What Counts as Elder Abuse?


Knowing What to Look Out For

As perhaps one of the most unexpected and unimaginable realities we face, elder abuse and neglect is shockingly common and often goes undetected. More than two million instances of this are reported each year in the United States, meaning that nearly 10% of the entire elderly population will experience it in some form, roughly 70,000 people in New Jersey alone.

These numbers often take people by surprise, and for good reason. The next step, if your loved ones currently inhabit a nursing home or other facility of the sort, where this is most common, is to know the types and signs of their occurring. Finally, it’s important that you know action can be taken against abusers.

The four major kinds of abuse include:

  • Neglect – split by passive and willful neglect, this either occurs because the staff cannot properly accommodate the residents or professionals their deliberately deprive their patients of necessities.
  • Financial exploitation – this can occur in the form of stealing possessions while they are incapacitated or in the form of convincing residents to include them in their will.
  • Physical abuse – the deliberate inflicting of pain on the elderly
  • Emotional/mental abuse – this can include intimidation, verbal threats, and harassment.
  • Sexual abuse – can include fondling or intercourse while the victim is unable to understand, cannot consent, is threatened, or is forced.

The majority of elder abuse comes in the form of neglect, mostly because the staff is underequipped to take proper care of the entire population, and it mostly happens to female elderly patients. In order to spot this, look for bedsores, poor hygiene, and rapid weight loss.

For the other forms, look for an unexplained withdrawal or emotional change in your loved one, especially when it is onset by a particular staff member. This can indicate that something or someone is making them uncomfortable. It may be hard to get a loved one to speak up, but knowing the signs certainly can help.

If you or a loved one has been victimized by abuse or neglect in a nursing home, our firm wants to help you fight back, pursuing the compensation you deserve and the responsible institution accountable.

Call our offices today at (201) 216-0800 to schedule your free, confidential consultation.