The issue of elder abuse in Kentucky and all over the country goes beyond nursing homes and is now a growing problem, even in private residences and communities. According to the National Council on Aging, 1 in every 10 Americans 60 years old and over has had to deal with some form of elder abuse. Experts think the crime of elder abuse happens far more often than what is reported, and as the population ages, the problem is expected to get even worse.
In this post, Circeo Law Firm outlines what you need to understand about elder abuse in Kentucky – more importantly, what you need to do if you know anyone experiencing it:
Kentucky Elder Neglect and Abuse Law
Chapter 209 of the state’s revised statutes covers the protection of the elderly and other vulnerable adults. It addresses the welfare of anyone over the age of 18 who, due to mental or physical dysfunction, might be unable to manage their resources, perform daily activities, or protect themselves from neglect, exploitation, or hazardous or abusive situations without others assisting them.
- Neglect is a situation wherein an adult is unable to do or get for themselves the goods or services they need to maintain their health or welfare (self-neglect), or the adult is purposely being deprived of their needs by a caretaker.
- Exploitation refers to obtaining or using an adult’s resources, which may include funds, assets, or property, in a deceptive manner or with intimidation, with the intent of depriving that person of said resources.
- Abuse is an infliction of injury, intimidation, sexual abuse, unreasonable confinement, or punishment that leads to physical pain or mental harm.
Kentucky law also establishes that services are available to adults who cannot take care of themselves and gives anyone the authority to make a confidential criminal complaint if they have knowledge of abuse, neglect, or abuse of an adult in the state.
Reporting Elder Abuse in Kentucky
If you suspect an elderly you know is being abused, neglected, or exploited, it is essential to report it. In Kentucky, you can make an anonymous report to the Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS) via their 24-hour toll-free hotline at 1-877-597-2331.
The hotline is available 24/7 for anyone to call and report abuse or neglect. Non-emergency reports can also be made online. However, someone will only be available to review them during business hours on weekdays.
How Kentucky Enforces Elder Neglect and Abuse Laws
In Kentucky, elder abuse is a serious problem. The state has laws in place that aim to protect elders from abuse, and the Kentucky State Police enforce these laws.
Kentucky’s elder abuse laws are designed to protect elders from all forms of abuse and neglect. If you or an elder you know is being abused, you should also contact the Kentucky State Police immediately.
The Kentucky State Police have a special unit dedicated to investigating elder abuse cases. This unit is known as the Elder Abuse Investigation Unit, and it is staffed by experienced detectives who are specially trained to handle these types of cases.
As our loved ones age, they become more vulnerable to abuse and neglect. Unfortunately, elder abuse is all too common and often goes undetected. So if you are aware of neglect or abuse happening, it’s vital to seek legal help from a seasoned elder neglect lawyer.
An experienced lawyer can help you investigate the situation and take steps to protect your loved one’s rights. If elder abuse is taking place, the lawyer can help you take action to stop it and seek compensation for the harm that has been done.
Don’t wait to get help if you suspect elder abuse or neglect. Circeo Law Firm, an award-winning law firm in Lexington, KY, offers you the services of reliable elder abuse and neglect lawyers. Get in touch with Circeo Law Firm for a free consultation!