Massachusetts Nursing Home Neglect Laws
Cap on Damages
Massachusetts places a $500,000 cap on non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases.
Statute of Limitations
In Massachusetts, the statute of limitations on personal injury claims in generally 3 years. The statute of limitations on wrongful death claims is 3 years from date of death or 3 years from date when executor or administrator of the estate knew or should have known of the factual basis for a cause of action.
The contingency fee is the most common form of payment arrangement for plaintiffs seeking representation in nursing home injury litigation. With a contingent fee, instead of a law firm billing on an hourly basis, the law firm is paid a percentage of the settlement or award.
Enforcement of Massachusetts Nursing Home Regulations
The Massachusetts Department of Public Health is responsible for ensuring that the Commonwealth’s long term care facilities provide good quality care, quality of life and safety for nursing home residents. The state of Massachusetts nursing home regulations are codified in statute 105 CMR 150.000 Licensing of Long Term Care Facilities. In Massachusetts, residents are guaranteed rights under state and federal law. Under the law, Massachusetts nursing home residents are given the right to a dignified existence, self-determination, and communication with and access to persons and services inside and outside the facility. A long term care facility has a duty to protect and promote the rights of each resident. Some important rights of nursing home residents include:
- The right to be informed about what rights and responsibilities he or she has in a language the resident understands
- The right to choose a physician
- The right to participate in treatment decisions and care planning
- The right to privacy and confidentiality in sending and receiving mail or using the telephone
- The right to voice grievances without reprisal
- The right to socialize (or not socialize) with others from outside the facility
- The right to keep and use personal possessions
- The right to share a room with a spouse if mutually agreeable
In Massachusetts, nursing home are regulated by the Massachusetts Department of Health. The Department of Health performs periodic inspections of nursing home facilities to ensure compliance with licensing and safety requirements. It will also receive and investigate complaints of ongoing or recent problems. If it is found that a facility has committed a safety or health violation the facility will be required to fix the problem or may be issued penalties.
Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. It is not legal advice and should not be used as legal advice. The legal statutes, laws and procedures contained in this article may not be current and may have been revised since the time of publication or contain errors. An attorney can provide legal guidance only after reviewing the details of your individual case.