Elder Abuse & Neglect

Expert Santa Clarita Elder Abuse Attorney

Victims of Elder Abuse or Neglect Can Take Legal Action

As we age, a large number of us need help with everyday tasks. We put our trust in the individuals and facilities that care for seniors. Regrettably, we know there is a small percentage of caregivers to the elderly who take advantage of their position and either hurt or neglect their charges who represent some of our most at-risk citizens.

Senior Partner Greg Owen discusses Elder Sexual Abuse incident that took place in a nursing facility. Owen, Patterson & Owen obtained a 12.5 million dollar jury verdict for their client.

Owen, Patterson & Owen obtained landmark 12.5 million jury verdict for an Elder Sexual Abuse victim in a Los Angeles Superior Court.

Senior Partner Greg Owen appeared on ABC 7 discussing a new case.

Missing Alzheimer’s Patient Turns up Dead

News on this case
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A study done in 1994 showed that about five percent of nursing aids who were registered with the state had been involved in acts of violence and/or theft that were on their record.

Plus, a study Congress did in 2001 said that state inspectors could find "serious abuse" cases at ten percent of nursing homes.

To paraphrase Sen. John Breaux (D-La.), A crime is still a crime. It doesn't matter whether it occurred inside or outside of a nursing home. The fact is our seniors residing in nursing homes should not spend their senior years living in fear. 

Things to Understand

  •  As people age, there are likely to be some signs of deterioration or injury from time to time. However, a lot of such deterioration and injury can be prevented if the right care is given.
  • Elderly people living in skilled nursing facilities are protected by the Nursing Home Reform Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act.
  • Residents not only have the right not to be physically or mentally abused, they also should be free from unneeded physical or chemical restraints; further, they should be treated in a manner that is considerate and respectful and preserves their dignity.

They should also have the right to have a say in the care they receive.

Some Signs of Abuse: There are warning signs that might hint at the possibility that elder abuse has taken place. Such warning signs might be things like lots of fights or ill will between the one giving care and the one receiving it or changes you might notice in the older person's behavior or general personality.

If you believe, but cannot be sure, elder abuse has occurred, as an experienced elder neglect and sexual abuse attorney, here are some warning signs to look for:

  • Specific Signs of Abuse Physical abuse
  • Bruises, welts, or scars, particularly if they are on both sides of the body, for which there is no known cause
  • Restraint marks, like rope marks on wrists
  • Caretaker unable to fully explain condition; Caregiver will not let you be alone with senior
  • Breaks, sprains, or dislocated joints; Damaged eyeglass lenses or frames
  • Restraints or psychotropic drugs being used for any reason that is inconsistent with the doctor’s orders
  • Injuries that justify a trip to the ER or overnight hospital stay
  • Any injury or death that happens during or right after the senior wanders off
  • Quick weight loss or gain without the doctor or family being told
  • Unexplained or unexpected death
  • Injury caused by another senior
  • Sicknesses that go unreported
  • Lack of access to food or drink
  • Over- or under-medicating
  • Senior complains of being hit or harmed in any way

 Sexual abuse

  • Bruises on private parts
  • Sexually transmitted diseases or genital infections
  • Unexplained vaginal or rectal bleeding
  • Damaged, soiled, or bloody undergarments

 Emotional abuse

  • Threats, verbal insults, or controlling actions by caregiver
  • Senior shows signs of emotional upset or agitation
  • Senior acts in a manner consistent with dementia, like sucking, biting, and rocking
  • Isolation and lack of communication; Seeking isolation
  • Acting in a manner that is not normal for the senior, like withdrawing and shutting down
  • Humiliation, insults, fear tactics, or threats
  • Being made to remain in one’s room

Healthcare fraud and abuse

  • Double billing for services or health care equipment
  • Over- or under-medication
  • Failing to provide care that has been billed
  • Under-staffing and poorly trained staff
  • Poor responses to care-related inquiries

 Neglect by caregivers or self

  •  Dehydration, poor nutrition, and bed sores
  • Inadequate food, clothing, or shelter

Schedule a free consultation with a Santa Clarita Elder Abuse & Neglect attorney by calling 800-676-5295.  Or send an email so that we can discuss your accident with you and determine the best steps to move forward for your protection.