Group Home Abuse and Neglect in Florida

September 20, 2018 | Attorney, Matthew Dolman
Group Home Abuse and Neglect in Florida

Severe Injury Due to Group Home Neglect

Many disadvantaged individuals may find themselves within the care of a residential care facility or as they are more commonly known as group homes. Within these group homes, several individuals that are unable to live with their families or on their own due to a variety of possible conditions, stay with a group home social worker or caregiver that will facilitate an environment that accommodates their condition and allows them to grow. Group homes can give individuals that have mental handicaps, physical disabilities, or foster care wards a safe environment to live but there are times when the situation they are in is taken advantage of. Reports of abuse that occurs within these group homes circulate frequently and the residents of these group homes continue to suffer injuries and trauma from the neglectful and abusive experiences they have. These victims of group home abuse can be eligible to seek legal action against the parties liable for their abuse in the form of a Florida group home abuse claim. By proving that the group home operator, a superior, or someone else involved in the operation of the group home was neglectful, then an injured plaintiff would be able to secure compensation for the injuries that they sustained because of said negligence.

What is a Group Home?

Group homes are a kind of care facility originally created to cope with the large numbers of disabled individuals in need of special living assistance. Several individuals with conditions requiring unique care and attention stay in a single home along with one or more caregivers that watch over them. It is these caregiver's professional responsibility to not only watch over their wards conditions but also maintain their safety.

Who Can Suffer From Group Home Neglect/Abuse?

There are many kinds of people that live in group homes and can potentially suffer neglect and abuse. The common factor between all of them is that they are in a disadvantaged position either in terms of their health, ability to function independently or to function within a regular home setting. The most common groups of people that one can find in a group home include:
  • The mentally disabled
  • The physically disabled
  • Foster children
  • The elderly
These individuals or whichever entity is responsible for their wellbeing, place their safety in the hands of these caregivers with the expectation that they will provide professional care. There are many success stories of group homes successfully assisting many individuals needing care but there are also many stories of significant abuse and neglect leaving group home residents traumatized.

Group Home Injuries Caused by Neglect and Abuse

Injuries suffered by group home residents can actually take many forms other than just physical abuse. These individuals are often in situations where they are helpless to protect themselves from a person that might use that vulnerability to their own advantage.

Physical Group Home Injuries

Physical injury in group homes may be the most common to afflict residents. The injuries can occur because of the direct abuse suffered at the hands of someone operating the group home. Some group home caregivers put into a position of power over disabled residents can use their physical advantages in retaliation, anger, to coerce, or sometimes out of sadistic enjoyment. Other times, a group home physical injury can be suffered because of neglectful conditions within the home. Things like broken bones, lacerations, and traumatic brain injuries can occur due to lack of supervision, neglectful maintenance of the home, and poor conditions in the home.

Financial Abuse in Group Homes

Sometimes a caregiver can take advantage of the residents under their care by financially abusing them. Caregivers can steal from their wards either in the form of property theft that they sell for profit or by stealing money directly. In some cases, a caregiver can steal the identity of a resident to make purchases or even sell their information so that someone else can do so.

Emotional Group Home Abuse

Abuse can take a less tangible form when caregivers abuse and neglect their wards emotionally. These individuals are often in situations that can put them at risk for depression or other forms of mental distress. Caregivers can easily cause a resident severe emotional distress through verbal abuse, lack of interaction, and preventing healthy social activity in resident's lives. This emotional abuse can eventually lead to tangible issues where health declines due to weight disorders, sleep disorders, and suicidal thoughts.

Sexual Abuse in Group Homes

Just like many other kinds of care facilities, sexual abuse is a massive issue that plagues the vulnerable. Sexual abuse can happen to anyone regardless of sexual orientation, gender, physical health, or age. The repercussions of sexual abuse can cause serious emotional distress of the aforementioned kind, as well as physical injury to victims.

Group Home Abuse and Neglect Claims

Legal action against those who are responsible for the injuries received by group home residents because of abuse comes in the form of an injury claim that's aim is to recover compensation for damages. An injury claim is not the same as a criminal prosecution of someone that is accused of group home abuse. A group home injury claim falls under the purview of civil law while the other falls under criminal law. They both have different goals and legal processes but a criminally prosecuted party can have an injury lawsuit brought up against them in addition to their criminal charges so that victims can recover compensation. A group home injury claim can be filed against any party whose negligence led to the plaintiff's injury. So the institution that manages the group home in addition to a party that maintains the home can plausibly also be liable for injuries in certain situations.

Seek an Experienced Elder Abuse Attorney

If you or a loved one have suffered an injury due to the neglect of an assisted living facility, nursing home, or another similar facility, then do not hesitate to contact Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA about a free consultation on your possible claim. Our skilled lawyers will sit down with you to lay out your options for legal action and how they can use their expertise to secure you the settlement that you deserve. For a free consultation on your claim you can contact us online or call (727) 451-6900 Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA 800 North Belcher Road Clearwater, FL 33765 727-451-6900


Matthew Dolman

Personal Injury Lawyer

This article was written and reviewed by Matthew Dolman. Matt has been a practicing civil trial, personal injury, products liability, and mass tort lawyer since 2004. He has successfully fought for more than 11,000 injured clients and acted as lead counsel in more than 1,000 lawsuits. Always on the cutting edge of personal injury law, Matt is actively engaged in complex legal matters, including Suboxone, AFFF, and Ozempic lawsuits.  Matt is a lifetime member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum for resolving individual cases in excess of $1 million and $2 million, respectively. He has also been selected by his colleagues as a Florida Superlawyer and as a member of Florida’s Legal Elite on multiple occasions. Further, Matt has been quoted in the media numerous times and is a sought-after speaker on a variety of legal issues and topics.

Learn More