Nursing home camera law implemented in Illinois

Pantagraph reported on January 2 that nursing homes in the state of Illinois have just been added to the list of elder care facilities that will now follow the new law of installing video cameras in care facilities. The installation and recordings of the cameras will be able to ensure that the events that occur in nursing homes are recorded and reported accurately.

The bill became a law on January 1, and it permits the recording and monitoring devices inside nursing home patients’ rooms. About 860 nursing homes in Illinois will be involved in the new policy. The new law apparently came about after thousands of calls and complaints, which mostly involved long-term care homes, were made to the Illinois Department of Public Health.

Lisa Madigan, Attorney General of Illinois, stated that the installation of cameras will be beneficial to both patients and nursing home institutions. Nursing homes could monitor and apprehend those who engage in abusive behavior and misconduct.

If your loved one has been assaulted, abused, or injured in a Chicago nursing home, please consult with our legal team at Peck Ritchey, LLC. Call us at (855) 328-5787 to let us help you put a stop to the mistreatment of your loved one immediately.

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Types of Elder Abuse

Elder abuse can happen anywhere. As seniors become more frail over time, they become less able to defend themselves from different kinds of attacks. Sadly, there are many people out there who see this weakness as an opportunity to abuse, neglect, or take advantage of elderly individuals. There are three different categories of abuse that elderly victims may suffer:

  • Emotional abuse – This category usually involves an attacker causing emotional distress or mental anguish to elderly victims. The most common form of emotional abuse is verbal, and may manifest as yelling, humiliation, blaming, and threatening. Nonverbal emotional abuse includes isolating, terrorizing, and ignoring the elderly victim.
  • Sexual abuse – This is when intimate contact is made without permission or consent from the victim. This form of abuse may include instances that are sexually suggestive, like the exposure to pornographic materials.
  • Physical abuse – This is perhaps the most common form of elder abuse, and it is characterized as any non-accidental use of force that leads to the elder’s physical pain or injury.

Unfortunately, the care facilities we entrust our elderly loved ones to are often the settings for these types of abuse or neglect. If your loved one has suffered as a result of a nursing home staff member’s actions or behavior in Chicago, do not hesitate to speak with our lawyers at Peck Ritchey, LLC. Call us now at (855) 328-5787 to let us put a stop to this abuse.

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Research seeks to identify causes of nursing home neglect, abuse

When choosing a nursing home for a loved one, families have a number of factors to consider before making any final decisions.

Carolyn Pickering, an assistant professor at Michigan State University, decided to conduct research in an effort to determine what leads to nursing home abuse and neglect. To this end, Pickering interviewed a number of nursing home employees before coming to the following conclusions.

Under-staffing is considered one of the more pervasive problems in the health care industry. Ironically, many caregivers in elderly homes are driven to quit due to the lack of support, causing this issue to worsen. Poor working conditions are a factor as well, specifically the fact that few employees are required to do more work than they are reasonably capable of doing alone. Beyond this, these employees work for very little compensations, a factor which may put them in “morally distressing positions where they don’t have a choice about the quality of care they provide.”

 

While these issues are serious and should be dealt with, no elderly resident in a nursing home deserves to bear the brunt of conditions that they cannot control. If your loved one has suffered neglect or abuse at the hands of nursing home staff, contact the attorneys of Peck Ritchey, LLC by calling (855) 328-5787 today.

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Malnutrition and nursing home abuse

Typically, the kind of nursing home abuse that we are aware of involves physical or emotional violence. However, one of the common forms of abuse in a care facility that people are often unable to see is malnutrition. This form of abuse may go on for a while before the effects become visible and concerned friends or family may notice, and therein lies the problem. An employee’s failure to provide nourishment needed to sustain the health of a patient must immediately be reported.

An elderly person’s appetite may alter, especially when taking medications, and this can also make it very difficult to identify when an employee is failing to provide sustenance. However, it is the responsibility of nursing home employees to do everything in their power to give their patients the food and care that they need. Because early detection is vital in correcting malnourishment, those with elderly family members should watch for the following signs:

  • Redness or swelling around the eyes, deteriorated vision
  • Canker sores, excessive redness in the mouth
  • Flaccid muscles

If you know someone in Chicago who is suffering from any form of nursing home abuse, please immediately consult with our legal team at Peck Ritchey, LLC to discuss what legal action may be available to take. Call us today at (855) 328-5787.

