With a large number of people of different backgrounds, cultures, and temperaments working together under pressure, litigations can be unavoidable in senior care facilities. Richard Scharlat explains the protections and strategies that can be put in place to lessen the risk of litigations or reduce the chance of incidents leading to lawsuits from occurring.
As a long-term care employment litigator, Richard has represented nursing homes and senior care facilities across the country.
Litigations can come in a plethora of different forms, yet they all share the same effect of draining resources and time as well as disrupting workflow.
Richard states that in order to decrease the likelihood of litigations or at least maintain more control over the process once they play out, employers need to put in place several key protections and strategies.
Firstly, good systems of documenting incidents need to be implemented. Since nursing homes often do not possess robust HR offices, documentation responsibilities must be shared between a number of inter-culturally aware, qualified personnel.
These systems must be as up-to-date, easy to access, and user-friendly as possible to ensure that important information, such as signed employee arbitration agreements and incident reports, are easy to find and access.
Training that clearly outlines policies around expected behavior and what is considered harassment must also take place regularly and be presented in an engaging way.
Lastly, to maintain more control in court, eliminate the threat of a jury, and minimize the chance of a class or collective action, employers should seek out an arbitration program.