Articles Posted in Levin & Perconti in the News

Aperion Care Racked Up $367,000 in Fines For 2019 Nursing Home Violations

In 2019, one Illinois nursing home chain, branded under the Aperion Care name, was fined nearly $367,000 by the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) in response to failing to correct serious deficiencies in care and safety of its residents. Aperion Care has 35 Illinois facilities, the majority of which have only one-of-five-star ratings by Medicare.

Most recently, Aperion made a $6 million offer to take over Rock Island’s Hope Creek Care Center. But Aperion’s reputation and questionable level of care residents may receive has alarmed both community and county board members. With a quick review through the quarterly violation reports for Illinois nursing facilities, courtesy of IDPH, it easy to identify why these Aperion Care facilities are fined so often, and also validate the concerns of the Rock Island community.

Nationally Respected Attorneys

Three Illinois Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Cases That Gained National Attention in 2019

Levin & Perconti is a nationally renowned law firm concentrating in all types of nursing home abuse and neglect claims as well as personal injury, medical malpractice, and wrongful death lawsuits. The firm’s founding partners, Steve Levin and John Perconti were among the first nursing home lawyers in Illinois and are highly regarded among their peers and adversaries for their outstanding work on behalf of victims of abuse and neglect.

Today, the Chicago based firm stands behind three decades of winning experience in defending residents who have had their rights violated and become injured while under the care of others. This is a brief review of three nursing home abuse and neglect cases represented by Levin & Perconti lawyers that made national and local news headlines in 2019.

Steve Levin

Legislation Banning Arbitration in Nursing Homes Protects Residents’ Access to Justice

by Steven M. Levin, as published in the Chicago Tribune

Every day, families nationwide face the difficult task of finding a suitable long-term care facility for their aging loved ones. This decision is often made in the middle of a crisis, and people feel pressured to get through the admissions process quickly to secure a spot for their elderly relative.

nursing home neglect
Negligence Led To 66-Year-Old’s Death in Chicago Nursing Home

Levin & Perconti filed a lawsuit on Tuesday, October 29 on behalf of the family of Jaime Hernandez. Mr. Hernandez tragically bled to death at his west suburban nursing home after receiving a kidney transplant just one month earlier. Before his unexpected and preventable death, doctors were pleased with the man’s recovery and family members were excited for Mr. Hernandez’s future after waiting nearly seven years for his new kidney.

According to the lawsuit, staff at Berkshire Nursing & Rehab Center LLC at the Aperion Care facility located at 8200 Roosevelt Road in Forest Park failed to perform scheduled checks on Mr. Hernandez to prevent bleeding in the arm used for his dialysis treatments. The family is seeking monetary damages for 17 different care failures and negligence.

Margeret Black

Catching up with Levin & Perconti Attorney Margaret Battersby Black, 40 Under 40’s Class of 2011.

Levin & Perconti’s Margaret Battersby Black was named to the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin’s 40 Under 40 List in 2011. 40 Under 40 is a highly selective honor process that recognizes outstanding attorneys from across Illinois. Since then, she has posted a series of high-profile, professional achievements that we wish to recognize.

The 39-year-old plaintiff’s attorney, who is also the parent of two young children alongside her husband Jeff, joined Levin & Perconti as a law clerk in 2006, was promoted to associate attorney in 2008 and named Partner in 2014. Margaret has since led a run of successful personal injury cases, as well as notable settlements involving falls, pressure sores and medication errors on behalf of individuals and families in lawsuits related to nursing home abuse and negligence, including but not limited to:

dementia patients

Dementia Residents Are Easy Targets for Nursing Home Abusers and Bullies

For nursing home residents with dementia, a form of Alzheimer’s, daily care is largely dependent on others. Nursing home workers of many types assist these patients in managing daily living activities such as bathing, dressing, and eating, exercising, managing their medications, and even overseeing finances. Dementia patients require extra attention and guided support as they are naturally prone to higher personal injury rates, infection, and falls but also more likely to become a victim of abuse and neglect, have their privacy violated and also be bullied by both nursing home workers and other residents. All residents, no matter what their situation, have the right to privacy, dignity, respect, and freedom. They should be treated with consideration and be free from all types of mental and physical abuse.

It’s important to remember that nursing homes must meet these federal residents’ rights requirements to continue participation in Medicare or Medicaid. If not, they must be held accountable.

nursing home abuse

What To Do If You See A Nursing Home Resident’s Rights Being Violated On Social Media 

Nursing home employees are crucial in helping identify violators of the Illinois Nursing Home Care Act, including the reporting of other workers who choose to document these violations on personal Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Snapchat accounts or through private text messages. A recent example of this ‘social showcase of abuse’ came through Levin & Perconti’s representation of a 91-year-old woman who was taunted, and her privacy violated by two care aides formerly employed by Abington of Glenview Nursing Home in Glenview. The workers, Brayan Cortez and Jamie Montesa, taunted Margaret Collins, an elderly resident with dementia and then shared their abusive behavior within their community of followers on Snapchat. It was a former employee – still connected to the workers via the social network – who saw the video and made the right choice to alert the resident’s family of it.

At Levin & Perconti, we recognize and applaud the many overworked and underpaid care workers who ultimately save lives by reporting their co-workers, managers, and even sometimes their friends who choose to disregard the care, privacy, and treatment of nursing home residents in Illinois. But we also know there are many more workers afraid to report these incidents in fear of retaliatory actions made against their careers by the nursing home industry. The Illinois Nursing Home Care Act & Illinois Whistleblower Act protects all workers from retaliation for reporting or threatening to report a violation of the law or regulation concerning the care and privacy of nursing home residents.

Margaret Battersby Black appears on Fox & Friends with her client Joan Biedel, whose mother is the subject of a nursing home abuse case that has gotten national attention.

Nursing home resident Margaret Collins, a 91 year old woman with dementia, was the subject of repeated harassment from two nursing home employees. The upsetting viral video has caused a backlash of anger against elder abuse and an outpouring of support for Margaret Collins and her family.

Chicago News – CBS 2 News at 10:00 covers the story of Margaret Collins.

Nursing home resident Margaret Collins, a 91 year old woman with dementia, was the subject of repeated harassment from two nursing home employees. The upsetting viral video has caused a backlash of anger against elder abuse and an outpouring of support for Margaret Collins and her family.

nursing home abuse and neglect attorneys

Two partners talk about going from student to teacher

This piece was originally published in the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin on August 1, 2019.

By Margaret Battersby Black and Michael F. Bonamarte IV

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