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What Attorneys Concentrating In Elder Law In Chicago Want You To Know About Planning For Your Parents’ Future

Estate Planning Lawyers ChicagoIf your parents or grandparents are aging, there are a lot of things that need to be done in order to prepare your family for its changing dynamics. When you're considering your options for the future, it's best if all family members are on the same page. To help make this process an easier one, attorneys who concentrate in elder law in Chicago have a few tips about things that you should consider when starting this sensitive conversation.

What Attorneys Concentrating In Elder Law In Chicago Want You To Know: Start The Conversation Early

If you're noticing that your parents or grandparents are having a hard time getting around or become easily confused, you need to have a serious conversation about the future as soon as possible. However, attorneys who concentrate in elder law in Chicago recommend starting a conversation well before it's needed. When you can discuss the future with your parents when they're still able to make all decisions for themselves, they can play an active role in deciding where they're going to live and how they want things to be handled in case they're not able to make decisions for themselves.

What Attorneys Concentrating In Elder Law In Chicago Want You To Know: Legal Counsel Isn't Always Necessary

Many families worry that they need the help of an attorney who concentrates in elder law in Chicago before they start a conversation with their parents or grandparents about the future. If your older relatives still have their mental faculties, this isn't necessary. However, if they aren't fully competent, it may be important to contact an attorney who concentrates in elder law in Chicago for assistance. He or she will be able to help you determine if you need to apply for a guardianship so you can make healthcare and other decisions for your parents.

What Attorneys Concentrating In Elder Law In Chicago Want You To Know: About Driving

Driving is a privilege, but many older drivers have been behind the wheel for decades, which can make it seem like a right instead of a privilege. This makes it difficult for seniors to accept when it's time to hang up the car keys. Laws can vary when it comes to seniors and driving, but in Illinois, drivers must apply for renewal every two years between ages 81-86 and every year when they reach age 87 and older. Drivers age 75 and older also need to take a road test in order to renew their driver's license. What happens, however, if your parent has recently had a number of accidents or you feel as if he or she shouldn't be driving anymore, even though they are legally able to? An attorney concentrating in elder law in Chicago can provide you with legal advice on how to approach this situation.

Aging is inevitable and if families don't have a plan for their aging parents or grandparents, it could cause a lot of stress and havoc. If you have questions regarding elder law in Chicago, please visit Peck Ritchey, LLC. To learn more about the firm's services, please visit http://www.peckbloom.com/about-us.html.

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Is an Elder Law Lawyer for You?

Elder Law ChicagoElder law is an area of practice that concentrates on issues that affect the aging population.  But don’t let the name fool you, elder law lawyers work with individuals of all ages!

How do you know if you need a Chicago elder law attorney?
At Peck Ritchey we have an array of Chicago elder law attorneys who concentrate in many different areas. Finding the right lawyer starts with an assessment of your needs. For example, if you need help with estate planning, our Chicago elder law firm has extensive estate planning experience. If you have an issue with a will, trust or even abuse/neglect, our elder law litigation lawyers can address that issue in court if necessary.

Ways an elder law lawyer in Chicago can help:
Peck Ritchey, LLC provides an array of services for seniors, including planning for health care decisions, end-of-life issues, and meeting possible long term care needs. An elder law lawyer can also assist with general estate planning, administration, and guardianship proceedings, and even litigation matters.

Contact the Chicago elder law attorneys at Peck Ritchey, LLC today for an initial consultation at 312.201.0900.

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Understanding The Most Common Problems That Probate Attorneys In Illinois Can Help With

Elder Law Chicago

If you don't understand what probate attorneys in Illinois do, you're not alone. Many people don't understand what types of services probate attorneys in Illinois provide — that is until they need one! If you're confused about what this type of lawyer can do for you, learn about the most common problems that probate attorneys in Illinois take care of. You may be surprised at what you learn.

Probate Attorneys In Illinois Can Write A Will To Avoid A Lengthy Probate Process

Probate always happens after someone dies. Although it sounds highly technical, it's often quite simple. You'll need to prove that a will is valid, which is easy to do if a professional, experienced attorney wrote the will. The more quickly a will is validated and proven, the faster the beneficiaries can receive their share of the estate.

