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Reporting Elder Abuse in Carrollton

Elder abuse is a significant problem in our society and a serious public health concern. The 2010 Census recorded 40.3 million people in the U.S. who are 65 or older, making up 13 percent of the total population. It is estimated that by the year 2050, this population will have grown to account for 20 percent of the U.S. population and people age 85 or older will total 19 million. As this population continues to grow, so will the instances of elder abuse.

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) 1 in 10 people who live at home and are age 60 or older are victims of elder abuse, including exploitation and neglect. Unfortunately, it is difficult to obtain accurate numbers because so many go cases go unreported. This is attributed to several factors, including the person is afraid their abuser will retaliate if they report, they are unable to report, or the abuse is carried out by a family member and they don’t want to get them in trouble. With that said, if you believe a loved one may be getting neglected or abused, it is important you consult with a Carrollton nursing home abuse lawyer to discuss your options.

Types of Elder Abuse

There are six types of elder abuse that have been identified. Each of these has specific characteristics. These are all reportable types of abuse and if recognized in a situation, they should be reported.

  • Neglect – Failure by a person who has fiduciary responsibilities or caregiver provide care for an elder. Includes failure or refusal to provide basic needs like water, food, clothing, and other necessities as well as failure to pay for services related to home care.
  • Physical abuse – Physical force that may result in impairment, physical pain, and bodily injury. Includes acts of violence, physical restraints, inappropriate use of drugs, physical punishment, and force feeding.
  • Financial Abuse – Improper or illegal use of the property, funds, or assets of an elderly person. Includes stealing or misusing their money, cashing their checks without their consent, and deceiving or forcing them to sign any document.
  • Emotional Abuse – Any act that may diminish an elderly person’s self-worth, dignity, and identity. Includes infantilization, intimidation, humiliation, verbal assault, isolation, and confinement.
  • Abandonment – Desertion by a caregiver of an elderly person. Includes desertion at a public location, nursing facility, or hospital.
  • Sexual Abuse – Sexual contact that is non-consensual or if the person is not capable of giving consent. Includes sexually explicit photographing, unwanted touching, sexual battery or assault (sodomy or rape), and coerced nudity.

Self-neglect is also a reportable situation. This includes an elderly person who is unable to attend to their own needs including preparing and eating meals, hygiene, and other basic care.

How to Report Elder Abuse

Under Georgia law certain professionals are required to report suspected neglect, abuse, or exploitation. If these professionals fail to report the abuse, it a punishable offense as a criminal misdemeanor. People who are immune from liability (not legally required to report) are encouraged to report suspected abuse. The identity of the person making the report will be kept confidential within the confines of the law.

Reporting Elder Abuse in a Private Setting

When abuse of an elderly person is suspected, it can be reported to Adult Protective Services. Web and fax reports are accepted 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Reports by phone are accepted Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Report via web form

Referral via fax: 770-408-3001 PDF Referral MS Word Referral

Referral via toll free number: 1-866-55AGING (1-866-522-4464) Press “3”

If a person is in immediate need of help, you should call 911 immediately.

Reporting Elder Abuse in a Facility

Healthcare Facility Regulation (HFR) is a division of the Department of Community Health (DCH). It is responsible for certification, health care planning, oversight, and licensing of several different health care services and facilities within the state of Georgia. This includes nursing homes and other elder care facilities.

File a report via phone: 1-800-878-6442 (Leave a contact number and a staff member will return the call to take the report)

File a report via fax: 404-657-5731

Other Reporting Agency

The Georgia Department of Human Resources Division of Aging Services administers the Senior Adult Victim’s Advocate Program (SAVA). It provides support services to elders including information, access to support groups for victims, assistance helpline, understanding the legal system, help with court appearances, and other situations related to elder abuse. This can include helping them with reporting the abuse.

Call toll free: 1-888-774-5250

In metro Atlanta: 404-657-5250

If you suspect elder abuse, know a victim, or have been a victim, we are here to help. At Parian Law Firm we help people and we want to help you. Elder abuse is never right. Whether the abuse occurs in a private setting or in a health care or nursing facility, you need the representation of an experienced law firm. Call us and get the help that you need today.