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Can You Sue a Rehab Facility for Negligence?

Rehab, also known as rehabilitation centers, are usually the first step to drug or alcohol recovery and offer detox services. California has thousands of rehab centers all around Los Angeles County, Orange County, San Diego County, etc.  

Although several laws are in place that determine the level of treatment these rehab centers are to provide, rehab centers do not always follow policies and procedures. Sometimes, employees at a rehab center could act negligently.

What are rehab centers?

Rehab centers are those that treat patients with drug and alcohol issues. There are two  types of centers referred to as a rehab center in California, and this includes:

Rehab is used interchangeably to describe both of the above facilities. Despite the two facilities being drastically different, they still have to uphold a standard of care with their patients, given that their patients are sensitive due to substance abuse or old age.

Could I file a lawsuit against a rehab facility for negligence?

Under California law, rehab facilities have several duties that they must follow through. If they fail to follow through with these duties, then they may be expected to pay compensation to the injured party. You have the right to file a lawsuit or claim against a rehab facility for failing to act safely. But there are various reasons why a rehab facility could get sued. Below are the specific circumstances discussed.

What are examples of negligence at a rehab center?

 Dangerous Conditions On The Property

Rehab centers have a duty to make sure that they prevent any dangerous conditions on their property. This means that under California law, they should make sure that the premises they have is safe for their patients and visitors. This is especially true for older patients who have difficulty walking, and are at risk for slips and falls. Rehab centers must constantly make sure that their floors are free from any objects that may pose a tripping hazard. Examples of dangerous conditions could include wet floors, loose wires, large objects on the floor, and sharp objects near walls.

In order to prove that a rehab center was negligent with a dangerous condition on their property, you must show:

  •  The rehab center had a duty to make sure that their property was free from dangerous conditions
  •  The rehab center failed to follow this duty. This means that they lacked enough staff to keep the areas clean and safe, or did not have proper protocols in place to ensure a safe facility.
  •  Because the rehab center failed to follow the study, a patient was injured
  •  the patient now has damages, or injuries sustained.

Improper Drug Treatment

Detox rehab centers have a responsibility to make sure that their patients are properly treated, and that they overcome their substance abuse addictions. This means that rehab centers must make an effort to keep patients away from drugs or alcohol, while also helping them cope with the withdrawals. This is a very specific strategy that must be followed through carefully or could result in injuries.

 For example, going cold turkey when a patient is involved in taking dangerous drugs could lead to death or serious injury, such as concussions. A detox facility has to make sure that they properly manage the patient’s withdrawals and symptoms, while also ensuring that they have proper treatment at all times.

 In order to have a claim against a rehab center for malpractice, you must show:

  •  The detox rehab center had a duty to the patient to make the patient safe and walk the patient through treatment.
  •  The detox rehab center failed to create a safe treatment plan that was personalized to the patient.
  •  Because they failed to create a safe treatment plan, the patient has now suffered injury or death.
Nurse walking older rehab patient through hallway

Unsanitary Property

Whether a detox center or an elder facility, both facilities are medical facilities that should be cleaned properly, to prevent any illnesses or infections. For example, all facilities must sanitize bathrooms, change bed sheets often, and make sure that all medical equipment, such as needles are properly sterilized.

 In order to file a claim against a rehab center for an unsanitary condition, you must show:

  •  The facility failed to keep the premises clean and have a proper protocol in place to prevent unsanitary conditions.
  •  Unsanitary conditions existed in the facility, such as used needles or syringes.
  •  These unsanitary conditions caused a patient to suffer injury, such as an infection.
  •  The patient now has damages that they have to deal with.

What will our rehab negligence attorneys do?

  • Investigate the cause of the injury: unfortunately, after an incident, rehab facilities may try to cover up their negligence. That is why we recommend that you get in touch with an attorney as soon as possible if you suspect that a rehab center has failed to uphold their duty. Our attorneys will begin investigating the circumstances, by looking into previous claims made, cleaning protocols, employment contracts, etc. 
  • Negotiate your case: we know that there are several different damages involved with a negligent rehab matter. For example, there may be medical bills, emotional distress, along with lost wages, and other economic losses. We take into account all the compensation that you have suffered and will need in the future. There are also punitive damages that our attorneys could recover. Punitive damages established that the other party was malicious. 
  • Our top-rated Heidari law attorneys will prove negligence by interviewing witnesses, reviewing photographs or videos, and reviewing employment records. There are various different types of evidence we gathered depending on the circumstances of the rehab negligence. The more evidence we gather in your favor, the stronger your case. Get in touch with us today to schedule a complimentary consultation with our contingency fee lawyers. Contingency fees are a great way of allowing our attorneys to pay for all upfront costs, to give you a piece of mind.

Could I file a lawsuit against a rehab if a specific employee was negligent?

As an employee of a rehab facility who was acting while on the job, a rehab facility could be held responsible for their employee’s actions. This is known as vicarious liability in california. However, some actions, such as drinking while on the job may not qualify for vicarious liability. To see if you could hold the facility responsible for a single employee’s actions, give us a call to discuss. Some cases of negligence, such as standard negligence, could be recoverable against the rehab facility. But, in cases of malice, such as purposefully drinking on the job, an employer may not necessarily cover the employee.

If you believe that a rehab facility has failed to uphold its duties, give us a call today to set up a one-on-one consultation with lawyers who specialize in rehab negligence. Our California lawyers have been representing patients for the last several decades in various different we have negligent cases. Make sure that you have an experienced and specialized attorney on your side, and schedule a one-on-one today.

Injury suffered from a negligent rehab facility could be permanent, and require thousands of dollars in medical bills and treatment. No person should have to pay for their treatment if it was caused by another party.

Contact us today for a complimentary case evaluation.

*** Disclaimer: This page, created by Heidari Law Group, is intended for educational purposes only and provides a broad overview of legal principles. It should not be considered specific legal advice. Your use of this site and review of this material does not establish an attorney-client relationship with Heidari Law or any of its members. Laws are subject to change, and therefore some information presented here may not reflect current legal standards. All logos and images on this site are the property of their respective owners and are used only for illustrative purposes; their presence does not indicate endorsement or affiliation. Please respect the copyright restrictions of these images and logos. If you have concerns about copyright infringement or require proper attribution, contact us immediately. We are committed to honoring intellectual property rights and will respond promptly to any issues.

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Sam Heidari

Sam Ryan Heidari

Sam Heidari is the founding principal of Heidari Law Group, a law firm specializing in personal injury, wrongful death, and employment law with offices in California and Nevada. Sam Heidari has been practicing law for over 11 years and handles a wide range of cases including car accidents, wrongful death, employment discrimination, and product liability. The Heidari Law Group legal firm is known for its comprehensive approach, handling cases from initial consultation through to final judgment. Sam Heidari is dedicated to community involvement and advocacy for civil liberties.

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