If you're writing your will and want to provide even more protection against a lengthy probate process, consider adding a no-contest clause to ensure that your wishes are followed. If you're writing your will with an attorney, don't keep it a secret! Let your family members know what's in it and if you have special treasured belongings, consider going through them with your family members so that they understand what they can expect to receive after you're gone. If you have multiple children, one of them may want a treasured painting hanging in your home, while another may want to receive Grandma's antique china. Spelling out what should happen with each item after you've passed can help eliminate unnecessary arguments after you're gone and keep the peace between your loved ones.

Probate Attorneys In Illinois Can Help Contest A Will

However, if you're a family member and suspect that your loved one was under duress when the will was written, you can contest it with help from probate attorneys in Illinois. A lengthy fight can drain the estate of resources, which means contesting a will shouldn't be taken lightly if you're already a beneficiary. On the other hand, if you are a beneficiary and someone else is contesting the will, you can use a probate attorney to help fight against this and protect the estate.

Probate Attorneys In Illinois Can Help Avoid High Inheritance Taxes

Inheritance taxes can be quite high and many people think that they're unavoidable. However it is possible to alter a will legally to shield beneficiaries from expensive inheritance taxes. It's vital that this is done with the help of experienced probate attorneys in Illinois to make sure that the process is done legally — otherwise you could face problems other than high inheritance taxes!

If you think you need the assistance of probate attorneys in Illinois, contact Peck Ritchey, LLC. The helpful attorneys at Peck Ritchey are experienced in probate, estate planning, guardianships and tax law and will be able to help, no matter what type of services you need.

                                                                                                             

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3 Ways A Chicago Guardianship Lawyer Can Help Families

Chicago Elder Law LawyerGuardianship is a tricky subject for many families. It's difficult when it becomes clear that a loved one can no longer care for himself, especially if he was a self-sufficient adult at one time. If you're unsure what a Chicago guardianship lawyer can do, learn more about how they can help families throughout difficult times.

A Chicago Guardianship Lawyer Can Help Minors

The most commonly understood guardianship is when both parents of a minor child have died. If the parents have left a will, it should name who will be guardians of the child. If there was no will, a Chicago guardianship lawyer can help establish guardianship with the court. This can be straightforward if only one person steps forward, but more complicated if loved ones disagree on who would be the best guardian for the child.

Additionally, a Chicago guardianship lawyer can help grandparents or other loved ones step in if the parent is neglecting a minor child or even if a parent is a member of the military and needs to be deployed to a far away location. Guardianships do not sever the parent-child relationship and it's possible to relinquish guardianship for a limited time.

A Chicago Guardianship Lawyer Can Help The Mentally Ill

It's possible to have someone declared mentally ill and a Chicago guardianship lawyer can help loved ones assert control over their medical and financial decisions. One of the most famous cases of this type of situation was the case of Britney Spears a few years ago. She became even more famous when she shaved her head and attacked paparazzi with an umbrella, and people all over the world expressed concern over her behavior. In this case, her parents — specifically her father — realized she needed help and stepped in. He went to court and asked to be granted guardianship, though in California it was called a conservatorship. (The two terms are not completely legally interchangeable, so make sure to talk to an attorney if you need to understand the differences.)

This meant that Britney's father was legally responsible for her financial decisions, but he also decided where she lived and which doctors she should see. It's quite clear to anyone that this was the right decision for the Spears' family, as Britney just finished a successful run as a judge on the X Factor. It was unclear whether Britney's conservatorship would end any time in the near future. 

A Chicago Guardianship Lawyer Can Help Seniors

Lastly, a Chicago guardianship lawyer can help seniors if they're unable to make decisions for themselves, including medical and financial decisions. Seniors can be particularly susceptible to falling for financial scams and a guardianship can help protect their assets from this. Additionally, having a guardian can help ensure that seniors receive the medical care they need, especially if they're suffering from health problems like dementia or Alzheimer's. 

 

These are only three instances in which a Chicago guardianship lawyer can be of service. If you're not sure whether your situation requires this arrangement, contact Peck Ritchey. We can take a look at your specific situation and help you determine whether a guardianship could benefit your family.

