What is Involved in Elder Abuse?

February 11, 2020

With thousands of cases of elder abuse reported in the U.S. every year, it is inconceivable that an estimated five out of six incidents go unreported. Elder abuse is all too common, and it is perpetrated by trusted and intimate caregivers. In fact, about 10 percent of older adults experience some type of elder abuse. The following are surprising statistics about the disturbing maltreatment of one of our most vulnerable populations.

What is Elder Abuse?

Elder abuse can take the form of physical, emotional, or sexual abuse or neglect of an older adult. It can involve financial crimes or fraud, such as stealing social security checks or other income or manipulating health care paperwork to charge for undue or unreceived care. It often involves schemes to trick seniors to release personal information that makes them vulnerable to fraud or identity theft. Elder abuse happens most often in the home where the senior lives. It is also common in long-term care settings.

Unfortunately, considering the setting for most of these abuses, seniors most often take abuse from those they depend on for basic needs and ongoing medical care. Nearly 90 percent of elder abuse cases are at the hands of a family member. Sixty-six percent of elder abusers are spouses or adult children.

Types of Elder Abuse

Financial exploitation is the most common form of elder abuse. Physical abuse, neglect, and emotional abuse are also way too common. Some of the most common types of elder abuse are listed below:

Financial exploitation: Seniors are often the target of cons that aim to steal or defraud, such as when a caregiver helps themselves to the senior’s accounts or forges their signature. Fake charities, investments, and contests are other scams.

Physical abuse: Physical abuse is force that causes pain or injury. It can also be improper use of medication or restraints.

Neglect: Constituting more than half of elder abuse cases, elder neglect occurs when a caregiver does not meet the basic needs of the senior. Unfortunately, this type of abuse is often unintentionally committed by uninformed or overwhelmed caregivers.

Emotional abuse: When a caregiver intimidates, humiliates, or ignores a senior, it can cause great psychological suffering.

Sexual abuse: In addition to sexual acts lacking consent, elder sexual abuse may involve forcing a senior to view pornographic material or other uncomfortable sexual scenarios.

Health care abuse and fraud: Health care professionals may overcharge for services, charge for services not rendered, or provide unnecessary costly treatments.

Brooklyn Elder Abuse Attorneys at Korsinsky & Klein, LLP Help Abused Seniors Recover Damages

If you are an older adult who was abused or you have reason to believe your loved one was abused, the Brooklyn elder abuse attorneys at Korsinsky & Klein, LLP can help. We have the experience to help clients through a civil litigation case by which they can sue to collect damages for the abuse they suffered. Contact us online or call us at 212-495-8133 for an initial consultation. Located in Brooklyn, New York, and Lakewood, New Jersey, we serve clients throughout Manhattan, Long Island, and Westchester, New York.