How Long Does A Nursing Home Lawsuit Take Introduction: Deciding whether to pursue a nursing home abuse lawsuit can be a challenging decision, especially if you’re unfamiliar with the legal process. To help you navigate this complex journey, it’s essential to understand the timeline involved. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk you through the stages of a nursing home lawsuit, shedding light on why these cases can take time.
Stage 1: Initial Case Assessment
- A nursing home lawsuit commences with an initial case evaluation, akin to preparing for a marathon.
- During a free phone consultation, our intake specialists at Gregory Spektor and Associates gather information about your injury and its circumstances.
- Our nursing home attorneys evaluate this information to determine whether to accept your case.
Stage 2: Engaging the Client
- Upon accepting your case, we’ll contact you to discuss representation and provide engagement materials.
- You’ll receive detailed explanations of the legal process and have the opportunity to ask questions.
Stage 3: Investigating Your Claim
- Once engaged, we initiate a thorough investigation into your claim to determine if medical errors constitute malpractice or negligence.
- This stage involves collecting various records, such as facility and medical records, as well as records from you and billing documents.
- An initial consulting professional, often a respected medical expert, reviews these records to assess liability.
Stage 4: Notice of Claim
- If liability is established, we send a Notice of Claim (NOC) to all potential defendants, a legal requirement that precedes filing a lawsuit.
- Defendants must receive the NOC at least 60 days before a lawsuit is filed.
Stage 5: Filing the Nursing Home Lawsuit
- After distributing the NOC, we proceed to file the lawsuit, whether in arbitration or court.
- The defendant is served with a citation, and they must respond within approximately one month.
Stage 6: Expert Report (Chapter 74)
- Following the defendant’s response, we serve an expert report on all defendants.
- This report, a highly technical document, outlines the standard of care, how it was breached, and the resulting injuries.
- Defendants may object to the report, sometimes necessitating court hearings.
Stage 7: Discovery
- The discovery process begins after the expert report, involving the exchange of evidence and written questions (interrogatories).
- Depositions, where witnesses are questioned under oath, also occur during this phase.
- Parties can obtain depositions, reports, and documents from opposing experts.
Stage 8: Mediation and Settlement Negotiation
- The majority of nursing home lawsuits are resolved through mediation or settlement negotiations to avoid the cost and uncertainty of trial.
- Settlement negotiations can begin at any point during the lawsuit and typically result in fair compensation.
- Negotiations may take weeks or months, depending on various factors.
Stage 9: Trial
- If negotiations and mediation fail, the lawsuit proceeds to trial.
- Parties present their cases to a judge and jury, with the length varying based on complexity.
- The jury’s verdict is reached after deliberations, and the judge signs the judgment.
Stage 10: Final Recovery
- Following trial or a settlement agreement, final recovery is achieved.
- Parties agree on a confidential statement, and a portion of the payment covers expenses, liens, and medical bills.
- In cases involving wrongful death, probate court approval may be necessary.
Factors Affecting the Timeline
- Several factors can influence the timeline, including expert availability, statute of limitations, the discovery process, and the disbursement process.
- Expert availability can impact the speed of case progression, particularly in finding the right expert.
- Short statute of limitations may lead to early filing.
- The complexity of discovery, number of defendants, and responsiveness can extend the timeline.
- Negotiating liens or bills can affect the disbursement process.
- Each nursing home lawsuit is unique, and the timeline varies accordingly.
- At Gregory Spektor and Associates, our experienced attorneys are committed to achieving the best possible outcome for your case.
- We have the knowledge and expertise to handle nursing home cases, ensuring fair and maximum compensation for injuries. Reach us in Queens, NY, or call 888-797-7755 for legal advice.