What Are the Signs of Elder Neglect?

elderly woman

While elder neglect may not be the same as elder abuse, it is all the more mistreatment of an elder and it is unacceptable behavior. Continue reading to learn the signs of elder neglect and how an experienced California elder abuse lawyer at Cowdrey & Jenkins LLP can help you take necessary action.

What is the definition of elder neglect?

The definition of elder neglect is generally withholding basic care needs that an elderly person requires. The at-fault party can be seen as a caregiver at a nursing home, memory care facility, assisted living facility, or otherwise, and such negligence can be either intentional or unintentional. But overall, this failure to properly care for an elderly person usually results in injury or harm to an elderly person. Such injury or harm can be as severe as that associated with elder abuse.

What are the indications of elder neglect?

The elderly community finds difficulty protecting themselves from potential danger, which is why neglect and abuse, unfortunately, so commonly occur. This is why as a family member, friend, or otherwise loved one to an elderly person, you must act as their defender and look out for warning signs. With that being said, common indications of elder neglect include the following:

  • An elderly person does not have clean clothing or appropriate clothing for the weather.
  • An elderly person has not been provided with the necessary devices (i.e., a cane, hearing aid, or glasses).
  • An elderly person has not been taking their prescribed medications.
  • An elderly person has been living in unsanitary (i.e., dirty or cluttered) or unsafe (i.e., fire hazards or no electricity) living conditions.
  • An elderly person has bedsores that they cannot fully explain.
  • An elderly person complains about a lack of supervision.
  • An elderly person complains about a lack of assistance with personal hygiene practices.
  • An elderly person complains about being hungry or thirsty.

What is the statute of limitations for an elder neglect claim?

If you pick up on any signs of elder neglect, it is important that you report it right away to local law enforcement and/or the California Department of Social Services. Once you place your loved one under immediate protection, then you may want to consider filing an elder abuse claim against the negligent party.

Importantly, there is a deadline for filing such a claim in the state of California. Otherwise known as the statute of limitations, this deadline is generally two years from your loved one’s incident. Failure to bring your claim forward on time will restrict you from attaining justice and recovering the compensation your loved one requires to heal. For more information, pick up the phone and call a skilled California elder abuse lawyer. We look forward to hearing from you.