We want the best for our loved ones, and we expect everyone around them to handle them with the utmost care and respect. It’s difficult to imagine the possibility that our elders are subject to neglect and abuse. Unfortunately, it’s not always guaranteed that your family member is receiving appropriate care.
Acting impulsively and making hasty decisions is not the solution in this scenario. Abusers might notice your suspects and do everything they can to hide their wrongdoings, which is why you should speak with an elder abuse lawyer.
Our attorneys have compiled a list of frequently asked questions to help you navigate your case. Read through our San Diego elder abuse FAQ and contact our firm if you need help facing your claim.
Caregivers have the legal duty to provide for your elder’s needs. If you notice anything wrong on a physical level, like unexplained wounds or broken bones that can’t be linked to a pre-existing health condition, you should take legal action before it’s too late.
Abuse can also take place on a mental level, and your loved one may have been intimidated into silence. If you notice fearfulness or major changes in their mood, there’s a possibility they’re unable to speak without consequences. An abuser may also insist on being present at all times. You should always try to have a private conversation when speaking about this delicate topic.
Financial abuse is one of the most commonly reported types of abuse, especially for older people who are unable to understand what’s going on around them. Abusers may force an older person to sign documents and checks that let them control your loved one’s finances, and can even go as far as using an ATM to obtain cash for their personal needs.
You should keep an eye out for large movements or signatures you don’t recognize on documentation related to their bank account. If it’s possible, try to personally handle your loved one’s transactions. If you notice anything wrong, contact the bank immediately and report what happened to your local police department.
Adult protective services (APS) should be contacted as soon as you notice symptoms of abuse and neglect, like bedsores or malnourishment. Local agencies can be reached through their 24-hour hotline which will give you the chance to file a complaint or request assistance directly.
They can even work closely with law enforcement if you’ve already reported episodes of abuse to police officers.
You’ll need to start gathering evidence as soon as you suspect abuse, neglect, or exploitation. Obtaining documentation that can confirm your side of the story will make it significantly harder for abusers to fight back. This step also increases your chances of receiving the compensation you need to take care of all damages caused by their harmful behavior.
Medical records are a good start if you suspect physical abuse, as a doctor can analyze injuries and notice if your loved one has been struck or assaulted. Bank statements that show irregular movements are another important piece of evidence, as well as pictures that accurately depict their health conditions.
Your statements can also be used as evidence, but for them to have any value, you’ll need to keep a detailed log of all facts that can point to episodes of abuse. This may include conversations you’ve had with caregivers, eyewitness testimony, and the date and time of the suspected abuse.
You’re not required by law to consult with an attorney, but having a lawyer can be key to a successful case. That’s especially true in this delicate situation where a mistake could lead to further unnoticed abuse.
Lawyers can use their knowledge to handle paperwork, gather evidence on your behalf, and help you seek the compensation needed to take care of your loved one’s injuries. They can also represent you in court, presenting evidence and arguing on your loved one’s behalf.
If you suspect neglect or abuse, there’s no time to waste. You need to act immediately before irreversible consequences take place. Obtaining monetary compensation will let you respect your loved one’s needs and move them to a better structure that treats them fairly.
Our reputable attorneys at The Kindley Firm, APC, will consider your case a priority, and we won’t stop fighting for vulnerable individuals until you’ve obtained the settlement you deserve. You can get started now by calling 619-550-1313 or completing our quick contact form below.