How long does a lawsuit for nursing home abuse or neglect last?

If a member of your family was injured or lost their life because of abuse or neglect on the part of a skilled nursing facility or similar institution, you may be able to obtain compensation through a lawsuit. It is important to understand that while the legal process can work very well in protecting your rights, it does not work quickly.

The first step is to consult with an attorney to determine whether a lawsuit is appropriate in your case. If a lawsuit is filed, then a period of discovery begins, which can last several months or more. During this time, both sides in the lawsuit exchange evidence and make their own determinations about the strength and value of the case.

At any point in the process, a settlement offer may be made, often after at least some discovery has been done. A settlement means that both sides agree to compromise, and the defendant nursing home agrees to pay a certain amount to the injured person or his or her family, who may be willing to accept a payment amount that is less than what might be won at trial, to avoid the uncertainty of a trial.

If the two sides are unable to come to an agreement to settle the case, then it will proceed to trial. A trial often takes place a year or more after a lawsuit is filed.

Other FAQs