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What Rights Do Nursing Home Residents Have in New York State?

When looking for the perfect nursing home for you or a family member, it’s important to understand nursing home resident rights to ensure you get the best care possible. New York state has compiled a bill of rights for nursing home residents, and federal law includes additional protections for those who utilize Medicare, Medicaid, and other government programs.

Unfortunately, nursing home caregivers can violate your rights, despite this bill being in place. In these cases, our legal team at Dalli & Marino, LLP, may be able to help you seek the justice you deserve and hold the at-fault party responsible.

Understanding Nursing Home Resident Rights in New York

New York’s bill of rights for nursing home residents details the protections you have under the state law, and the list is quite long. Every right you have as a nursing home resident falls under one of the following categories:

Dignity and Respect

As a nursing home resident, you have the right to be treated with dignity and respect. Nursing home employees must honor your decisions and needs, which may differ from other residents. Your right to dignity and respect also includes the following:

  • Choosing your own schedule
  • Living in a safe and comfortable environment
  • Interacting with whomever you choose

While some of these options might be limited based on a resident’s medical needs, if accommodations are possible, they should be implemented.

Appropriate Medical Care

In New York, every nursing home resident needs to have accessible, high-quality healthcare at all times. You also have the right to receive all information on your injury, illness, and treatment in a way you can fully understand. Additionally, you can choose your own doctor and have a say in your medical treatment and care.

Information and Communication

When living in a nursing home, you have the right to communicate with other residents, friends, family, and loved ones within the nursing home or via phone call, text, and email. Some homes may have rules regarding visiting hours, but they cannot bar you from communicating with people in person or in private.

Furthermore, the nursing home must also be transparent about the services they offer and the fees they charge. If you have any questions about your bills, you have the right to have those questions answered.

Privacy and Independence

You have the right to privacy in your own room, during visits, and during communication with friends and family as a nursing home resident. In addition, you can also safeguard your money and other property as per New York law.

You also have the right to manage your finances, medications, and other needs independently. If you or a judge has given this right to someone else, they can do so on your behalf.

Free From Abuse and Neglect

The law protects you from verbal, physical, sexual, and emotional abuse if you live in a nursing home. You should always feel safe and understood in your facility, as caregivers are responsible for listening to you and meeting your needs. Caregivers should never make you feel neglected or trapped either. If they do, they are violating your rights.


While you live in your nursing home facility, you have the right to leave at any point for any reason. Whether you want to leave for an overnight stay with a family member or leave permanently, New York law allows you to do so. While nursing homes do have their own policies on leaves of absence, these policies cannot prevent you from exercising your right to leave the facility.

Seeking Help

According to New York’s bill of rights for nursing home residents, your facility must have an easy-to-use complaint system that allows you to express any concerns. You also have the right to speak to a lawyer when your rights are violated or if you have any worries about your living situation.

Speak With a New York Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer at Dall & Marino, LLP

When you live in a nursing home, you rely on your caregivers to know and honor your rights and keep you safe. When caregivers break this trust, you may want to contact a nursing home abuse lawyer who will help you with all aspects of your case. We may be able to support you by gathering evidence, understanding your case’s worth, filing your claim on time, and taking your case to court.

At Dalli & Marino, LLP, our professional legal team has proudly provided New York with award-winning services for over 25 years. Our innovative and client-focused approach may be able to help you seek justice and recover damages. We also speak Spanish, so many communities can utilize our services. Give us a call at (888) 465-8790 or fill out our contact form to schedule a free consultation.

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