Elder Abuse Attorney in Los Angeles, CA
Vulnerable elderly dependent adults that require care in a nursing home or from a caregiver, either a professional or a relative, can suffer from abuse or neglect. At Norman Taylor & Associates, the Los Angeles elder abuse lawyer is an advocate for the rights of the elderly will take action to protect your relative from further harm, neglect abuse or other illegal act.
Areas of Practice
Nursing Home Abuse
As the population ages, there is an increase in the number of care facilities in the Los Angeles area. These facilities may not train their staff adequately, or may have failed to provide the accepted level of care, leading to abuse or neglect. If you suspect that an elderly person is being abused or neglected, it is critical that you act quickly and contact the firm.
Financial Elder Abuse
When a dependent adult requires ongoing care to assist them, they can fall prey to financial elder abuse. There are countless cases in which an older person under care has lost their entire estate that they had intended to pass on to their loved ones to a caregiver or relative that had access to their bank accounts, stock accounts or even their property.
Physical Elder Abuse
The vulnerable and frail state of the elderly can make them a perfect target for criminal acts, including physical harm. The improper use of restraints, causing bruising, striking, kicking, slapping or other physical abuse cannot be tolerated and those involved must be stopped and held accountable.
Sexual Elder Abuse
Dependent adults can becomes victims of sexual predators, either in a nursing home or in cases of private homecare workers. Many elderly people are unable to communicate what is happening, or they are humiliated and threatened with repercussions do not report the situation.
Neglect is one of the most common forms of abuse that is inflicted on dependent adults. Lack of proper hygiene, nutrition, over-medication and even a failure to provide respectful and compassionate care and interaction can lead to health and emotional problems. Any such case should be addressed at once with the help of an advocate for elder rights.
When a dependent adult is not properly cared for, a common and serious medical problem that can arise are bedsores. This condition is extremely dangerous to the physical health of the individual, and can lead to the need for amputations and can be the cause of death if action is not taken.
Assisted Living Facilities
We place our elderly relatives in assisted living facilities so that they can get the ongoing care and treatment that they need, and we assume that they will be cared for with a high level of professional skill. Unfortunately, this is not always the case, and dependent adults can become victims of abuse or neglect.
Lack of Proper Care
It is expected that an elderly person will be cared for with attention to all of their physical and emotional needs; treated with kindness; and that they are cared for at the accepted level of care. When they fail to do so, they can be held accountable both in criminal and civil court.
Lack of Dignity and Respect
Our elderly, after a lifetime of work, raising a family and contributing to society, deserve to be treated with dignity and respect, and under the law, this right is protected. When they are treated unkindly, are abused or neglected, it is a violation of their rights as well as illegal.
One of the most common forms of abuse of dependent adults is malnutrition. They must be carefully monitored in a nursing home or by a caregiver to ensure that they get proper nutrition. Any nursing home, assisted living facility or caregiver that allows a dependent adult to suffer from malnutrition must be held accountable.
Allowing a dependent adult to become severely dehydrated is a form of abuse or neglect. The signs of dehydration include dry, flaky skin, dry mouth, confusion, muscle weakness, urinary tract infections, weight loss, fever, dizziness and others, all of which are extremely dangerous to their health.
Unaddressed Infections / Sepsis
It is far too common that infections are not properly treated in nursing homes or by home caregivers to the elderly. A failure to correctly control and treat an infection can lead to further complications, serious illness and death. All nursing homes are required to manage infections and provide an environment that is safe and monitors all health issues of their residents.
Violation of Resident's Rights
Under state law, residents of nursing homes have specific rights. Each care facility must provide a list of these rights to the resident when they are admitted to the nursing home or other facility. They have the right to privacy, dignity and respect, to choose their own doctor, to their personal property and others.
Wandering / Elopement
There are many dependent adults that suffer from Alzheimer's disease or other form of dementia. Wandering is one of the problems associated with Alzheimer's specifically, due to the impaired memory of the individual, which makes them easily disoriented and unable to recognize where they are, how they got there and other problems.
How to Report Elder Abuse
Under the state's Elder and Dependent Adult Civil Protection Act, commonly termed the "Elder Abuse Act", the rights of the elderly to get legal representation to pursue damages after being abused or neglected are clearly outlined. The Los Angeles County Adult Protective Services (APS) must be contacted and the abuse reported immediately if the signs are evident.
The Nursing Home Reform Act
Reforms were made to protect the elderly by the passage of the Nursing Home Reform Act of 1987. This Act has the objective to ensure that dependent adults that reside in nursing homes receive the level of care that they deserve, and established standards for the services that are provided in these facilities.
Home Health Agencies
Prevent abuse of the elderly or dependent adults that are cared for by personnel from home health agencies is a vital concern. It is estimated that 17% of those over the age of 65 need assistance with their daily activities, and rely on support from personnel provided by home health agencies. Ensuring that your relative is not at risk of emotional, physical or financial abuse from a caregiver is a critical issue.
By being aware and looking out for any dangers or warnings, you may be able to avoid abuse all together. Read about some of the things to be on guard for or the ways that abuse can often be overlooked.