It may be surprising to some people that perpetrators of elder abuse are often family members, friends, and other trusted individuals. When an elderly person is in a vulnerable situation, it is easy for a family member, friend or trusted person to take advantage and manipulate the elderly individual. For example, a spouse, sibling, or child may have access to the elderly individual’s finances, and may willingly steal money. Additionally, family members and friends may commit acts of physical or emotional abuse, treating the elderly person as if he or she is a burden.
While family members, friends, and other trusted individuals are common culprits for abusing the elderly, many elderly victims are sexually abused by staff members at nursing homes, hospitals, and assisted living homes, among other facilities for the elderly. It can be difficult for an elderly victim to communicate to others that he or she is suffering from sexual abuse. As such, it is important that all elderly individuals have a support system in place to help prevent instances of elder abuse.
When it is Time to Contact an Attorney
Regardless of whether it is a friend, family member, acquaintance, or staff member, among others, if a person suspects an elderly individual is being abused, it is imperative to both report the alleged abuse, and to contact an attorney to help protect the elderly victim’s rights and interests. A person’s later years should be pleasant, not painful. When elderly victims are abused by family members, friends and other trusted individuals, the harm that can result is immeasurable. Therefore, allowing an attorney to investigate the situation on the elderly victim’s behalf may be necessary to stopping the abuse and finding ways to prevent the abuse from continuing in the future.