Everybody deserves a life that’s free of unnecessary pain or trauma. Just because the victim of negligence or abuse is elderly and in nursing care doesn’t mean that person isn’t just as entitled to compensation as someone younger and healthier.

When approaching a personal injury claim involving a nursing home, it is important to build a case around the injuries, or damages, a patient has suffered as a result of any abuse or negligence. That means gathering documentation like medical reports, nursing notes, therapy records, photos and anything else that tends to illustrate the problems.

In order to make the initial consultation with your attorney flow more smoothly, consider writing down the answers to the following questions:

1. What medical expenses have been caused by the neglect or abuse?

Look for charges related to hospitalization, emergency care, wound care, lab tests, medications, physical therapy, emotional therapy and attendant care services.

2. What sort of physical pain has resulted from the neglect or abuse?

Physical pain is one of the considerations used when determining a personal injury award. Write down what pain you’ve suffered as a result of immobilization, bed sores, bruises and broken bones. If you’ve had to endure surgery as a result of the abuse or neglect, don’t forget to include the time you spent healing as part of the pain you suffered.

3. What sort of emotional or mental damage have you suffered?

Do you now have trouble sleeping? Have you been struggling with depression after the injury? Are you afraid of people in a way that you never were before? If you’ve been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety or depression since your injury, make certain that you let your attorney know.

4. Has your injury affected your overall ability to enjoy life?

Some experiences leave a lasting impact on victims. That can affect someone’s ability to engage with others and cause ongoing mobility issues that prevent him or her from enjoying old hobbies.

Your attorney will take all of these things into consideration when deciding how much compensation you can reasonably request. That’s an important first step toward recovery.

Source: FindLaw, “Proving a Complaint Against a Nursing Home,” accessed March 16, 2018