Veterans’ neglect and abuse pose a serious problem in the United States. After spending time serving our country in the military, veterans should receive the highest level of care. Unfortunately, this does not always happen. Veterans living in long-term care facilities live at risk for neglect and abuse, which classifies as a type of elder abuse to the National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA).
Veterans’ abuse differs somewhat from other cases of elder abuse. A history of past trauma can make veterans even more vulnerable to mistreatment from their caregivers. They may fear reporting incidents for fear that they will suffer retaliation.
Even when veterans remain unable to report their own neglect and abuse, family members can stand up for them on their behalf. If you suspect that your loved one suffers from veterans’ abuse, contact Pintas & Mullins Law Firm to discuss your case with a member of our team. An Oak Park veterans neglect and abuse lawyer from our team may help to give you guidance about your legal options for recourse.
Signs of Veterans’ Abuse
Veterans may feel unwilling to report abuse; however, you can look for signs in facilities and on veterans. If you think that a loved one suffers abuse, some of the signs to look for include:
- Bruises: Bruises count as a sign that residents may experience physical abuse by caretakers. While veterans may experience accidents that result in bruises, continual bruises or multiple bruises may indicate abuse.
- Unexplained injuries: Anytime an accident leads to injury in a nursing facility, the facility keeps a detailed record of it. Veterans experiencing unexplained injuries may signal abuse or even neglect.
- Stressed/Aggravated staff members: When veterans suffer abuse, staff members may bear liability. Stressed or aggravated staff members may lose their composure and lash out at veterans in their care.
- Too few staff members: Not having enough staff members to provide care for every veteran in a facility can classify as a form of neglect or lead to several forms of abuse. With too few staff members, veterans may remain alone for extended periods without care or supervision. The limited amount of staff can also lead to overworked staff members who abuse veterans out of frustration.
- Timid/Scared veterans: Any sign that a veteran fears other people may classify as a sign of abuse. If your loved one acts timid or scared with people, a deeper look at his or her living conditions in the facility may help.
- Bedsores: Bedsores develop when someone immobile remains unturned in a bed or chair for too long. Veterans who develop bedsores sit or lie for long periods of time without care.
This represents just a short list of the possible signs of veterans’ abuse. If you believe that a loved one suffers abuse, you can look to an Oak Park veterans neglect and abuse lawyer who may help you build a case.
Determining Liability in Veterans’ Abuse Cases
When veterans’ abuse happens, the facility and care providers involved may bear responsibility. The key to holding them accountable involves determining their liability for veterans’ abuse. How investigators determine liability depends on the type of abuse and who committed the abuse. One type of veterans’ abuse involves financial abuse of the elderly, according to the National Research Council. Financial abuse happens when someone uses a veteran’s identity to steal money or other things of monetary value from the veteran. Veteran financial abuse often happens when a care provider takes money from the veteran by accessing personal accounts or using credentials to accept payments for the veteran. In these cases, the care provider may bear liability for financial losses, restitution, and pain and suffering.
In cases of physical abuse, the care provider also bears responsibility; however, the facility may also share liability if it does not take appropriate measures to stop the abuse from happening. Lawyers may help find evidence and identify responsible parties. Facilities that provide care have an obligation to protect their clients even from the care providers they employ. Your Oak Park veterans neglect and abuse lawyer may investigate the care provider and the facility to include everyone who bears liability.
For a free legal consultation with a Veterans Neglect and Abuse Lawyer serving Oak Park, call (800) 794-0444
Long-Term Impacts of Veterans’ Neglect and Abuse
While the impact and response to veterans’ abuse (and elder abuse in general) focus on the short-term effects, the National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA) reports that abuse of any kind can have long-term effects as well. NCEA divides these effects into three categories:
- Physical impacts: Physical abuse can lead to permanent disabilities and injuries. For example, bedsores can leave lasting tissue damage that may not heal or take a very long time to heal, making it hard for seniors to stay active.
- Psychological impacts: Psychological abuse can lead to lasting trauma that causes physical and mental stress for seniors.
- Financial impacts: Financial abuse can drain seniors’ finances and lead to a loss of care if the funds are not recovered.
The long-term impacts of senior abuse can make it difficult for seniors to maintain their health and quality of life. If you think that one of your loved ones suffers abuse, you can contact the office of a veterans’ neglect and abuse lawyer as soon as possible to get your loved one legal support.
Oak Park Veterans Neglect and Abuse Lawyer Near Me (800) 794-0444
Discuss Your Veterans’ Neglect and Abuse Case
If your loved one suffered as the victim of veterans’ neglect or abuse, you may experience stress trying to figure out your next steps. Report the abuse to the correct authorities. Afterward, you have the right to seek legal representation to pursue a potential case. Contact Pintas & Mullins Law Firm to schedule a free consultation to discuss your possible veterans’ neglect and abuse case.