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How Attorneys Concentrating In Elder Law In Chicago Can Protect Elderly Relatives

Estate Planning Lawyers ChicagoIf you have loved ones who are getting older, it's important to plan for a number of situations. An attorney who concentrates in elder law in Chicago can help with quite a few issues, including financial planning, guardianship and preventing financial elder abuse through a power of attorney. Taking the time to prepare for these situations can help protect your loved ones as they age.

Attorneys Specializing In Elder Law In Chicago Can Help With Financial Planning

Getting older is expensive, especially if long-term medical care is necessary. The cost of long-term care can be staggering and can quickly wipe out a family's resources in just a few short years. To protect your assets, meet with an elder law attorney. He or she will know what's necessary for you to quality for services like Medicaid, how to legally protect your assets whenever possible and keep your relative living in her own home if that's what she would like to do.

A Lawyer With Experience In Elder Law In Chicago Can Help With Guardianship

It's very likely that your elderly relative will become unable to care for him or herself at some point. If you're worried about them harming themselves in an accident, or you're concerned that they could be swindled out of their financial resources, it may be necessary to establish a guardianship. A lawyer with experience in elder law in Chicago will be able to draw up guardianship papers so that you can be the one responsible for financial, health and living decisions.

Establishing guardianship can be difficult, especially if multiple family members don't agree on who should be the guardian or if it's even necessary. You will also need the help of an attorney who concentrates in elder law in Chicago to help get the person declared legally incompetent, which can cause plenty of hurt feelings.

An Attorney Who Concentrates In Elder Law In Chicago Can Prevent Financial Abuse With A Power Of Attorney

Elder abuse is a major problem and it can include physical, mental and sexual abuse, neglect, abandonment and financial abuse. While the police should be contacted if you suspect elder abuse, an attorney who concentrates in elder law in Chicago can help protect seniors against financial abuse. If you're concerned that a loved one is being swindled out of their money, or someone is taking advantage of them, contact a lawyer about drawing up a power of attorney. A power of attorney will give financial control to someone else, which can protect your loved one's bank account.

If you have a loved one who seems to be losing money, is worried about affording long term care or you think they're unable to care for themselves, it might be time to contact an attorney who concentrates in elder law in Chicago. The attorneys at Peck Ritchey are elder law experts and can help you or your loved ones throughout every step of the aging process.

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Lawyers Aren’t Just For Lawsuits: How A Lawyer Can Help As You Age

Chicago Guardianship LawyerMany people watch legal dramas on television and think that an attorney spends the majority of his or her time in court, arguing before a judge or jury. While it's true that some attorneys work in litigation, there is one group of lawyers that dedicate themselves to helping their clients as they age. Getting older is certainly inevitable, but there are certain steps that an attorney that concentrates in elder law in Chicago can take to help older adults as they age.

Estate Planning Lawyers Who Work With Elder Law In Chicago

 

Estate planning is a major part of an elder law attorney's job. While many people know that estate planning is important, they don't really understand what this means. One of the first things that needs to be done is writing a will. A will can help your family members understand what will happen with your belongings after you pass on, which can help alleviate a lot of stress for your family members after you're gone.

 

However, a will isn't the only document that needs to be drawn up. You'll also need to create a power of attorney. This document is useful in the event that you're unable to make medical decisions for yourself, because it gives another person the authority to speak for you. A living will can also help with specific medical situations, such as if you're unable to breathe or eat on your own.

Guardianship Attorneys Who Specialize In Elder Law In Chicago

No one really wants to think about the day their parents are unable to care for themselves, but if this happens, it's important to work with a lawyer who can help with elder law in Chicago. These attorneys can assist you throughout the legal process of taking over your parents' medical decisions and finances, which can help keep older adults safe from scammers.

Planning For Unique Situations

Although it's hard to talk about, many people will need some sort of professional care as they age. An attorney who understands elder law in Chicago will be able to plan for long-term medical care, including cases of Alzheimer's disease. Long-term care can be quite expensive and these attorneys help families maximize care, while keeping finances intact.

If you're concerned with taking care of your aging parents or another beloved older adult, the best thing to do is to contact attorneys who specialize in elder law in Chicago. The professional team of attorneys at Peck Ritchey always keeps your family's best interests in mind. Working with a professional attorney who understands elder law in Chicago can help ensure that your family is well taken care of.

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