Illinois Appellate Court Reverses Dismissal of Nursing Home Abuse Claim Involving Government Tort Immunity Act Defense

When we admit a loved one to a nursing home facility, we trust that they will receive appropriate care and support. Finding out that a nursing home failed to take good care of your relative and caused them to suffer harm can be devastating and traumatic. One option that may be available to you and your family is pursuing compensation through a personal injury lawsuit. A lawyer can assist you with reviewing your situation to see whether the nursing home that was responsible for your loved one’s well-being is financially liable for the expenses associated with their injuries or untimely death. Contact Therman Law Offices today to learn more about working with a Chicago nursing home abuse lawyer.

In a recent case, the plaintiff alleged that his legally disabled relative was a resident at a county-owned nursing home in De Kalb county and that the nursing home facility failed to provide her with adequate care under the Illinois Nursing Home Care Act. More specifically, the complaint stated that the facility knew or should have known that the resident was at high risk for developing pressure sores and that they neglected to care for her in this capacity. The plaintiff alleged that the facility was negligent in failing to create a schedule for turning and repositioning his relative to prevent the sores from developing.

The county moved to dismiss the complaint, arguing that the state’s Tort Immunity Act took precedence over the Nursing Home Care Act. When a government entity is sued for negligence in Illinois, there are special rules that a plaintiff must follow that are different from a regular personal injury case. Under the Tort Immunity Act, there are certain situations in which a government entity cannot be held liable for negligence, for example. The county pointed to several provisions in the Tort Immunity Act to argue that the employees at the nursing home facility could not hold a public employee liable when the public employee was acting within the course and scope of their employment.

The trial court agreed with the county and dismissed the plaintiff’s complaint. The plaintiff filed an appeal. On review, the appellate court noted that only one of the 17 causes of action in the plaintiff’s complaint alleged that the county failed to properly train the employees who provided care to the resident.

Although the Tort Immunity Act provides the county with immunity from allegations of failing to supervise its employees, the appellate court concluded that the remaining 16 claims were not barred by the Tort Immunity Act. This includes claims about failing to provide adequate medical care, failing to provide necessary services, and failing to prevent a decline in her ability to care for herself. The appellate court remanded the case for further proceedings about these claims.

If you or a loved one has suffered injuries under the care of a nursing home, contact Therman Law Offices today. Our team of compassionate Chicago nursing home abuse lawyers will help you determine whether you have a right to financial recovery. To learn more, contact us today for a free consultation. Dial 773-545-8849 or contact us online to get started.

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