The director of a care home in Nottingham has become the first in England to be convicted of Corporate Manslaughter. The conviction of Yousef Khan, director of Autumn Grange Care Home in Nottingham, came following the death of one of the home’s residents in November 2012.

Ivy Atkin, who suffered from dementia, died shortly after being removed from Autumn Grange Care Home.

Following Mrs Atkin’s death, the Care Quality Commission inspected the home and found multiple examples of neglectful care resulting in the remaining residents immediately being removed and rehoused. The care home manager, Mohammed Khan, also pleaded guilty to health and safety offences.

Over the coming years there will be a significant increase in the number of us living in care homes. We have an aging population. Looking after the elderly and infirm is a rapidly growing market.

The owners of care homes will know that there are profits to be made in this sector but equally the work comes with a high level of responsibility. Residents are often frail or infirm and need high levels of care.

At Farleys we have a department that specialises in Inquest work. We are regularly asked to represent both the families of people who have died in care homes and also the owners of these establishments.

The unfortunate case of Ivy Atkin emphasises how important it will be in the future to ensure that those running care homes have the best possible representation, particularly at Inquests. Following a death in a nursing home a Coroner will often decide to hold an Inquest into the circumstances surrounding the death when the care provided will be scrutinised. Care home owners must be prepared to employ specialist teams to represent them at these Coronial Hearings. There has been an increase of claims brought on behalf of the deceased and their families, particularly under the Human Rights Act and the case of Ivy Atkin now shows that not only may care home owners face damages claims but there may now also be serious criminal repercussions, in this case resulting in a conviction for Corporate Manslaughter.

If you need any help or advice in relation to an Inquest either as the family member of the deceased or as someone involved with a care home please do not hesitate to contact an inquest solicitor from our specialist team.