How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask ScottyMacEsq Your Own Question
ScottyMacEsq
ScottyMacEsq, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 15743
Experience:  Licensed Texas General Practice Attorney
19487448
Type Your Legal Question Here...
ScottyMacEsq is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My dad was injured from a fall and subsq Improper immed care

Customer Question

Hi
My dad was injured from a fall and subsq
Improper immed care at a nursing home facility.
He did not die, but suffered a serious head injury.
My mother is suing this facility,
and i would like to do same.
It will/would be helpful to know the legal term or definition of my plan to hold the bastards accountable for the total lack of responsibility and poor decision making after his fall,
Is this possible for me, the adult son?
What is the legal terminology?
Thanks
Mark in Boise
Submitted: 1 month ago.
Category: Legal
Customer: replied 1 month ago.
My father has passed away
His head injury was a factor
But not cause of death-
This all occured late this past summer
In mpls., mn
Expert:  ScottyMacEsq replied 1 month ago.

Thank you for using JustAnswer.

I'm sorry to hear about your situation, and my condolences on your loss. Can you tell me what state the facility is located in? And you said that your mother is suing the facility. Has she already filed a lawsuit, or is it in the preparation phase of such a lawsuit?

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
Minn
Mpls area
She is proceeding with that
As all his med records are being reviewed
Pls answer my question
Perhaps what state is important?
Varied law in a neglect/abuse event(s)
At these types of facilities?
Expert:  ScottyMacEsq replied 1 month ago.

You asked what the legal terminology is for, I assume, a case that you could successfully bring against this nursing home facility. The reason that I was asking those questions is that each state has different "causes of action" (a cause of action is a set of elements that, if proven, entitle the plaintiff to damages). So one state might have a certain cause of action, while another one doesn't. Also there is the issue of "standing", meaning that you can only sue for your own damages and those that you "own". For example, suppose you were part of a car accident. Someone hit the car behind you, which caused that car to hit yours. The car behind you suffered extensive damage and someone died. Your car suffered minor damage and no physical injury. While the person being sued could be sued for wrongful death, the party that would bring that suit would be the car behind you, not you (as you didn't "suffer" the wrongful death). "Standing" is where you have to show that you have some "injury in fact" from the behavior.

So it's clear that your father would have had standing, and thus your father's estate gets that same standing. Your mother has some sort of standing for loss of consortium (affection), in that she no longer has your father around. If she's the executor, she can bring the case on behalf of your father (the father's estate "inherits" his case, remember). And the beneficiaries of the estate share in the money recovered in such a lawsuit.

All of this is to point out that for YOU personally to have a case for how your father was treated, you have to show how you have been harmed due to their treatment of your father. Again, it's the harm to you that you'd be suing them for, not the harm to your father. Only the executor or administrator of the estate could bring the case complaining about your father's injuries. Your mother could sue for how she was harmed due to their actions and inactions. And you could sue for how you were harmed. Basically since you can only sue for your harm, and it doesn't appear that you're saying that they did anything TO you or directly took action against you to harm you, but only through their actions or inactions towards your father, your case would be called "loss of parental consortium".

Again, the state where this occurred is important, as between 17-20 states recognize a cause of action for parental consortium. And that means that between 30 and 33 states do NOT recognize that cause of action. Minnesota is one of the majority of states that does not recognize that cause of action:

Lefto v. Hoggsbreath Enterprises, Inc., 567 N.W.2d 746 (Minn. App. 1997), aff’d, 581 N.W.2d 855 (Minn. 1998)
(‘‘[w]e conclude . . . that . . . a new cause of action on behalf of a child for the loss of parental consortium should not be recognized’’)

Salin v. Kloempken, 322 N.W.2d 736 (Minn. 1982)
"...a new cause of action on behalf of a child for the loss of parental consortium should not be recognized."

These cases basically say that you can't sue for the damages to the relationship between you and a parent (and other cases hold that a parent can't sue for damage to the relationship between parent and child if the child is injured/killed). The cases lay out the reasoning, but the main point is that you personally would not have a case that you could sue the nursing home, as Minnesota does not recognize this cause of action.

There IS a case for spousal loss of consortium, and your mother can pursue that on her own. There'd also be a case for personal injury that the estate would have, and the executor / administrator can bring that on behalf of the estate (but not personally, as that case belonged to your father... as he is no longer around it would have to be brought by a legal representative of your father, which in the estate context is an administrator/executor).

Aside from the lawsuits mentioned above, the ONLY other recourse would be to file a complaint with the Minnesota Board of Examiners for Nursing Home Administrators: https://mn.gov/boards/nursing-home/complaints/

I know this is probably not what you wanted to hear, but it is the law. I hope that clears things up anyway. If you have any other questions, please let me know. If not, and you have not yet, please rate my answer AND press the "submit" button, if applicable. Please note that I don't get any credit for the time and effort that I spent on this answer unless and until you rate it positively (3 or more stars). Look for the stars on your screen (★★★★★). Thank you, ***** ***** luck to you!

Expert:  ScottyMacEsq replied 1 month ago.

Hope that clears things up a bit. If you have any other questions, please let me know. If not, and you have not yet, please rate my answer AND press the "submit" button, if applicable.

Please note that I don't get any credit for the time and effort that I spent on this answer unless and until you rate it positively (3 or more stars). Look for the stars on your screen (★★★★★). You may need to scroll left/right/up/down to see these stars, but note that the rating is what closes out this question, so it is necessary that you do so.

Thank you, ***** ***** luck to you!

Related Legal Questions