The population of Southern California is aging rapidly, as it is in many other regions of the state and the country. As more older adults require care in nursing homes and move into assisted-living facilities, those seniors may be at greater risk of suffering injuries as a result of elder abuse and neglect. Yet most instances of nursing home abuse or neglect are preventable. Indeed, if California nursing facilities had more staff members, had better screening processes for elder care licenses, and took more steps to prevent injuries like falls in nursing homes, fewer older adults would get hurt. According to a recent article in StateofReform.com, several new laws will take effect in California in 2020, and many of them are designed to help older adults.
We want to tell you more about these laws and to explain how they may help to prevent senior injuries in nursing homes and assisted-living facilities.
SB 280: Reassessing the California Residential Code and Fall Prevention
Many seniors in Riverside County get hurt as a result of falls in nursing homes and assisted-living facilities. If these older adults were monitored more closely by staff members, it is possible that these falls would not occur. At the same time, the issue of nursing home neglect in these kinds of cases may not be as necessary to address if facilities were simply safer for seniors. SB 280 addresses building standards and fall prevention in California structures. According to the article, the bill requires the California Department of Housing and Community Development “to investigate possible changes to the building standards in the California Residential Code that promote aging-in-place design, such as the location of doorbells, light switches, heating, and the installation of grab bars in bathrooms.”
AB 737: Licensing Requirements for Nursing Homes
Under AB 737, or the California Residential Care Facilities for the Elderly Act, anyone who wants to obtain a license for a residential senior care facility in the state will be required to file an application through the California Department of Social Services. In applying for a license, individuals will be required to disclose “beneficial ownership interest of 10% or more in a facility.” This shift is designed to prevent people from getting licenses and opening nursing homes when they should not be able to do so as a result of background issues, and it is also designed to prevent someone from opening a nursing home solely for the purposes of financial profit.
SB 314: Damages for Elder Abuse or Neglect
The Elder Abuse and Dependent Adult Civil Protection Act, or SB 314, will allow an elderly plaintiff to obtain attorney’s fees and damages for physical elder abuse or neglect.
Seek Advice from a Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer in Riverside County
Elder abuse and neglect can happen almost anywhere, from fancy and expensive nursing homes to the residences of a senior’s close family member. If you are concerned about an elderly loved one’s safety, it is important to seek advice from an experienced Riverside County nursing home abuse attorney. We have years of experience handling elder abuse claims and can help with your case. Contact the Walton Law Firm to learn more about how we assist seniors and their families in Southern California.
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