The frequent visits that you made to your grandmother’s house are some of the most fond memories you have of your childhood. As you grew older and where able to drive yourself to her small hometown with a population of 432, you were able to not only visit her, but also take her on drives. Short drives to the country to buy the farm fresh eggs that she liked so much. Long drives a few hours from her home to have dinner with relatives who she wanted to visit. Those times in the car were hours of retold stories from her childhood that you will never forget.
Unfortunately, your grandmother is no longer living in her own home, and even though your parents helped her find a great residential facility, your family fears that this sweet grandmother in your memories is not getting the care she deserves. In fact, you fear that she and the other residents in the home are victims of types of elder abuse that you would rather not have to think about. From questionable financial practices to neglect, these types of elder abuse, and other problems, need to be addressed immediately.
Alarmingly, the 2010 Investor Protection Trust Elder Fraud Survey found that 20% of Americans over 65 has been victimized by a financial fraud. Some of these fraudulent activities are caused by the institutions where the elders are staying, some are the result of illegal marketing schemes that make their way across the country.
Statistics show that the annual financial loss by victims of elder financial exploitation were estimated to be $2.9 billion in 2009. This number is a 12% increase from the year 2008. What are you doing to make sure that your parent or grandparent is not a victim of these types of elder abuse? Whether you fear that your loved one is a victim of financial elder abuse or you worry that improper care is the issue, it is possible that you may need to seek legal advice in addressing the problem. Major financial exploitation among the elderly was self-reported in a study at a rate of 41 per 1,000 surveyed. This rate of financial elder abuse is higher than self-reported rates of emotional, physical, and sexual abuse or neglect. No matter which category your loved one’s abuse falls under, seeking an immediate solution is in everyone’s best interest.
Elder abuse facts and elder abuse statistics indicate that even if you take the proper initial steps in finding care for your aging loved ones, it is important to keep close watch for any physical signs of abuse, as well as financial indicators. Make sure that your memories of your grandparent are the happy ones of retold stories and long car drives to visit relatives, not of neglected and harmful care.