Seniors Suffering During The Pandemic
The Hidden Reality of Elder Abuse
What Protections You Can Still Take During The Pandemic
The ongoing pandemic has left seniors more isolated and at risk of abuse than every before. The statistics are bearing that out as county after county throughout California, including here in Napa, report significant spikes in every form of elder abuse since the pandemic began. But statistics alone do not tell the entire story; since the vast majority of elder abuse cases never is reported the numbers can never tell the full story, especially now. As the pandemic lingers, even the most compassionate of caregivers and family members are experiencing frustration, exhaustion, anger and fatigue as the months drag on. But there is no excuse for abusing an older person. Do not shut your mind off from seeing things that are wrong even if this pandemic has exhausted you. Right now, seniors are truly in a desperate and dangerous situation and those who would abuse them will get away with it if we do not act to protect older persons. The Napa elder abuse attorneys at Evans Law Firm, Inc. represent injured seniors and their families here in Napa and throughout California. Our elder abuse litigators can be reach at (415)441-8669.
If you have a loved one who is under the care of an in-home caregiver or about to be, one of the most important steps you can take is to check out any caregiver – and the agency you are working with – thoroughly before you hire them. Napa County requires independent caregivers or home care aides to be background checked and registered through the State. Registration means the independent caregiver or home care aide has passed a DOJ and FBI background check and has verified that they are free of active tuberculosis. Check the California Department of Health’s Home Care Aide Registry database to check an independent home care aide’s status: California Home Care Aide Registry. Also run a check on the agency itself to see if there have been reported complaints or citations against it. Ask for and really check all references of other patients. Once you have fully vetted and hired a caregiver, keep up your vigilance in monitoring your loved one’s care. Keep valuables locked up and do not have cash, credit cards or confidential information near at hand. Never ever let a senior give a caregiver a Power of Attorney. Speak to your loved one alone (over the phone, Zoom or Facetime if in-person visits are unsafe) and look for signs of abuse or neglect. If you suspect any problem, call elder counsel such as the elder attorneys at Evans Law Firm.
Evans Law Firm Represents Injured Seniors
If you have any suspicions whatsoever that your loved one is suffering any kind of abuse, call us. Do not let warning signs like bruises, or personality changes, or silence pass by unnoticed. Keep an eye on all bank statements and financial records. If your loved one has an in-home caregiver you may want to talk to your loved one about having the bank statements sent to you so no one can intercept them at the senior’s home. Pour over ATM transactions and credit card bills; our elder abuse litigators note that financial abusers generally start off with small amounts in order to see what they can get away with. If they think they can take $50 here or there or make a few personal purchases with a credit card, the theft is likely to continue and grow. Always act on your instincts and call us if you suspect any problem. Our elder abuse litigators know how to investigate cases of physical and financial abuse and how to pursue all remedies available under California law which include getting stolen money back (restitution), undoing any trusts or contracts the abuser may have fraudulently created (rescissions), damages for pain and suffering, punitive damages where available and an award of the attorneys’ fees and expenses you’ve incurred in bringing your case. We will hold all parties responsible for the abuse to count, which can include the owners of home health care agencies and nursing homes.
Ingrid M. Evans and our other Napa elder abuse attorneys can be reached at (415) 441-8669, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.