Elderly abuse is defined as an intentional, negligent act by a caregiver or any other person that deliberately hurts or puts at serious risk a vulnerable adult person. The abuser is breaking the law and can be charged with a criminal offense. If you notice abuse, the best thing to do is contact elderly abuse lawyers.
In most cases, the abuser is related to the older adult; the victims are usually dependent on the abuser (for shelter, personal care, companionship, and even food).
Neglect is the most common type of elder abuse. A neglected older person shows signs that they are not getting the needed care; they may look deteriorated, with signs of physical abuse (bruises), dirty, can smell, or look like they haven’t eaten properly in a while.
Their home can give signs of neglect (dirty rooms, unwashed dishes, no food in the fridge).
Some abusers are not letting the elderly leave their homes, cut their communication with other people (through the phone or in-person).
If you believe that an elderly person is neglected, find a way to talk to them in private. Maybe you can offer them help. Call the police if you believe the safety of the elderly person is in danger.
In most cases, the victim of physical abuse will deny it out of fear. However, noticing physical abuse can indicate that something is going on. Bruises, scars, or broken bones are a sure sign that the older adult has been going through physical abuse.
Also, physical abuse can be in the form of improper medicine or forbidding the person to see their medical care provider.
Such cases are very complex for the victim. They often refuse to report the violence, because the abuser is often their spouse, child, grandchild, and they are often dependent on them (financially, they live together, or get most of the care from the abuser).
Psychological and Emotional Abuse
Emotional and psychological abuse is another form of abuse. This is the hardest for detection because it occurs behind closed doors and has no physical signs for it. The victims are usually ashamed or scared to tell anyone.
If someone is close to the victim, they may notice that the elderly person is acting differently; they may act sad, quiet, or withdrawn from their usual activities.
Often, the caregiver (spouse, child, adult grandchild, or caregiver in an elderly home) is the abuser – they humiliate or offend the victim.
Sexual Abuse and Domestic Violence
Unfortunately, elderly are not protected from sexual abuse as well. They often don’t report sexual abuse because they are ashamed, scared of the abuser who is often their caregiver and because they do not know where to seek help for their situation.
Domestic abuse can be economical, psychological, and emotional and physical abuse. These four are often occurring at once and are done by their family members who are caregivers at the same time.
Financial exploitation is a very common type of elderly abuse. Many elderly people have savings and social security, their own homes, and pensions. This is a reason for financial exploitation by their trusted caregivers and family members.
The elderly victim is scared and heartbroken, ashamed, and they feel as if they cannot report this because they fear they will lose their caregiver or lost touch with their family members.
Often, they don’t want to report the abuser because they don’t want their caregiver or family member to end up in trouble.
There are elderly people who are financially exploited by strangers; they are also scared and embarrassed about what happened to them, which is why they never report.
They have lost money and may or may not have experienced physical and emotional abuse or were threatened by the abuser.
Consult the Elderly Abuse Lawyers at Rowe & Hamilton
If you know an elderly person who is a victim of negligence, domestic violence, sexual abuse, emotional abuse, or financial exploitation, give your best to help them. You may be the only person who will do that and save them from their misery.
If you are related to the elderly person, call the police immediately and consult our elderly abuse lawyers.
You can file a lawsuit against the nursing home, the caregiver or family member who abuses the elderly victim.
Our team at Rowe & Hamilton is not a stranger to lawsuits against nursing home abuse. We were working on such cases for thirty-two years. Our mission is to fight and represent the vulnerable people who deserve to spend their old age in peace.
Call our Indianapolis elderly abuse law firm and schedule your consultation today.