Jan 9, 2017

Call a Miami Personal Injury Lawyer to Fight Elder Abuse

Every year we see thousands of cases of elder abuse.  Some are not intentional and consist of negligence, which usually carries with it some legal liability that may be covered under an insurance policy.  They may even come from family members or others with good intentions.  The elderly are more vulnerable in many ways.  Without family and friends looking out for them, they could be in a minefield of abuse and neglect.
Accidents happen in any settings.  The elderly may suffer more serious injuries without abuse or negligence.  When it happens, you should act swiftly and decisively.  Patients in Miami and around the country need a personal injury lawyer to protect loved ones.  Depending on the severity, you could also be protecting other elderly patients from future abuse and neglect – one could only imagine how things would be if people did not know there are consequences for causing injury to others.
Bruises and broken bones are not the only signs of elder abuse … many of the signs are more discreet and harder to identify.
Types of Abuse and Negligence That Personal Injury Lawyers in Miami Are Faced With
Physical abuse is the most common form of abuse we think of.  Victims in Miami call a personal injury lawyer about bruises, broken bones, etc. on a daily basis.  Whenever these cases appear, personal injury lawyers need to treat them with the utmost seriousness.  Sometimes, these are presented as accidents or even self-inflicted by the elder patient.  While the elderly are more vulnerable to natural accidents, we can look at every aspect of your case.  This allows us to determine if the story makes sense and what could have happened.  We also look at videos and other documentation that might help show and prove what happened.  Unfortunately, the elderly are victims of other types of abuse as well.

Sexual:  Elderly patients may be less able to defend themselves against sexual abuse or assault.  When those patients have dementia, they may also have trouble even recalling the event or who the abuser is.  So they make poor witnesses later on.  This could include rape or something like forcing them to undress or watch pornographic materials.
Emotional:  Emotional abuse is one of the most silent types of abuse Americans face.  Patients feel humiliated and/or degraded.  They might be called names or publicly shamed.  The abuser might make derogatory comments about the victim to others.  This could also include caregivers isolating them from others, especially loved ones.
Financial:  Financial abuse could be committed by a stranger across the country.  It involves taking advantage of elderly people financially.  The abuser might get them to write checks, make transfers, withdrawal funds from an ATM, give gifts, etc.  Family members, nursing home staff, and others commit financial abuse.  The longer it goes on, the more damage an abuser can do the a helpless elder.  This could even lead to them draining the victim’s accounts and then disappearing before someone finds out what occurred.
Neglect:  Many forms of abuse require active abuse.  In other words, the abuser does something to purposefully hurt the victim.  Neglect can be just as harmful.  In nursing homes, we often see physical symptoms like bed sores, improper dosage, insufficient frequency of nourishment, some of which can simply seem like weight loss.  For patients with mobility issues, getting them out of bed or to the restroom can be essential.  Even patients in a coma need to be turned regularly to prevent issues like bed sores.  Not providing the proper nutrition, shelter, or medication can also be considered neglect.  Failing to properly supervise other elders in a nursing home that can pose a danger to others is also a form of neglect.

Stay Alert and Be Sure to Call a Personal Injury Attorney in Miami Early
One of the most common responses to elder abuse is silence.  Many victims don’t know how to speak up or have even been threatened by their abusers.  Just like people of any other age, they may feel embarrassed at letting it happen.  Things like dementia only aggravate the problem.  Sometimes, family members don’t see the signs in nursing homes.  Instead, they assume these things are age-related or normal.
If you have any concerns about the care an elderly loved one is receiving, always ask questions.  Do not be afraid to investigate or call a personal injury attorney in Miami.  Unfortunately, you never know what you might turn up.  Even if the staff is seemingly helpful when you’re there, it only takes one bad staff member or one bad day for negligence to rear its ugly head.
A personal injury lawyer can investigate your situation and help determine if negligence is to blame.  If you stay silent and just assume it is part of aging, you could be missing serious problems.  Things like unexplained bruising or soiled undergarments can be signs of a problem.  Some elderly patients also display significant personality changes.  Financial abuse can hit quickly and do irreparable damage before you know it if you are not careful.
Let Personal Injury Lawyers in Miami Help You
A growing number of elderly patients in Miami rely on others to help them with their daily needs. Some live in assisted living facilities or nursing homes.  If you find signs of abuse, always call a personal injury lawyer early.  This can minimize the damage done.  It can also help you prevent future problems for your loved ones and others.
It falls upon the children and other loved ones to be vigilant and watch for the signs of abuse.  Many times, family members go into a nursing home when they cannot receive proper care at home.  So finding that they are not properly cared for can be difficult to face.  With a personal injury lawyer on your side, you can ensure your family’s needs are fully met.  To schedule your free consultation and see if you should take action today, click here.