“I wanted to BE something good in the world, to DO something that effects change, and being a lawyer was the best way I thought I could achieve that. Even when I was a young girl, lawyers always fascinated me. The idea that you could stand up for somebody else and help them through careful strategy and a deep understanding and knowledge of the law – that spoke to me then, and it’s something that’s stayed with me. Being a lawyer is how I know I can help the most people and do the most good.”
- Elizabeth Todd
Attorney Elizabeth Todd
Elizabeth Todd has always been called to the practice of law. She recalls always wanting to be a lawyer, even as a seven-year old who didn’t fully grasp everything the profession entails. Now, with more than 20 years of experience, she’s a fierce advocate and ally for some of the most vulnerable people in our society – the frail elderly.
It all started with Farrin’s own famed personal injury litigator, Hoyt Tessener. Back in 2000, Hoyt was Elizabeth’s supervising partner at another law firm. Hoyt wanted to start building a nursing home practice, and Elizabeth took on that challenge. Back then, and even now, there are few attorneys who focus their practice entirely on nursing home and assisted living negligence, and that is one reason we have a troubled system that sees some for-profit nursing homes preying on the aged and their families.
Hoyt Tessener said, “I am very excited to work with Elizabeth again. She is a highly respected authority on nursing home cases. The state of North Carolina makes it difficult to hold Nursing Homes accountable for their actions, so it takes a creative mind, hard work, and determination to handle these cases. Elizabeth has all of these qualities and more. Her abilities, along with our technology, will allow us to help many who cannot help themselves, across North Carolina and beyond.”
“An Unchecked System”
The majority of nursing homes and assisted living facilities in the U.S. are for-profit, which means that millions of Americans are paying good money into private pockets – either through direct payments, or through every worker’s Medicare taxes – with the expectation that our vulnerable elderly will get the quality care they need and deserve. Unfortunately, this is not always the case, and Elizabeth works to keep them accountable.
Making a Marked Difference in the Nursing Home and Assisted Living Industry
Elizabeth recalls representing a client whose mother was placed in a North Carolina nursing home facility. The client wanted to sue the nursing home because every time they visited their mother, the facilities reeked of urine and feces, there was never any staff, people were leaning out of their wheelchairs, and overall, they described it as a “hellish” facility. There was not enough staff in the facility, and their mother had an avoidable injury that led to her death. With Elizabeth’s lead, the client sued the facility and won.1
The client called Elizabeth back after a year to tell her that now their mother-in-law had to go to the same facility, and the difference was night and day. The client reported that the facility was now clean, more than adequately staffed, and the residents looked like they were being taken care of well.1
- "NPR: Nursing Home Critics Say COVID-19 Immunity Laws Are Just A Free Pass For Neglect"
- "ProPublica: The Nursing Home Didn’t Send Her to the Hospital, and She Died"
- "WECT: Shuttered assisted living facility had ‘rare’ pattern of zero-star ratings"
- James Scott Farrin Named to 2020 Edition of "U.S. News - Best Lawyers" 'Best Law Firms' List3
- 12 Red Flags That Could Signal Nursing Home Sexual Abuse
For legal reasons and client confidentiality, reviews have been slightly edited to remove identifying information and correct typos.
3For more information about the standards of inclusion for “U.S. News – Best Lawyers” ‘Best Law Firms’ list, please visit https://bestlawfirms.usnews.com/.