On March 25, 2020, New York state lawmakers imposed an immunity provision on nursing homes that could be removed, which prevented healthcare workers and families of nursing home residents from filing lawsuits.
A Closer Look at the March Order
Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the immunity provision, which prevented nursing homes from denying COVID-positive patients discharged from hospitals while leaving healthcare workers and facility residents vulnerable to infection without a means to recover compensation. Attorney General Letitia James reports that more than 9,000 nursing home deaths have occurred over the course of the pandemic. The families directly impacted by this order prior to its lift at the end of the summer have not been able to recover damages due to nursing home negligence even after buzzing criticism.
Policymakers Reviewing Options to Take Action
Originally aimed at protecting nursing homes from a rush of lawsuits that could drive them to financial ruin, some lawmakers acknowledge how problematic the original order was. Assemblyman Ron Kim notes that it “was a terrible mistake” and put forth the suggestion that a compensation fund endowed by nursing homes and the state could help victims. While Governor Cuomo has not yet reviewed the proposal to dissolve nursing home immunity and currently backs the overall initial approach, it’s clear that other lawmakers, like Kim, will continue to voice the need for both retroactive justice and further protections for citizens and workers.
Build Your Case With Leav & Steinberg
With the potential for nursing home immunity to shift, it’s crucial that the rights of the New York workers are considered and protected. Since our founding, Leav & Steinberg LLP has helped protect the rights of New York citizens across a range of practice areas and community involvement. Contact our legal team today to request a free consultation for a possible nursing home negligence case and learn how changes to immunity may qualify you or your loved one for compensation.