A Nashville Judge has ruled that families who lost loved ones in a nursing home fire can pursue a punitive damage claim against the company that owned the facility for its alleged disregard of fire safety training and failures of the facility’s employees on the night the fire occurred. It is alleged that the nursing home corporation, National Health care Corp. falsified fire drill reports and appointed an untrained maintenance man to oversee fire safety training at the facility, leaving employees without the ability to handle the crisis.
This case demonstrates the continued need to allow punitive damages in cases of reckless actions and gross negligence. If a jury determines that these nursing home deaths resulted from such acts they can punish the nursing home accordingly. Nursing Home Neglect cases need this punitive tool to ensure the industry operates properly.