Tuesday, August 3, 2010

New IL Law Strengthens the Legal Definition of "Criminal Neglect"

The Illinois Criminal Code's definition of "Criminal Neglect" of a nursing home resident has been amended. The new definition considers "Criminal Neglect" to include a reckless act or failure to perform and act that creates "the substantial likelihood that an elderly person's or person with a disability's life will be endangered, health will be injured, or pre-existing physical or mental condition will deteriorate."

Prior to this change the law provided that the elderly or disabled person had to be endangered or harmed. This new change could also penalize a reckless or negligent nursing home staff member for any reckless act or failure that creates a substantial likelihood the the elderly or disabled person would be endangered or harmed. This means that if the elderly or disabled person is put in harms way, under the law this could be viewed with the same severity as actually endangering or harming the person.

This change is a part of the same legislation that requires extensive disclosures and reporting by nursing homes that was detailed in the Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect in Illinois blog post you can find by clicking here.

If you or a loved one have been the victim of what you think is Criminal Neglect due to poor care in a nursing home, please contact Attorney Mike Keating at 312-208-7702 or MKeating@KeatingLegal.com.