Ontario Elder Abuse Attorney
We all love our older parents. But what if others are abusing them? Did you know that approximately 60% of their abusers are family members or caregivers? Make sure your loved one is taken care of and that their matters are handled with care, compassion, and discretion.
Let our Ontario elder abuse attorney at Alden Law Firm help you. We have years of experience handling estate, elder abuse, and other legal issues. Call us today, and we’ll explain the steps we can take to protect your loved one.
Protect Your Loved Ones From Abuse; Contact an Experienced Ontario Elder Abuse Attorney for Help
Abuse is a serious matter. The financial and emotional burden that falls upon an abused elder is devastating—forcing them to suffer in silence and fear. However, our dedicated elder law lawyers ensure that help is available and hopes for an abused elder’s future. Together, we will find solutions to get your family members justice and protect their rights.
Contact our law firm today if you suspect your elderly parent got abused or neglected. We offer a free consultation with no obligations. Call us at (213)-214-6937 or fill out the form below to contact us.
Different Forms of Elder Abuse
According to Ontario Human Rights Commission, about 4%, or 60,000, of Ontario’s 1.5 million older residents are victims of elder abuse. However, many elderly individuals are unwilling to report elder abuse due to the social stigma or fear of the consequences of reporting a loved one or caregiver.
Elder abuse has many different forms. Knowing these can help you protect older persons, particularly those in nursing facilities.
Financial elder abuse is the improper, unauthorized, or unlawful use of an elderly’s resources by strangers, family members, or nursing care personnel.
Elder financial abuse warning signs include:
A pattern of lost property or possessions;
Signing legal documents that they do not fully understand;
Being unaware of or uninformed about their financial condition;
Bank statements or canceled checks addressed to parties other than the elder;
Alterations to a senior’s power of attorney or financial accounts;
Notices of eviction;
Manifestation of overdue bills;
Withdrawals of money the elderly were not capable of making; or
The sudden shortage of cash to cover living expenses.
Any forced or non-consensual sexual contact with an older adult qualifies as elder sexual abuse. It includes sexual relations with older adults who cannot agree due to dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, or other cognitive impairments.
The following are signs of sexual elder abuse:
Bleeding from the genitalia or anus;
Genital or inner thigh bruises;
New STDs or STIs (sexually transmitted diseases or infections);
Pain in the genital or anus;
Pelvic sprains; or
Issues with standing or sitting.
Anyone, including nursing home employees, residents, in-home caregivers, friends, and family members, can abuse an older person sexually.
Mental and Emotional Abuse
Psychological and emotional abuse are acts done to hurt, scare, or upset an older person.
Emotional abuse can take many different forms. For instance, caregivers may insult, slander, or threaten seniors. However, it goes beyond simple name-calling. Caretakers may also isolate seniors from family, friends, and resources.
Psychological and emotional elder abuse include:
Showing signs of depression, withdrawal, or fear;
Different eating or sleeping schedules;
Separation from family and friends;
Lack of confidence;
Mood changes; or
Abrupt changes in personality or behavior.
Any physical abuse against an elderly person results in serious bodily harm. The wounds can take months to heal, or they might even be a factor in an elder’s death.
Family members, friends, nursing home employees, or other residents may physically abuse older people. This type of elder abuse may take place frequently or perhaps occasionally. Unfortunately, elderly individuals are more susceptible to abuse because of their weaker bodies, resulting in permanent health issues or even death.
Elder physical abuse signs include:
Scrapes or cuts;
Head trauma; or
There are other indicators that an older person has experienced physical abuse in addition to physical injuries.
These indicators include:
A pattern of similar or identical injuries treated in hospitals;
Delayed medical attention for an injury;
Insufficient explanations of the elder’s injury; or
Visits to several emergency rooms (to possibly avoid suspicion).
Neglect or Abandonment
Elder neglect occurs when a caretaker neglects to keep an elderly safe, leading to significant illnesses or injuries. Elder and nursing home neglect is not an unintentional occurrence. Instead, they are the outcome of negligence or a disregard for an older person’s health.
Elderly neglect is manifested by:
Malnutrition or dehydration;
Inadequate or dirty attire;
Food shortage in the home or long-term care institution;
Lack of essential medical equipment;
Unclean personal belongings;
Unsanitary or dangerous long-term care facility;
Untreated illnesses or wounds; or
Loss of weight.
Serious health issues, including bedsores, infections, and even death, can result from neglect. Unfortunately, assisted living facilities with personnel issues are highly prone to neglect.
Pay Attention to the Signs of Elder Abuse
The best method to ensure that you recognize the warning signs of elder abuse is to become familiar with the signs of the different types of elder abuse. Always pay great attention to the individual and the person in charge of their care.
