Financial Elder Abuse in Alaska Nursing Homes

Financial Elder Abuse in Alaska Nursing Homes.

The elderly are among the most vulnerable members of society. When you send your loved one to a nursing home, you expect that they will be properly cared for — and kept safe from harm. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Instances of abuse in nursing homes are all too common, including financial elder abuse. If you suspect that a nursing home, assisted living facility, or another elder care facility is taking advantage of your loved one’s finances, it’s important to be able to identify the signs and know what action to take.

What is Nursing Home Financial Abuse?

There are several types of abuse that can occur in nursing homes, including physical, emotional, sexual, and psychological abuse. However, there is another type of abuse that is often overlooked because it can be more difficult to detect — nursing home financial abuse. While this form of nursing home abuse can happen to any resident, those with cognitive impairments who cannot make sound decisions are more at risk.

Nursing home financial abuse occurs when a nursing home facility, staff member, or another person with authority uses their position to financially exploit a resident. In some cases, family members, caregivers, or close friends of the elderly person can also commit elder abuse after being granted a power of attorney when the individual has been placed in the nursing home. No matter who commits the wrongdoing, financial abuse in nursing homes can be defined as improperly or illegally using someone else’s assets or property for their own financial gain.

Warning Signs of Nursing Home Financial Abuse

The signs of nursing home financial abuse can be subtle or distinct — every case is unique. However, there are some common signs that loved ones can look for. For instance, if personal belongings are missing from a nursing home resident’s possession or they become reluctant to discuss financial issues, these facts may warrant looking into whether financial elder abuse is occurring. Other indications can be sudden isolation, caregiver overinvolvement, and new “friends” that appear in the elder person’s life with no prior involvement.

Additional warning signs that nursing home financial abuse is taking place can include the following:

  • Theft of money or personal property
  • Unusual withdrawals from bank accounts
  • Changes made to wills, trusts, or deeds
  • Forged signatures
  • Cashing checks without permission
  • Unexplained missing assets
  • Missing Social Security checks
  • A new power of attorney

Financial abuse may also occur by the perpetrator making purchases using the victim’s credit card or taking out cash advances. Other financial exploitation can include charging for services that weren’t rendered, billing twice for the same service, or overcharging for various services. There may also be non-financial indications of financial abuse such as signs of neglect, physical injuries, lack of basic care, and unsanitary living conditions.

What are the Remedies for Nursing Home Financial Abuse?

If you suspect your loved one is being subjected to nursing home financial abuse, it’s essential to consult with an experienced attorney immediately. They can evaluate your case and assist you with investigating the matter. An attorney who handles these types of matters can also advise you regarding the best course of action and explain your legal recourse.

In addition to seeking justice by filing a complaint with Adult Protective Services and law enforcement, there are also civil remedies available to a victim of nursing home financial abuse. Significantly, the victim may be entitled to restitution for their financial losses. In addition, other types of abuse may be present along with the financial abuse. If physical abuse has also occurred with the financial exploitation, a victim may be eligible to recover compensation for their medical bills and pain and suffering.

Contact an Experienced Alaska Nursing Home Financial Abuse Attorney

If you suspect that your family member or loved one has been subjected to nursing home financial abuse or exploitation, it’s essential to understand what legal recourse is available. An experienced nursing home financial abuse attorney can assist you with obtaining the justice that your loved one deserves.

Proudly serving accident victims in Anchorage, Soldotna, Kenai, Palmer, Wasilla, and other areas of Alaska, The Trial Guy, Eric Derleth, is committed to representing clients for a wide array of personal injury matters, including those involving various forms of nursing home abuse and neglect. Call 907-262-9164 to schedule a free consultation at our Anchorage or Soldotna office, or contact us online. Our phone lines are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Categories: Uncategorized