While it is never appropriate to mistreat another person, there are certain classes of citizens who need special protection due to their particular vulnerability. Minors, especially infants and very young children, obviously fall into this category, but the elderly often do as well. While the aging process affects each of us differently, it is not unusual for people who are of advanced age to have physical, cognitive, or emotional issues that can make them especially susceptible to certain types of abuse, including physical, sexual, and financial mistreatment. This type of behavior should not be tolerated in society. Nashville elder abuse lawyer Randy Ratliff understands the serious harm that can occur when an elderly person is a victim of abuse. He is here to help hold responsible parties accountable for their actions. As an experienced elder law attorney, he can also help family members take action to prevent future harm in some instances.Common Symptoms of Elder Abuse
Elder abuse can occur in many settings, including a nursing home or assisted living center or even the victim’s own home. When an older person is physically, sexually, or emotionally abused in an institutional environment, it may be possible to hold the abuser and the abuser’s employer liable for damages, such as pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, and medical expenses. Punitive damages are a possibility if the conduct was especially egregious. Neglect is also a common problem that, while not as morally reprehensible as overt physical or sexual assaults, can still cause permanent impairments and even death. A nursing home negligence case may involve a lack of proper supervision, a misdiagnosis, a failure to treat complications of an illness, or issues like malnutrition, dehydration, and bed sores. Often, neglect is rooted in issues like understaffing or lack of staff training, and it is likely to continue unless someone speaks up for elderly people who are suffering. As an elder abuse attorney assisting families in Nashville and surrounding areas, Randy Ratliff is ready to do that.
If you are concerned that an elderly friend or relative is not receiving proper attention, there are some common symptoms that may serve as a “red flag.” These include bed sores, rapid weight loss, depression, dementia, a sense of helplessness, or decreasing functioning (either physical or psychological) that is not tied to an obvious medical condition. An unexplained and unexpected death could also be a sign that an elderly person was being abused.
Elder abuse may also take the form of financial dealings in which the abuser (who may be a relative, a friend, a neighbor, or another person in a position of trust with the elderly person) either overtly steals from the victim or takes advantage of them in a less obvious but still damaging manner. People who are isolated and lonely are particularly vulnerable to this type of abuse, as are people who are suffering from memory problems or who are simply naive.Speak with an Elder Abuse Lawyer in Nashville or Beyond
Depending upon the elder abuse situation in question, an attorney may be able to help the victim or the victim’s family prevent further abuse through the use of documents such as a power of attorney or living trust. Also, an attorney can help the victim or their family seek monetary damages from the abuser through a negligence claim or another legal proceeding. Since each situation is unique, and since there may be procedural deadlines such as a statute of limitations, it is important to seek legal guidance about a potential elder abuse situation as soon as possible. To schedule an appointment to discuss your circumstances, call Nashville elder abuse attorney Randy Ratliff at 615-656-8282 or contact us online. He assists people who need an elder law or estate planning lawyer throughout Davidson and Williamson Counties, including in Antioch, Hermitage, Madison, Goodlettsville, Joelton, Franklin, Brentwood, and Cool Springs.