ClickCease
Follow the latest on how New York State is tackling COVID-19 in nursing homes >> Learn more
Available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week    |   Hablamos Espanol

When Can a Nursing Home Be Liable for a Virus Outbreak?

doctor give a consultation to elderly manIn the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, nursing homes have been thrust into the spotlight as potential hotspots for outbreaks. With elderly populations and immunocompromised residents vulnerable to infection, these facilities are under immense pressure to ensure that their staff members adhere to strict health protocols and safety precautions. But what happens when a virus outbreak does occur? When can a nursing home be held liable for an outbreak?

In the event that your loved one is seriously injured or dies as a result of a nursing home virus outbreak, contact Dalli & Marino, LLP to discuss your potential legal case. We have expertise in nursing home abuse and neglect cases and can help you determine your next legal steps after an incident in a nursing home.

Can Nursing Homes Be Held Liable for Virus Outbreaks?

The answer depends on multiple factors, including whether or not the facility has taken adequate preventative measures, such as implementing consistent sanitizing protocols and adhering to social distancing guidelines. 

If these safeguards fail to protect residents and staff from infection, then it may be reasonable to hold the nursing home responsible for any damages sustained during the outbreak. It’s important to remember that outbreaks can happen in any type of facility, so there is no single answer as to when a nursing home can be held liable.

Nursing Homes Have a Duty to Protect Residents

Nursing homes must take extra precautionary steps due to their specific role in society. They are entrusted with providing care and support for some of the most vulnerable members of our population, most of which have comparatively weaker immune systems than younger individuals. This makes them more susceptible to viruses like COVID-19, making it all the more important for nursing homes to take additional steps toward protecting both residents and staff from potential infection.

Additionally, many states have enacted mandatory standards for long-term care facilities that must be met in order for a nursing home to remain open. These rules vary by state but generally include things such as ensuring proper ventilation systems are in place, providing adequate staffing levels at all times, performing daily health screenings on all residents and visitors entering the building, and maintaining separate areas where those who test positive for a virus can be quarantined. 

When a nursing home fails to do its part, it puts residents at risk. If residents become sick with a virus without the proper precautions in place, the nursing home may be found liable.

When Nursing Homes Fail to Protect Residents from Viruses

If it is found that a particular facility has failed to adhere to these regulatory requirements or take sufficient preventative measures against potential virus transmissions within their walls, they may face legal action if an outbreak occurs as a result of their negligence. If a facility is found to have breached relevant laws or regulations concerning virus transmission prevention, it may be liable for civil damages or even criminal charges depending on the severity of the breach. 

In addition, the facility may also be subject to government sanctions such as fines or closure orders. If an outbreak does occur due to a facility’s negligence, then they may also be held liable for any resulting illnesses and deaths. 

Schedule a Consultation with New York Nursing Home Abuse Lawyers

If proper precautions aren’t taken, then a nursing home may find itself liable for any damages resulting from an incident involving the spread of viruses at its facilities. When nursing home residents get seriously sick or injured as a result of viruses, the home can be held responsible for any harm caused.

If you or someone you love has been affected by a virus outbreak at a nursing home, then you may be entitled to compensation. Contact our experienced New York nursing home abuse lawyers at Dalli & Marino, LLP today to schedule a free consultation and discuss your legal options. We can assess the facts of your case and determine if filing a claim is in your best interest. Contact us online or call us at 888-465-8790 for a consultation to discuss your case. We also speak Spanish.


3010 Eastchester Rd, Bronx, NY 10469
516-407-8243

66-50 Myrtle Ave, Queens, NY 11385
718-568-5467