Sid Slater discusses the issue in the DeSoto Times-Tribune last week, pointing out the legislation that would have required non-government nursing homes to carry the same $500,000 in liability coverage that government nursing homes carry passed the House Insurance Committee by unanimous vote only to die in the full House. Many private nursing homes in Mississippi do not carry liability insurance sufficient to cover claims up to the statutory cap of $500,000 and some carry so-called “eroding” policies that take the nursing home’s legal fees and other court costs out of the available liability insurance before a victim is compensated. Slater poses the question that should be obvious to lawmakers- “Is that fair to vulnerable patients in those private facilities? Is it fair for them to have paid taxes or have families paying taxes that subsidize the public nursing homes’ tort claim coverage while the laws allow private nursing homes to be uninsured or underinsured for the very same offenses against the elderly? No.”
We could not agree more. The nursing home organizations and the insurance companies got the “tort reform” caps they sought before, and now, the elderly at least deserve accountability from those same entities. Most of Mississippi’s nursing homes treat those in their care with the utmost respect and compassion, and they should be commended for doing a good job. But the companies that abuse, that make victims of those that can least protect themselves, they should not be given a “get-out-of-jail card” that lets them avoid liability for their negligence or wrong doing.
If you or someone you love has been abused in a Mississippi nursing home, please contact an experienced and qualified Mississippi personal injury attorney who will fight for the protection and compensation that you deserve. Unfortunately, powerful lobbies are trying to not only write the rules, but also minimize the penalties when they break the rules, leaving aggressive representation as most victims only real hope.