Damages involved in Tampa nursing home abuse cases can include concrete evidence such as medical bills and insurance liens, or emotional distress with pain and suffering that an individual had to go through as a result of the injury. Also, in certain circumstances, there are punitive damages that can be assessed in nursing home negligence cases. If you are facing these damages, it is highly advisable to contact an experienced nursing home attorney who can build a strong claim to receive the compensation you deserve. 

Determining Punitive Damages

There is a jury instruction about punitive damages that sets forth, what the juries must consider, and that the court normally will either reduce the amount of punitive damages. They feel that it is too burdensome on the defendant or in some instances, they can even expand them but that is very rare.

Recoverable Damages

An individual can receive both compensatory and economic damages for medical bills, property damage, theft, or other similar situations. A person may also be awarded non-economic damages, which include pain and suffering, emotional distress, and, in some cases, punitive damages.

One unique factor in nursing home abuse cases is the age of the client. Sometimes the damages can be limited because the resident has a documented medical condition that states they will only live for a short while longer. Additionally, some of the damages could be diminished because of the mental incapacity of these residents to comprehend the emotional stress they were put through. Because clients who have mental disabilities do not fully understand that they have been abused or neglected, it is difficult to recover for these damages.

Non-Economic Damages

Economic damages are money damages such as the past and future medical bills, lost ability to earn, and lost earnings, out of pocket costs. The non-economics are intangible things such as pain and suffering or what are called derivative claims such as loss of consortium or alienation or loss of affection, and things like that. Non-economic damages are the ones that really matter to the patient. Pain and suffering are the personal side of the damages caused by a nursing home.

A non-economic cap means that the statute limits a plaintiff’s ability to recover in a particular case.There are various types of caps on damages ranging from $250,000 and up for certain types of plaintiffs bringing certain types of claims against certain types of defendants. This is a to be had with a particular lawyer for a particular issue to determine what caps, if any, are applicable in an individual’s part.

Punitive Damages

Punitive damages in Tampa nursing home abuse cases are designed to punish a defendant for wrongdoing. Punitive damages are rare and very difficult, and when people think of lawsuits, they often think of punitive damages although punitive damages are one of the most difficult types of damages to even get the ability to argue. If you are seeking damages for nursing home abuse in Tampa, a compassionate nursing home abuse attorney can help you file a claim. A Tampa nursing home abuse lawyer can help you assess the best case based on the facts of the incident.

Punitive damages are awarded when a plaintiff can prove that a defendant acted with reckless disregard of the possibility of injury or death of a particular patient. Punitive damages have to be authorized by courts and the person has a burden to prove to be able to assert those damages and based on the person’s presentation of court, the court may allow the person to bring them to raise the bar for liability because it allows the plaintiff to recover not only for the damages of their own but also to recover in order to punish the nursing home for its activity.

The jury calculates the punitive damages, and they are calculated by providing a calculation that is set forth the jury instructions to the jury in order to allow them to determine what it is an appropriate amount of money that will sufficiently punish the defendant for the activity.

Proving a Claim

Evidence of emotional distress or physical pain that affects a person’s daily activities must be in place to prove damages. A person can verify medical damages by providing medical bills or insurance liens, and emotional distress through testimony by a psychologist or psychiatrist. Any other kind of evidence that can establish the exact amount of damages is also beneficial to support the case. 

At the request of the client or judge, the trial can be bifurcated, meaning the individual will first prove liability. Upon winning the liability case, the individual can then prove damages. Normally, liability and damages are argued at the same time throughout the trial, which can sometimes help to prove emotional distress.

Life Care Plan

Doctors can develop life care plans for the resident, which specifies what will be needed medically for the injuries sustained as a result of nursing home negligence or abuse. The resident’s attorney can then establish exactly what the resident’s cost of care will be for the rest of his or her life in order to provide a standard of comfort and reasonable care.  

For example, if the resident’s injury requires that he or she uses a wheelchair, bathroom assistance, a feeding tube, or a ventilator, these are things that can be incorporated in the damages. There is always a cost associated with these types of medical care, and a life care plan can delineate exactly what those expenses are going to be, and for how long the resident will need to pay them.

Hiring a Lawyer

Tampa injury lawyers will handle punitive damages case by gathering the appropriate evidence to be able to show that a particular defendant should be liable for punitive damages and that the court should open the plaintiff to the opportunity to argue those damages.

They should hire an attorney because it depends if a person’s claim includes economic or non-economic damages if the person brings a claim against a nursing home, the person is still obligated to meet all of the statutory pre-suit and suit requirements, and if the person is not experienced in this area of law, missing on thing could mean that the person is barred from recovery. If a person has economic damages capped against a particular provider to join another provider that might not be capped and split that the liability that way.

Punitive damages require very specific proof and assertions in order to even have the right to raise them. Unless the person is skilled in the ability to raise punitive damages, the person doesn’t automatically get them.

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