In the state of Florida, nursing home cases have an obligatory pre-suit period pursuant to the statute that controls nursing home facilities. The statute says that a person is obligated to provide a specific statutory notice by certified mail. When that happens, the facility normally has 75 days, to respond with an evaluation and a review of the claim someone brought. At the end of the 75 days, the claim is either accepted or rejected.
In that time period, the lawyers gather unsworn statements which are similar to depositions, but nobody is sworn. They are designed for fact-finding to help both sides evaluate the strength of their case. In addition, the lawyers retrieve medical records which are sent back and forth. The nursing home abuse lawyer also provides an economic breakdown of costs and damages to the other side so they recognize what the value of the claim is that the person can prove.
All that culminates into a pre-suit mediation where the case is settled or is not settled. When someone is unsuccessful in settling their claim at a pursuit mediation, they have the right to go to arbitration or go to trial to file their lawsuit depending on the contracts of a particular facility. Normally, the parties involved in this process are the attorney for the plaintiff and the attorney and the adjuster for the facility.
Preparing for Trial
A person who brings a nursing home abuse claim must prepare as diligently as possible to have the best chance of resolving their claim sooner rather than later for the biggest amount of value. That includes seeking the assistance of a qualified attorney quickly. That means following up with the attorney and providing documents and statements when necessary. That includes being available to the lawyer for consultation. The more available a person is in the process, the better their claim will move forward.
In the time leading up to a nursing home abuse trial, people should avoid talking about their case. They should avoid posting things on social media. They should avoid harassing or being offensive to the facility. The least amount of publicity assists in a better settlement.
Impact of the Length of a Pre-Trial Period
Short pretrial periods of someone’s nursing home abuse case in Clearwater force both parties to get working on their case. However, the problem with the short pre-suit period is that the records, interviews, and the economic experts may not align quickly because they all have their own schedules. In that case, the person may be a little bit unprepared to fully settle their claim in a short pre-suit period in their Clearwater nursing home abuse case.
The benefits of a long pretrial period is that it gives the lawyer time to collect documents, review information, get the experts lined up, and have those interviews and unsworn statements of the facility staff. It can get out of control because as time progresses, people’s memories become worse. There is also the risk of losing the claim because of somebody’s unforeseen death.
Role of an Attorney
A skilled Clearwater lawyer brings the appropriate statutory notices to protect the client’s interests and is in a position to reach out and identify witnesses, key employees, medical records, medical providers, and expert witnesses in a short amount of time. In doing so, the lawyer cuts down the amount of time necessary to bring a claim to fruition.
During that pretrial period retrial of their nursing home abuse case in Clearwater, the lawyer is collecting medical records, identifying economic damages, and requesting unsworn statements of the injured person, their family members, and the other side including facility management, individual nurses, and nursing home staff.