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Elder Abuse

Elder Abuse

If you have witnessed or been a victim of elder abuse, it's important to contact a lawyer as soon as possible. Those older than 65 are considered elderly, and elder abuse is any act that harms them. This can include physical, psychological, financial, or emotional abuse. Although elder abuse is most likely to take place in places like nursing homes, abuse can happen at home as well. Besides caretakers, family members and friends can abuse the elderly.

How Often Does Elder Abuse Happen?

Unfortunately, senior abuse is a significant problem in many cultures and societies, and it probably occurs far more often than people realize. It is difficult to determine the exact number of elder abuse as not everyone reports it. However, a 2022 study shows that 10% of seniors above 65 have suffered elder abuse. The cases of it are often complicated because not all elder abuse is intentional or malicious, like neglect or abandonment. In addition, not all seniors wish to file a report, especially if the perpetrator is a family member. In fact, 87.5% of seniors who were taken advantage of financially did not report the crime to any law enforcement. In cases like these, it becomes difficult for a senior abuse attorney to help them. Sometimes people abuse elders who have mental disabilities, which makes it even more difficult to pursue justice. Seniors with mental disabilities may not even be aware they are being abused.

What Are Common Signs of Elder Abuse?

Lawyers can take many steps to ensure that elder abuse is prevented. Remember that these signs can be subtle as seniors may feel embarrassed or ashamed to discuss their situation. They may also be afraid of retaliation. But, it is a serious problem that can prove dangerous if ignored. Here are some signs of elder abuse that family members, caregivers, and healthcare providers should be aware of.

Physical Signs

You may see bruises on the body, the face, or the scalp. There may be open wounds, too, or even broken bones. Sometimes, the physical signs aren’t as obvious. A caretaker may push or slap an older person around, for example.

Emotional Signs

Other times, you may notice that an older person has withdrawn or is depressed. They may be reluctant to talk and may suddenly seem fearful. These do not necessarily hint at signs of emotional abuse, but it’s worth looking into. Financial Signs Some abuse may be financial instead. If you notice changes in their bank accounts, you should look into it as soon as possible. If there are new caretakers or new friends that coincide with a dip in their accounts, it may be a sign that financial exploitation is happening. If you suspect financial exploitation, talk to an attorney. An attorney can look at any legal documents to see if there is evidence of foul play.

Neglect or Abandonment

Neglect or abandonment may not be intentional. In some cases, there may be no surviving family members to care for a senior. Sometimes, seniors may have chosen to fall off the grid, detaching themselves from friends and family. In cases like this, no one is at fault. However, a caring friend or relative can step in to help. Signs of neglect or abandonment include neglected medical conditions, abysmal hygiene, and sudden weight loss. If the neglect is intentional, though, hire an elder neglect lawyer immediately.

Sexual Abuse

Sexual abuse can happen to older people as well. Look for any bruises in the genital areas or sexually transmitted diseases. It isn’t always obvious, however. There can be instances of forced oral sex or unwanted touching.

Dynasty Trusts and Income Tax

If you are worried that an aging family member may become a victim of abuse - especially financial - there are some ways to protect their wealth. One way to protect seniors from financial exploitation is to set up a dynasty trust. A dynasty trust allows you to pass wealth from one generation to the next without incurring transfer taxes. It also protects the trust from creditors. Seniors can set up a dynasty trust so that it meets all the financial needs of those they would like to care for. Another important factor to consider when you decide to set up a dynasty trust is income tax considerations. Usually, the income from the assets in the trust will be taxed. However, this tax rate is lower than if you held those assets individually. To set up a dynasty trust, it's important that you get the help of an experienced estate planning attorney. An elder abuse lawyer can give you advice on such matters as well.


An elder abuse lawyer can help seniors in a variety of ways.

Offer Legal Guidance

One of the most important things a senior abuse attorney can do for seniors is to help them understand their legal options. They can advise caring family members on the steps needed to protect seniors from further abuse. The right attorney can also help seniors get compensation in previous instances where there was abuse.


Although some signs may be difficult to see, it’s worth having a lawyer investigate your case if you suspect elder abuse. Lawyer can help you gather evidence and talk to witnesses. Besides building a strong case, it can also help prevent further abuse.

Provide Representation

If you find evidence of abuse,lawyers can help prepare a case for court, represent the abused person, get a settlement, and more.

Fight for Seniors' Rights

Getting the right elder abuse lawyer to advocate for your loved one's rights is important. Throughout the legal process, there will be someone looking out for their rights and interests. An attorney can ensure their financial assets are protected and that their wishes are carried out. When choosing an elder abuse attorney in California, look for an attorney that has experience in handling senior abuse cases. Experienced lawyers can help provide the support and guidance necessary for seniors who have been victims of abuse. They can also ensure seniors receive compensation.


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