
Operators of Illinois group homes have a legal responsibility to keep their residents safe and free from abuse and injury. When episodes of mistreatment occur, Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC stands ready to prosecute these cases on behalf of minors, disabled, and other vulnerable people.
Call our nursing home negligence attorneys now at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone call) or use the contact form to schedule a free consultation. All our discussions will remain confidential through an attorney-client relationship.
Please don't reveal sensitive information in a voicemail, text message, contact form. Your Chicago nursing home abuse lawyer will review your case, provide immediate legal advice, and discuss options on how to resolve your nursing home abuse case.
We currently represent clients throughout the United States, Illinois, and in the following localities: Cook County, DuPage County, Kane County, Lake County, Will County, Winnebago County, Peoria County, Chicago, Arlington Heights, Aurora, Elgin, Naperville, Orland Park, Schaumburg, and Springfield.
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