- Elder Law
- Family Law
Fewer things make this commentator more outraged than learning about abuse, exploitation, or neglect of the elderly or disabled. It is not unusual for an elderly person to be isolated with few (if any) visitors from the outside world. If the elder or disabled person is unable to drive, socialize with others, or use a phone, he can be trapped where his medication, food, water, money, and even human contact is controlled by an unscrupulous person(s). In many cases of abuse, the motivation is to control the elderly person’s financial resources, be it monthly Social Security funds, savings, and valuable personal property. Abusers and exploiters can be the person’s own family, paid caretaker or so-called friend.
In addition to abuse at the hands of family and third parties, an elderly person living alone may be incapable of caring for himself due to dementia or physical limitations. In such circumstances he may be at risk for mal-nutrition, falls, missed medication, or living in an unsafe environment (e.g., home needing maintenance or lacking utilities).
If one is concerned that an elderly or disabled person is at risk due to abuse or the inability to provide for his own care, one should contact the Texas Department of Adult Protective Services and make a report.
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