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Nursing Home Injury Cases-Maintaining Inadequate Insurance Is a New Troubling Tactic

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Cases of nursing home abuse and neglect are quite common these days. The main reason is that many of these facilities are run with an eye towards the bottom line for the owners and not the benefit of the patients. Some corporations which own nursing home facilities will squeeze every last dime out of the facility in part by reducing staff. Another game that the nursing home industry has been playing lately is to carry minimal or no insurance for their mistakes.

More and more in our cases in the nursing home field, the insurance company will advise that they have minimum coverage of $50,000.00 per event. They say that even if the injury may be worth a million dollars, you can only get $50,000.00 because that is all of the insurance that is available. The industry hopes to deter claims by this method. The only thing you can do is try, after the judgment, to collect a judgment against the nursing home. The other trick that the industry has adopted is to have each nursing home separately owned and even have the building owned by a different company from the one operating the facility. Thus, they limit the assets that would even be available if you got a big judgment against them, beyond the insurance. By the way, the reason for reducing the insurance is to prevent suits. It has nothing to do with their financial condition. Studies have shown that the reason malpractice insurance costs have gone up is primarily not because of the amount of claims, but because insurers were earning less profit on their reserves. The nursing home industry is using the minimal insurance as a weapon against their own patients. Unfortunately, there is not any regulation yet that prevents them from playing this game. A savvy family might actually request current information on a nursing home’s available insurance coverage before placing a family member in a facility, until states close down the inadequate insurance game.