Identifying and Suing the Correct Corporate Entities in Nursing Home Neglect Cases

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Nursing homes are usually owned and operated by for-profit corporate entities controlled by extremely sophisticated investors.  Recently, there has been a trend whereby private equity firms have purchased nursing home chains with the goal of achieving large profits through cost cutting measures including reduction of staff and expenses. 
 
In this regard, teams of corporate and transactional attorneys are retained in order to reduce litigation costs and payouts in nursing home neglect cases through the use of complex layers of corporate shells making it very difficult to identify the correct entity that is legally responsible for paying out a claim.  As reported by the New York Times in a September 23, 2007 article entitled "At Many Homes, More Profit and Less Nursing":
 
Private investment companies have made it very difficult for plaintiffs to succeed in court and for regulators to levy chainwide fees by creating complex corporate structures that obscure who controls the nursing home.
 
(Emphasis added).
 
In our experience litigating nursing home negligence/wrongful death cases, we have encountered many situations where nursing homes have set up numerous layers of corporate entities/corporate shells making it extremely difficult to zero in on the correct corporate entities that must be included as defendants.  This can be especially problematic in cases that are approaching expiration of the statute of limitations because new corporate entities cannot be added to the case after the limitations has expired.
 
Our firm therefore takes careful steps in every case to ensure that the correct and necessary corporate entities are included as defendants.  Oftentimes, this requires early depositions of the nursing home corporate directors and the review of voluminous records and documents. 
 
In addition to these measures, in our Maryland nursing home neglect cases, we contact the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, Office of Health Care Quality in order to obtain a copy of the license issued by the State, as well as other helpful information.  The Maryland Office of Health Care Quality is the state agency within the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene charged with monitoring the quality care in Maryland's 8,000 health care facilities and residential programs. 
 
As a general rule, the corporate entity that has been granted the state license must be included as a defendant in the case.  These licenses are public information and can be obtain by contacting:
 
Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
Office of Health Care Quality
Spring Grove Medical Center
Bland Bryant Building
55 Wade Avenue
Catonsville, Maryland 21228
(410) 402-8000
(877) 402-8218 (toll-free)
 
Please feel free to contact the lawyers at Dever & Feldstein, LLC at (888) 825-9119 for a free consultation if you believe that a family member or loved one has sustained serious injury as a result of bedsores (also known as pressure sores or decubitus ulcers), dehydration, falls or elderly abuse or neglect. 

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This page contains a single entry by David Feldstein published on July 31, 2009 2:27 PM.

Beware of the Geri-Chair -- Prevent Life Threatening Bedsores/Pressure Ulcers/Decubitus Ulcers With Frequent Turning and Repositioning was the previous entry in this blog.

Fatal Consequences of Nursing Home Medication Errors -- Diabetes Medication Mistakes is the next entry in this blog.

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