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Charleston WV Personal Injury Law Blog

Does West Virginia nursing homes do employee background checks?

Having the right direct care staff in a medical facility that provides care to elders is one of the best ways to prevent nursing home neglect and abuse. Unfortunately, the care provider industry often attracts the wrong type of personnel, resulting in neglect or even abuse.

Like other states, West Virginia does have a program in place to prevent the hiring of unqualified individuals in a long-term care facility. The intent of the program is to protect patients from abuse, neglect and even financial exploitation. The program requires employers in nursing homes and other long-term care organizations to conduct background checks on potential employees who will have direct access to patients.

Discrimination case against Catholic hospital awaits ruling

Same-sex marriage has been legal in West Virginia since October 2014. However, a West Virginia nurse says that her employer, Huntington's St. Mary's Medical Center, refused to allow her to add her spouse to her employer-sponsored health insurance plan after they married in 2015.

The woman, who filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission earlier this year, says that the benefits coordinator literally "took the paperwork out of my hands" after she told her the spouse she was adding to her plan was a woman. She says she was told that her spouse couldn't be on her plan because the hospital is Catholic. A spouse, under hospital policy, was defined as a "person of the opposite sex who is a husband or wife."

A brain injury can change your life forever

If you or a loved one suffers a brain injury, it's important to remember one thing: You never know what the future will bring.

While some people are able to fully recover from a brain injury, others find that their life has changed forever. Due to the fact that a brain injury can be so serious, it often calls for advanced treatment and therapy for the rest of a person's life.

Wrongful termination and the important roles a lawyer fills

If you have been a part of the West Virginia workforce for any length of time, you have probably heard the term "employment at will." It is an important doctrine that enables either party in a working relationship to terminate the employment for any cause or for no cause at all. What you need to know, however, is that you cannot be terminated if the termination violates the law.

For terminated employees, a number of questions typically arise after being fired from a job. They include: Why was I fired? Was the termination legal? Is there anything I can do if it was a wrongful termination? Because of the employment at will doctrine, many people assume that nothing can be done. Making a successful wrongful termination claim can be challenging, but it is far from impossible.

Hydroplane truck accident takes 1 life in West Virginia

A man from Washington has passed away after being involved in an accident in West Virginia. All told, four cars were involved in the wreck, but it appears that only one person was killed.

The accident happened when rain had slicked down the surface of Interstate 70 and pooled up in places. Reports indicate that a truck hit one of those pools of water at a high enough rate of speed for it to hydroplane. This sent it out of control, it went up and over the median, and it slammed into the other vehicles.

How can employers prevent workplace sexual harassment?

As an employee, you expect to have access to a safe work environment. Even so, you know that something could go wrong in the future. For example, you could become the victim of sexual harassment.

From an employer perspective, there are many things a company can do to help prevent workplace sexual harassment:

3 dead, 5 injured in tragic accident involving church van

An accident involving a church van and a box truck on Interstate 79 in Harrison County, West Virginia, claimed the lives of three people and sent another five people to the hospital.

The accident occurred as the church van was en route to the "Festival of Life" event, which is a two-week long evangelistic event in Clarksburg, West Virginia. It is hosted by four churches in the area and is known to attract hundreds of participants.

Employers are increasingly buying harassment insurance

We've come a long way since the "Mad Men" days when sexual harassment was rampant in many workplaces, and women (and men) had little if any recourse if they were being hit on or worse in the office.

Sexual harassment allegations today can bring down powerful executives. We saw that recently when Fox News chief Roger Ailes resigned (albeit without admitting wrongdoing and with a hefty $40 million exit deal) after a lawsuit by former anchor Gretchen Carlson brought out allegations from other women who had worked for him.

Do you know how to handle a car accident?

Imagine this scenario: You're driving down the road in a cautious manner. And then something happens. Another driver makes a mistake and you're suddenly involved in a car accident. Regardless of the details surrounding the accident, there are a few key steps you need to take.

First off, move to a safe area if possible. If you can't do this, such as because you're injured, it's best to stay put. You don't want to do anything that could cause greater damage.

Understanding bedsores in a nursing home environment

Many West Virginia families depend on nursing homes to provide care and nurturing for elderly loved ones. Learning to trust that the staff of these facilities will take proper care of a family member is not always easy. Media reports of nursing home neglect and abuse can exacerbate this already difficult process. One way that you can ease your mind about the nursing home you have chosen is to learn about a common sign of abuse or neglect: bedsores.

In most cases, bedsores are entirely preventable and if they do begin to occur, swift treatment can make all the difference. Bedsores occur in patients who have limited mobility. They happen because lying or sitting in the same position for prolonged periods puts pressure on certain areas of the body. These areas include the buttocks, hips, tailbone and lower back. They can also appear around the patient's ankles, feet and heels when left in a wheelchair for too long.

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