Ask questions and take action if you have even the slightest worry. Better to discover late than to pretend all is well while abuse continues.
What Can I Do About Elder Abuse in Ontario?
While the vast majority of seniors in Ontario are fortunate enough to live safe, independent lives and have the support of family and friends, some face violence, neglect, and exploitation. If you are concerned about what you can do about elder abuse in Ontario, there are many steps you can take to try and prevent it.
Speak With Your Loved One
If you think your loved one is a victim of elder abuse, you should first speak with him and see if he will open up to you. However, there might be some reasons he would be unwilling to disclose the truth and act in a way that seems like abuse. There are a couple of reasons why this situation may occur:
They may deny the abuse because they feel ashamed or guilty about it.
They fear that no one will believe them and that they have been manipulated into silence by their abuser.
They may fear for their safety if they confront their abuser.
It can be challenging for older persons who live alone to acknowledge that they now rely entirely on social assistance and others for care.
But keep in mind that your intervention could make things better for your loved one in the long run. Even if they don’t want to talk with you right now, they may remember your kindness in the future and realize how much support they need.
Try To Gather as Much Evidence as You Can
It is a good idea to gather as much evidence as possible when addressing elder abuse. In some cases, gathering those evidence may be difficult. Still, with diligence and perseverance, you will be able to assemble all the information you need to address the issue of elder abuse. Here are some possible scenarios you can get evidence from:
If your loved one seems to be in physical pain or someone else is causing pain, take photos of any injuries, record the date and time, and write down exactly what happened.
If they’re experiencing abuse, there may be signs of physical abuse, like cuts or bruises around their face or body.
It would help if you also kept an eye out for financial abuse. You may notice the older person’s mail taken from their home or a caregiver being overly controlling about money. If you can access their bank account, look for substantial withdrawals or purchases.
Call the Law Enforcement
If you suspect elderly abuse by a family member, friend, or caregiver, contact the local police immediately. In Ontario, it’s a criminal offense to harm seniors. If you have any evidence of this abuse—such as photos or journal entries—you should bring them to your meeting with law enforcement officers.
Inform Respective Government Agencies
Follow up on your police report by contacting government agencies that handle older people’s abuse cases. Most likely, the police will give you information on who to talk to.
Find an Elder Law Lawyer
If you suspect that an elderly loved one is being abused or neglected, it’s crucial to investigate the situation and take action if the abuse is taking place. To do this, you should find an experienced elder law lawyer. Our experienced lawyers at Alden Law can help you deal with the situation and protect your elderly loved one from further harm.
Talk to Our Experienced Ontario Elder Abuse Attorney
As a results-oriented Ontario elder abuse law firm, we know how to navigate the complexities of this field. No matter how complex or unique your situation may be, we can help you put an end to the abuse and get the compensation you deserve. Moreover, with Alden Law Firm, you can access our legal services and advice to help you understand your options and make the best decisions for your family member. Contact us today for a free consultation.
Ontario Elder Abuse Attorney FAQS
Who Can Report a Case of Elder Abuse?
Elder abuse is not justifiable in any way! Anyone can report elder abuse, and they should. If you know or think an older person suffers from abuse, you should tell the police. CALL 911 if you need help right away.
Are There Any Laws About Elder Abuse Reporting in Retirement or Long-term Care Homes?
In Ontario, maltreatment of the elderly in long-term care homes and retirement homes is governed by two independent statutes: the Retirement Homes Act of 2010 and the Long-Term Care Homes Act of 2007. Under both laws, abuse or suspicions of abuse must be reported if they involve:
Improper or incompetent care or treatment of a resident caused injury or a risk of harm to the person.
Abuse or neglect of an elderly by the licensee or the staff of the elderly’s home if it causes harm or puts the resident in danger.
Unlawful behavior that caused or posed a threat of injury to a resident.
Misappropriation or misuse of a resident’s funds.
What Are the Penalties of Elder Abuse in Ontario, CA?
If you are suspected of elder abuse, you may face misdemeanor or felony charges, depending on how the prosecution handles the case.
Penalties for misdemeanor elder abuse include a fine of up to $6,000 and a year in county prison.
A more serious offense is felony elder abuse.
If you are guilty of a felony, authorities may impose state jail terms of up to 4 years.
If the elderly victim was physically harmed, your sentence might be lengthened by 3 years for victims under 70 and 5 years for victims over 70.
Similarly, if you are guilty of causing an elder abuse death, your sentence may be increased by 5 years for victims under 70 and 7 years for victims over 70.