Elderly abuse can take on many forms, such as neglect, abandonment, and emotional, financial, sexual, and physical abuse. A systematic review from the AASC illustrates that ten percent of abuse reported relates to the elderly population. Elder abuse occurs in various places, such as in the victims’ own homes by their families, in strangers’ homes, and in nursing homes by caregivers, other residents, and adult staff members.
Be vigilant! As citizens, you can do your bit to care for the rights of the elderly. Here are a few tips to detect elder abuse:
Keep a watchful eye on those elderly people who look frail and fragile. In terms of clinical practice, you can identify them by their deteriorating health, dirty environment, bad odor, and constant wearing of dirty clothes. These victims display neglect and need care. If the victim lives at home, they need to be removed from their abusive or neglectful family members and transferred to a safe environment where there are older adults who will curtail the abuse.
An inspection of the elderly’s financial circumstances should be done regularly, as this can be one of the signs of abuse. If the review reveals unusual purchases and withdrawals from the victims’ bank account or that essential utilities have been disconnected, and bills are unpaid. Still, the money is withdrawn, the number one suspects are usually the victim’s children. Share the news of the suspected abuse with other family members so that you can take action. The perpetrator can be sued for financial abuse and theft.
Signs of physical abuse include scratching or pinching marks accompanied by visible injuries, sores, cuts, scars, or broken arms or limbs. Remove the adult from the home and admit the victim as a patient in one of many nursing homes to ensure the prevention of further abuse. You need to do everything in your power to make sure this doesn’t happen again.
If an elderly person shows signs of changed behavior; for example, they are withdrawn, humiliated, or cannot adequately explain what happened to them, they are probably being emotionally abused. Find another home and institute legal proceedings against those living with the elderly person or the caregiver.
When you visit an elderly person at a nursing home and notice injuries or bleeding to the genitalia or injuries to the breasts, this is a sign of sexual exploitation. You need to investigate and report the matter to the management of the elderly home immediately.
Demand that management responds with a written explanation as this news affects others in the nursing home and has implications for other residents. Do not be silent!
The following people are allowed to file an elder abuse lawsuit on behalf of a loved one:
Under certain circumstances, the legal heirs may also be able to sue.
When you see signs of abuse, irrespective of the different types of abuse, you have to report the matter to an emergency department or adult protective services. You may also file a personal injury case with a knowledgeable attorney.
If you or a loved one has been the victim of elder abuse, the compassionate and experienced attorneys at Ehline Law Firm are here to help! Contact us today at 833 LETS-SUE for a free consultation.
Michael is a managing partner at the nationwide Ehline Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, APLC. He’s an inactive Marine and became a lawyer in the California State Bar Law Office Study Program, later receiving his J.D. from UWLA School of Law. Michael has won some of the world’s largest motorcycle accident settlements.