William W. Hurst
Law Office of William W. Hurst, LLC
50 S. Meridian St., Suite 600, Indianapolis, IN 46204
Your Indiana Lawyers:
What is Elder Abuse?
Sadly, elder abuse is a phenomenon that is prolific in today’s society. In 2010 nearly 6 million cases of elder abuse were reported in the U.S. Even more sadly, that number is undoubtedly an inaccurately low one. The National Center on Elder Abuse is convinced that numerous instances of elder abuse go on unreported or unrecognized. “Elder abuse” is defined by the Administration on Aging as “the intentional or negligent act by a family member or caregiver that causes harm or serious risk of harm to an older adult.” “Elder” is defined as anyone 60 years or older. Elder abuse can manifest in a variety of ways including: physical abuse (inflicting or threatening to inflict), sexual abuse, emotional or psychological abuse (mental or emotional anguish through verbal or non-verbal acts), financial or material exploitation (illegal taking, misuse, or concealment of the money or property of an elder), neglect (refusal or failure by those responsible to provide food, shelter, health care, or protection), self-neglect (allowing activity by an elder that threatens his or her own health), or abandonment (desertion of an elder by anyone who has assumed responsibility or custody of that elder). Elder abuse also happens in a variety of environments, from an individual’s home to assisted living facilities or nursing homes.
Facts and Figures of Elder Abuse
According to the National Center on Elder Abuse, Bureau of Justice Statistics, the number of elderly abuse cases in 2010 was 5,961,568. Looked at another way, the percent of the total elderly population in the US abused in 2010 was 9.5 %. The most common type of elder abuse was found to be neglect (58.5 % of reported cases). Most cases, 66%, were perpetuated by adult children or spouses of the elder while nursing homes and assisted living facilities made up a majority of the remainder. The percent of nursing homes that have been in violation of elder abuse laws was found to be at 36%. Elderly women are also 2/3rds more likely to be abused than elderly men. Indiana’s elder population in 2010 was 1,128,000. It is suspected that about 12% of that population was subject to some form of elder abuse.
Symptoms and Signs of Elder Abuse
Elder abuse can come in several forms. To help protect your loved ones, keep an eye out for these common signs of elder abuse as laid out by the National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA). While one sign does not necessarily indicate abuse, some tell-tale signs that there could be a problem include:
Most important is to be alert. The suffering is often in silence. If you notice changes in personality or behavior, you should start to question what is going on.
If you think you or one of your loved ones has been the victim of elder abuse, please seek help. Each one of us has a responsibility to keep vulnerable elders safe from harm. The laws in most states also requires helping professions in the front lines — such as doctors and home health providers — to report suspected abuse or neglect. Call the police or 9-1-1 immediately if someone you know is in immediate, life-threatening danger. If the danger is not immediate, but you suspect that abuse has occurred or is occurring, please tell your concerns to the local adult protective services, long-term care ombudsman, or police. For a list of reporting numbers click: Where to Report Abuse. You can also reach the Eldercare Locator by telephone at 1-800-677-1116. Specially trained operators will refer you to a local agency that can help. The Eldercare Locator is open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Eastern Time.
Federal Agencies Relating to Elder Abuse
Indiana Agencies Relating to Elder Abuse
State and Federal Laws Relating to Elder Abuse
Contact Us for Legal Assistance
If you or your loved one has been the victim of abuse, exploitation, or neglect, you are not alone. Many people care and can help. If you believe that you have a claim for elder abuse on behalf of yourself or a loved one contact William W. Hurst immediately at 800-363-0808 for a free consultation. Anyone filing a complaint concerning an endangered adult in good faith is immune from civil or criminal liability. We will advise you of all your legal rights and if we represent your family, we only charge a fee if we are successful in your case. See our website: http://www.https://billhurst.com/m or call 800-636-0808.
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