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Screening Nursing Home Cases: Doing Your Best Work and Knowing When to Say No

(263 reviews)

Produced on July 11, 2019

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$ 89 Personal Injury and Negligence and Elder In Stock
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Course Information

Time 1h 1m
Difficulty Intermediate
Topics covered in this course: Personal Injury and Negligence Elder

Course Description

Nursing home litigation can contemporaneously be one of the most satisfying and challenging areas of consumer advocacy. These are extraordinarily time consuming and expensive claims to prosecute. One bad case can monopolize a practice and drain its line of credit. Worse, a poorly chosen claim can soil a practitioner’s reputation in this very small legal community – and in turn, harm one’s other clients at the negotiation table.

More than in many other fields, an unsupportable nursing home case can look meritorious and appealing but, in this field, reputation and credibility are everything. Strong cases, and knowing what they are, is a necessary foundation of any practice, while weak cases will cause it to crumble. This program will demonstrate the most effective strategies in weeding through intakes and building a successful nursing home practice.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Analyze the basic principles of nursing home litigation
  2. Identify the foundational claims that can support a nursing home case
  3. Avoid hitting statutes of limitations, which can be a moving target
  4. Discuss the critical importance of the victim’s family
  5. Review the components of the screening and review process
  6. Estimate the true cost of properly litigating a nursing home case
  7. Address liens and their impact upon litigation
  8. Know when and how to say no, ethically and compassionately

Credit Information

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David Cohen

Cohen Abuse Analytics Law, LLC

Certified by the Supreme Court of New Jersey as a Civil Trial Attorney.  

Decades of legal advocacy for consumers in obtaining nursing home negligence settlements and litigation for those harmed by Corporate Abuse Committed by the Nursing Home Industry.

Litigation Support and Consultation for attorneys litigating against the Long Term Care Industry. Register for one of Cohen's Continuing Legal Education Programs on Nursing Home Litigation - 93 minutes.

Advocacy for Consumers through third-party tort litigation and legal malpractice lawsuits who have been harmed by excessive divorce costs and other harms resulting from malpractice and Divorce Attorney Billing Abuse.

Specialized Client Representation and Attorney Instruction:

Elder Abuse and Assisted Living Facility Litigation

Group Homes

Hospital Abuse


Member, New Jersey State Bar Association

Past Chair of Public Education, Mercer County Bar Association

Past Chair of the National Nursing Home Litigation Group of the American Association for Justice 

Past National Chair, American Association for Justice – Sections and Litigation Group Coordination Committee

Chair of over 35 National and State level instructional attorney seminars on Nursing Home Litigation through the American Association for Justice, The New Jersey Association for Justice, The New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education - and others.


New Jersey

United States District Court, District of New Jersey

United States Court of Appeals, Third Circuit


J.D., Rutgers University School of Law – Camden, 1989

B.A., Economics and Philosophy; George Washington University, 1986



Co‑counsel on trial team generating the largest nursing home verdict in New Jersey history, Dwyer v. Harborview – in the amount of 13.2 million dollars.  

After hearing 7 weeks of evidence and witnesses, which included photographs of stage IV pressure ulcers (bedsores), evidence of lethal levels of nutritional deprivation, plaintiff’s contentions of falsifications in the medical record and plaintiff’s contentions of inadequate staffing and care, the jury returned with the largest verdict in Hudson County history. Immediately following the verdict, numerous post-verdict filings were made by both the plaintiff and the defense. Over one year after the verdict, the trial judge determined that it had given improper instructions to the jury, as a consequence of the opinions expressed in the text of an unrelated decision released on a different case (that had not been released until nearly a year after this verdict). However, the content of the instructions at issue in Dwyer were agreed upon by Plaintiff, the defense and the Court itself. The Court ordered the parties to re-try the case. Soon, the case found its way before the Appellate Division (a higher-level court), with Plaintiff’s contention that the trial court’s instructions were proper, were wholly in line with the as-yet unreleased and unrelated decision and were unassailable by virtue of the fact that they were acceded to by the defense. 

For those reasons, Plaintiff’s filing with the Appellate Division demanded that the $13,200,00 verdict remain intact. 

While that issue was pending in the appellate court, the case resolved confidentially for an undisclosed sum. 

The verdict was the subject of an intense two-day attorney instructional seminar in Washington, DC, co-chaired by Cohen, numerous local and national articles, received coverage on the front page of the New York Times and remains the largest nursing home verdict in New Jersey History.


Worked directly with the United States Department of Justice on the matter of United States v. Mercer County. This is the only CRIPA (Civil Rights of Institutionalized Persons) claim ever brought by the United States Government against a New Jersey Nursing Home. Cohen worked closely with both investigators and the U.S. Attorney’s Office - on a confidential basis prior to release of findings - in uncovering sub‑standard conditions at a facility known then as the Mercer County Geriatric Center. The coordinated effort resulted in not only a lawsuit filed by the United States against Mercer County Geriatric Center, but additionally the appointment of significant oversight – leading to higher quality care for the residents at that facility.  


Sarah M.

Thank you for the practical considerations when choosing to or not pursue a nursing home case. Thank you for the practical considerations regarding families!

Christopher D.

Excellent practical advice

Charlene L.

Great information, great insight, well presented.

Diane B.

This is the best course on Lawline.

Ruth D.

This was an excellent presentation with extensive practical and substantive legal information.

terry r.

Good organized, clear concise presenter

Teige W.

Fantastic speaker, very informative

Andrew A.

Very Good Course

Opal B.

Very informative course offering practical advice that only an experienced practitioner would know. Very timely, too, given the disproportionate number of COVID-19 deaths that have occurred in nursing homes, and are likely to trigger a rash of lawsuits.

Andrew G.

Excellent speaker, very clear

Mark S.

Excellent lecturer.

Gary G.

Best and most relevant of the 3 courses I have taken thus far this year

Julie A. B.

Covers basic principles of nursing home litigation as well as the case screening and review process with practice tips punctuated throughout program.

Gregory N.

well done !!

Matthew C. L.

The presentation was very good. The hour was not spent reading a prepared presentation, but a discussion. GOOD

Brett B.

This was the best CLE I have viewed on Lawline. The presenter did an outstanding job covering the subject matter from all aspects and sharing very valuable practical insight from his years of experience in a very specialized area.

kim h.



Great seminar! and very knowledgeable attorney in this area.

Michael V.

Great presentation. The information is relevant to no only screening nursing home cases, but has helpful practical tips that can be applied to screening other cases that come into your office.

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