Q: When an experienced elder abuse attorney like you is pursuing someone for committing elder abuse, is there insurance?
There might be an insurance company that has agreed to defend or indemnify an individual accused of neglect or abuse. The neglect is more likely to have coverage insofar as it is more of a negligent act. Most commercial general liability or liability policies cover negligent acts and have specific exclusions for intentional acts.
If there is an allegation of abuse, dependent on the facts and circumstances, the insurance company may not defend the accused abuser, saying that the individual engaged in an intentional act.
It depends on who you are suing as well. For example, if you are suing a home care corporation that is providing the services, that corporation very likely will have liability insurance to cover the acts of error and omission of its employees. Similarly, a nursing home would most likely have an insurance policy covering instances of abuse by its employees.
Q: Is there a possibility that the homeowner’s policy would cover the elder abuse negligence?
Yes. If you are suing a family member, the homeowner’s policy could be triggered to provide a defense, depending on the allegations of the complaint and whether that person has a homeowner’s policy.
Q: Under those circumstances, would you argue elder neglect rather than elder abuse to keep the insurance company involved in the case?
It depends on the circumstances and the facts, but if there is factual support for the claims of negligence and neglect, then we would definitely bring those points.