Law Street Media

Nursing Home Accused of Diverting Funding to Detriment of Patients

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Plaintiffs Adam and Cornell Every and Hercilia Hurtado filed suit separately on Monday in Louisiana state court against defendants Louisiana Health Care Consultants LLC (LHCC), Bob G. Dean Jr., and Maison De Ville Nursing Home of Harvey LLC (Maison De Ville Nursing Home) (collectively, defendants). The class action petitions for damages and injunctive relief allege that the defendants “siphoned funds and assets away from the direct care givers at the facility named herein under the guise of management and administrative fee expenses which were ‘related-party transactions.’”

LHCC manages defendant Maison De Ville Nursing Home, while Dean owns and directs both LHCC and Maison De Ville Nursing Home. Upon admission to the Maison De Ville Nursing Home, the plaintiffs say, patients like the plaintiffs were given a resident bill of rights, which included rights that the defendants were supposed to adhere to. Included in the resident bill of rights were provisions that gave patients “the right to receive adequate and appropriate health care and protective and support services,” and “the right to be free from mental and physical abuse,” among other expected rights.

As a licensed nursing facility, the defendants were required by law to provide adequate and qualified staff that would aspire to “attain or maintain the highest practicable physical, mental, and psychosocial well-being of each resident.”

Despite the aforementioned statutory obligations, the plaintiffs assert that the defendants “did not devote sufficient financial resources to the proper operation of the skilled nursing facility” and “did not devote sufficient financial resources to protect the health and safety of residents and ensure resident rights were not violated.” Rather, the defendants allegedly diverted those financial resources and used them to “create ill-begotten profits.”

Underfunding at the nursing home led to understaffing so severe that the amount of time provided for each type of nursing care (licensed nurse staff hours, registered nurse care, and nurse aide hours) was well below the national average, according to the plaintiff’s complaint. Due to this problem, the facility was given the lowest possible rating by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which the plaintiffs argue is a direct result of the defendants continually diverting of profits intended for the facility to themselves.

The misconduct that the defendants engaged in led the plaintiffs to experience “suffering; past, present, and future emotional pain and mental distress; loss of enjoyment of life,” and more.

The plaintiffs are seeking class certification for all other individuals similarly situated who suffered similar injuries or damages due to the misconduct of the defendant. The complaint cites a breach of statutory duties and violations of the defendant’s own resident bill of rights. In addition to class certification, the plaintiffs are seeking special and general damages, statutory penalties, injunctive relief, litigation fees, and any other relief deemed necessary by the Court.

The plaintiffs are represented by Huber Thomas & Marcelle.

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