Sacramento Jury Awards $23 Million in Damages Against Assisted-Living Giant

In a recent lawsuit filed against assisted-living giant Emeritus, attorneys alleged that profits were more important to the company than adequate care. According to recent reports, the jury agreed, and found that the company would have to pay out $23 million in punitive damages.

The lawsuit centered around the death of an 81-year-old woman. Emeritus resident Joan Boice suffered from advanced dementia. Although she was too physically debilitated for the care that an Emeritus facility offered, they accepted her nonetheless. After her acceptance, she was β€œleft … at the mercy of a few unqualified, untrained, and overburdened caregivers, with predictable, and tragic, results.”

Boice developed multiple, deep pressure wounds while living in the memory-care unit of Emeritus at Emerald Hills. She was then transferred to a skilled nursing facility where she received hospice care. She died just ten weeks later.

The jury found that management for Emeritus was responsible for the elder abuse and neglect that was occurring in its homes. The stunning verdict — $22,963,943.81 to be exact – is the second largest punitive damage award to be handed down in California last year.

Emeritus is the largest provider of assisted-living facilities, which provide residents with daily assistance but do not provide the intensive personal care that a nursing home would.

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