As our parents and grandparents grower older, we may consider moving them to care facilities. No one likes the thought of it, but many of these facilities provide the daily attention and medical care our family members need. Despite our best intentions to keep them close, sometimes we just cannot do it all ourselves. Unfortunately, no matter how much research we do or care we take in choosing a place, there is the possibility that our loved ones will be treated poorly or subjected to financial abuse and exploitation.
Financial abuse of the elderly is, tragically, becoming a common problem. If you see signs of financial abuse or exploitation of a friend or family member by a nursing home or staff member, contact an Illinois elder abuse lawyer at Staver Accident Injury Lawyers, P.C. today at (312) 236-2900.
Elderly individuals are at risk for being physically, sexually, and financially abused. While the first two types of abuse are more readily understood and apparent, financial abuse can be difficult to detect. Even if there are signs something is wrong, you may not be sure it amounts to abuse or illegal activity.
Under the Illinois Nursing Home Act, financial exploitation is defined as “the use of an eligible adult’s resources by another to the disadvantage of that adult or the profit or advantage of a person other than that adult.” An individual or a business can be guilty of financially exploiting one or more elderly individuals. Through lies, false promising, threats, and other means, a person or business can obtain an elderly person’s money, real estate, and personal property. This type of abuse can range from a nurse stealing cash to a business having the elderly person sign over their investments and real estate.
Understanding the definition of financial abuse is crucial if you have a family member or friend in a health care facility. But in addition to understanding this type of abuse, it is best to know the signs to look for, including:
Under Illinois law, criminal financial exploitation of an elderly person is committed when a person in a position of trust and confidence takes an elder’s property by means of deception intimidation, or by illegally using their assets or resources. This is considered a felony level offense and punishments increase depending on how much is taken. If the amount taken is greater than $100,000, charges can be levied against the alleged offender within seven years of the original crime. If you suspect that a financial abuse against an elderly person has occurred in Illinois, you should report it to the State’s Attorney’s office.
If you believe your loved one is being financially taken advantage of, don’t delay, and call the compassionate and dedicated Illinois elder abuse lawyers at Staver Accident Injury Lawyers, P.C. at (312) 236-2900 or contact us online.
Your loved one worked hard to build their property and savings. They should be able to use their means to care for themselves and pass them on to their children and grandchildren.