Perpetrators Can Be Held Criminally and Civilly Liable for Assault on the Elderly in New Jersey

Our lawyer-doctor defends the rights of people with disabilities and seniors

Assaults in nursing homes can occur at the hands of staff members, other residents or visitors to the facility. Assaults may be physical, emotional or sexual in nature. Regardless of the perpetrator or the specifics of the crime, the nursing home is responsible for failing to protect its residents from harm.

Seigel Law was founded in 1976 with the mission of helping injury victims in Ridgewood, Hackensack, Fair Lawn, Teaneck, Garfield, Fort Lee, Newark, Jersey City, Paterson, Elizabeth and Clifton. Our first priority is to ensure that your loved one is safe. We then take decisive steps to obtain compensation for the nursing home injuries your family member so cruelly sustained.

New Jersey criminal laws governing elder abuse

New Jersey’s criminal codes recognize the vulnerability of seniors to abuse and apply special criminal sanctions. A nurse, doctor, administrator or other member of the nursing home staff may be charged with endangering the welfare of the elderly or disabled if:

  • The person has a legal duty to care for an individual who is age 60 or older or is emotionally, psychologically or physically disabled.
  • The caretaker unreasonably neglects to perform tasks necessary for the physical or mental health of the elderly or disabled person.

In addition, nursing home personnel are required to report abuse of people classified as elderly or disabled to the New Jersey commissioner of the Department of Human Services or to Adult Protective Services.

Why seniors and people with disabilities are at risk of abuse

Some seniors and people with disabilities are susceptible to abuse and exploitation for several reasons, including:

  • Medical conditions that affect physical and mental capacities
  • Frailty and natural loss of physical strength
  • Loss of cognitive ability and memory
  • Limited communication
  • Loneliness and depression
  • Isolation from loved ones
  • Lack of social services

Recognizing abusive behavior of nursing home residents

Nursing homes get away with abuse because residents often cannot or will not speak up out of fear, embarrassment or the physical inability to do so. Be your loved one’s eyes and ears and let us be the voice to put an end to the abuse.

Some signs that an assault occurred include:

  • Broken bones
  • Lacerations
  • Bruises
  • Withdrawal, depression or anxiety
  • Cowering when a staff member or another resident comes near
  • Loss of property

Take action to protect your family member from abuse

Seigel Law is dedicated to protecting elderly and disabled patients’ rights in northern New Jersey. Call our medical malpractice law firm at 201.444.4000 or contact us online to schedule your free initial consultation with a lawyer-doctor at our Ridgewood office, in your home or at the long-term care facility. Through our contingency arrangement, you are not responsible for paying lawyer fees unless we recover damages for your loved one.