Identifying the Red Flags of Elder and Financial Abuse 

Elder Abuse Attorneys - McCune Law Group

Elder and financial abuse are two distressing issues that continue to plague our loved ones both within elder car facilities and living in their own homes. As our population ages, our reliance on other caregivers increases, making each elderly individual more susceptible to elder and financial abuse. It is crucial for families, caregivers, and concerned individuals to be vigilant and informed as their loved ones need greater amounts of care. At MLG, we are committed to safeguarding the rights and well-being of the elderly. In this blog, we will explore the red flags associated with elder and financial abuse, empowering you to protect your loved ones as they become more vulnerable to abuse. 

Understanding Elder and Financial Abuse 

Understanding the several types of nursing home abuse is essential to recognizing it in the lives of your aging loved ones. Care facilities may be staffed by “professional caregivers”, but the number of residents, lengthy shifts, and relaxing standards in many facilities may create an environment in which elder abuse can thrive. According to Nursing Home Abuse Justice, roughly 85% of assisted living facilities reported at least one case of abuse or neglect. Physical injuries tend to come to mind when one thinks of elder abuse in nursing homes. However, nursing home abuse can include other forms of abuse that may not always be physical. Other forms of abuse include: 

  • Neglect 
  • Sexual Assault 
  • Emotional Harm 
  • Financial Abuse 
  • Improper Nutrition 
  • Medication Errors 

While some of these types of nursing home abuse may not leave physical marks, they are just as harmful. Some can severely affect the quality of your loved one’s life. Keeping a close eye on your loved one in a nursing home or care facility is the best way to ensure their safety. 

Recognizing Red Flags 

Abuse or neglect are becoming more commonplace in nursing homes due to poor staffing and funding, yet spotting the signs is not always easy. There are a few red flags to look for when you suspect your loved ones are being subjected to abuse: 

  • Sudden Isolation: One of the first red flags to watch out for is when an elderly person becomes suddenly isolated from friends and family. Perpetrators often isolate their victims to exert more control. 
  • Unexplained Injuries: Frequent unexplained injuries or a pattern of physical harm should raise suspicion. Bruises, fractures, or cuts may indicate physical abuse or neglect. 
  • Emotional Withdrawal: An abrupt change in an elder’s demeanor, such as increased withdrawal, depression, or fear, could be a sign of emotional abuse or undue influence. 
  • Changes in Financial Behavior: Keep an eye on significant changes in an elder’s financial behavior. This may include unusual withdrawals, unexplained account activity, or unpaid bills. 
  • Unusual Bank Transactions: Be wary of unfamiliar individuals or those who do not need to assist your loved one in banking matters accompanying themto the bank or ATM. This could indicate financial exploitation. 
  • Reluctance to Discuss Finances: If an elder is unwilling to discuss their financial situation, despite having previously been open about it, this could be a sign that they are being coerced. 
  • Caregiver Overinvolvement: Watch for caregivers who seem excessively involved in an elder’s life and financial affairs, especially when there is no prior relationship or history. 

Frequently Asked Questions: 

What are some common signs of elder financial abuse?

Common signs of elder financial abuse include sudden changes in an elderly person’s financial behavior, such as unexplained withdrawals, unpaid bills, or unusual account activity. Additionally, look for missing personal belongings, valuable items, or cash from the elder’s home. Often, perpetrators isolate the elder from family and friends, exerting control and making it harder for anyone to detect the abuse. Caregivers who become overly involved in the elder’s life and financial affairs, especially if they have no prior relationship or history, can also be a red flag. 

If you suspect financial abuse of an elderly family member or friend, it is crucial to take immediate action. Start by talking to the elderly person gently and expressing your concerns, while listening to their perspective without judgment. Document any suspicious incidents, conversations, or financial transactions meticulously. Next, report the abuse to the appropriate authorities, such as Adult Protective Services and local law enforcement. Consult with an MLG attorney who is experienced in elder law to explore legal options for protecting your loved one’s rights and assets. 

Preventing elder financial abuse involves being proactive and vigilant. Stay involved in your elderly loved one’s life, maintaining open lines of communication. Educate them about the signs of financial abuse and encourage them to share any concerns with you. Ensure that their legal documents, such as wills and powers of attorney, are up to date and reflect their true intentions. Be cautious of new acquaintances and caregivers who show undue interest in their finances. Regularly review their financial statements and accounts with them for any unusual activity. 

Victims of elder financial abuse have legal recourse to seek justice and recover their losses. They can file a complaint with Adult Protective Services or local law enforcement, who may investigate. Additionally, they can consult with an attorney experienced in elder law to explore civil remedies, such as pursuing a lawsuit against the perpetrator for financial restitution.  

How to Start Your Potential Case 

If you or a loved one has fallen victim of nursing home and elder abuse and are ready to receive help, follow these simple steps to begin your path to recovery and potential compensation: 

  1. Fill out our form with your information 
  2. Set up your free consultation 
  3. Meet with our Nursing Home & Elder Abuse team
  4. Discuss your potential case 
  5. Discuss your next steps 

Pursing Justice Through Strength and Compassion in the Inland Empire and Nationwide 

At MLG, our dedicated Nursing Home and Elder Abuse lawyers are committed to safeguarding the elderly population from nursing home and elder abuse. We understand the vulnerability that comes with aging and the importance of ensuring the well-being and dignity of our older clients. With a deep understanding of the laws and regulations surrounding elder abuse, our attorneys work tirelessly to hold negligent nursing homes and individuals accountable for their actions. 

To learn more about nursing home and elder abuse, contact McCune Law Group by completing the form or calling (909) 345-8110 today for a free consultation!     

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