Articles Tagged with california elder abuse lawyer

cristian-newman-63291-199x300The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that one in four people over the age of 65 years falls each year. Of these falls, one in five leads to a serious injury like a traumatic brain injury or a broken bone. In fact, falling is the most common cause of concussions and more serious traumatic brain injuries. Following these falls, 2.8 million seniors are treated in emergency rooms for injuries and more than 800,000 of these seniors are hospitalized.

Many falls are related to medical conditions and age-related changes. However, they are not always innocent accidents. Seniors face a greater risk of falling when they are the victims of neglect and abuse. If your loved one has suffered one or more falls and you believe it is because of abuse or neglect, contact our experienced San Francisco elder neglect and abuse attorneys at Brod Law Firm immediately. We will thoroughly review your loved one’s situation to advise you on how to get them into a safer situation and their right to seek compensation for their injuries.

Falls Have Tragic Consequences

dan-gold-272398-copy-300x169There are a few habits elderly individuals keep up as long as they can. One of these is heading to the salon or barber to have their hair cut. Many elderly men and women rely on this routine not only to maintain their hygiene and preferred style, but also to maintain their social connections. Many individuals have gone to the same salon or shop for years. Now, with California’s new law, the salon professionals working with these men and women will be in a better position to notice signs of elder abuse and neglect.

California AB 326

In late September, California Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law AB 326, which requires the State Board of Barbering and Cosmetology (BBC) to develop and adopt a course that covers physical and sexual abuse awareness for all of their licensees by July 1, 2019. Under the new law, physical and sexual abuse includes domestic violence, sexual assault, human trafficking, and elder abuse. This information must be taught in schools approved by the BBC just like other health and safety courses that cover hazardous substances and basic labor laws. This new requirement will impact approximately 550,000 professionals, including barbers, cosmetologists, estheticians, manicurists, and more.

christian-langballe-78684-copy-300x200An audit conducted by Daniel Levinson, Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, found that elder abuse and neglect is a significant concern for Medicare beneficiaries and that the Medicare program currently has inadequate procedures to ensure abuse or neglect are identified and reported in accordance with legal requirements.

If you have a loved one living in a nursing home and you believe that he or she is being neglected or abused, contact an experienced San Francisco elder abuse attorney at Brod Law Firm right away. While Medicare mandates that all suspected abuse or neglect of elderly or patients be reported to the police immediately by the facility’s staff, this is often not the case. Many episodes of abuse or neglect go unnoticed and unreported, leaving your and other people’s loved ones in danger.

The Medicare Audit

andres-de-armas-103880-copy-300x200The opioid crisis in the U.S. continues to spread and at this point, few families and individuals are left unscathed. In addition to the deep physical and psychological impact an addiction has on a person, it also has profound effects on that person’s family. This is one of the ways in which the opioid crisis is affecting more and more seniors. While elderly individuals can be addicted to opioid painkillers themselves, they are also often taken advantage of, neglected, and abused by those suffering from this affliction.

If you or an elderly loved one have been physically, emotionally, or financially injured by someone addicted to drugs, contact your local senior social services or law enforcement to ensure you or loved one can get to or create a safe environment. Next, contact an experienced San Francisco elder abuse attorney from Brod Law Firm to learn about your rights.

How Opioid Addiction Lends Itself to Elder Abuse

andres-de-armas-103880-copy-300x200Under the California law, the End of Life Option Act, which went into effect June of 2016, terminally ill patients have the right to request life-ending medications. They must do so in a specific way and endure a waiting period before they can receive the drugs. However, the way the law is set up, physicians and medical facilities do not have to participate. Individual doctors can refuse to offer the medications as an end of life option, while others are prohibited from doing so by their employer’s guidelines.

In addition to the option to not participate in physician-assisted suicide, doctors do not have to warn patients upfront that they do not provide this end of life option or help patients find a physician who will. As was the case with Judy Dale, who was denied life-ending medication. Dale’s family, who watched her suffer while trying to find another physician to help her, is now suing University of California San Francisco (UCSF) Medical Center for fraud and elder abuse.

The Dale Family’s Suit

parker-byrd-139348-copy-300x200A new website, Choose Well, is trying to help families in San Diego find safe and quality nursing homes for their loved ones. After seniors lost their lives in negligent assisted-living facilities and a San Diego Union-Tribune investigation uncovered a significant amount of neglect and abuse in area nursing homes, San Diego County decided it was time to do something. This website is the city’s attempt to be more proactive about protecting seniors and helping their families make difficult choices like putting their elderly loved ones into nursing homes.   

San Diego Union-Tribune Investigation

In 2013, an in-depth investigation by San Diego Union-Tribune found that at least 27 seniors had died in San Diego County facilities due to neglect in a five-year period. The investigation found substandard care, neglect, and abuse ran rampant because of poor state oversight and little-to-no public transparency. When residents die due to neglect or abuse, facilities might face an investigation and a minimal fine. However, in many cases, state authorities never investigated. In fact, the Union-Tribune found that in the five-year period, complaints of poor care rose 13%, yet the number of state penalties declined 30%.

milind-kaduskar-87650-copy-300x300Certain areas of the U.S., particularly the west coast and southwest, are known for their high temperatures. Temperatures can stay in the 90s and 100s for weeks or months at a time. Unfortunately, this excessive heat has already led to fatalities this year. Santa Clara County officials confirmed in June that two elderly residents passed away due to hyperthermia, which is the condition of the body’s internal temperature becoming too high and the body being unable to cool itself down.

Elderly individuals, meaning those over the age of 60, are particularly vulnerable to heat-related illnesses and death. As summer fully sets in and California experiences very high temperatures, it is crucial that individuals and facilities take extra precautions to protect seniors from the heat.

Elderly are Particularly Vulnerable to Heat-Related Illnesses and Death

cristian-newman-63291-199x300When you have elderly parents in nursing homes, it can be difficult to monitor their health and safety. You are not around every day to ensure that they get enough food and water, are properly bathed, receive their medications, and are not neglected or abused. You may not even be able to see your loved ones each week if you live far away. This can enable nursing home staff and others to take advantage of your parent’s situation, either neglecting to give them the care they need or emotionally, physically, or sexually abusing them. If you have begun to notice signs of abuse when you visit, you are probably wondering what you should do. Where do you turn when the people who are supposed to care for your loved ones are harming them?

If you suspect your elderly mother or father is being abused at their care facility, take the following steps:

  • Speak with a facility administrator: If you believe something is wrong, you need to speak with the management of the facility as soon as possible. This is the best time to gauge their reaction and take careful note of how they try to rectify – or explain away – the situation. If you see no changes in the following days or weeks, move head through more formal channels.

christian-langballe-78684-copy-300x200Elderly individuals in California often become isolated over time. As family members and friends pass away, become less mobile, or move away, older individuals may find themselves living alone with few, if any, people to interact with. This isolation can lead to significant mental and physical ailments and puts individuals at risk for neglect and abuse by caretakers and financial scams. Fighting elderly isolation is essential in improving older individual’s health as well as protecting them from neglect and abuse.

Many of California’s Elderly Live in Isolation

It is not simply that we think elderly individuals are more likely to suffer mental health issues or additional physical medical problems, it is a statistical fact. Research conducted by the University of California, San Francisco, found that 18% of seniors in the state live alone and 43% reported feeling lonely on a regular basis. The same study found older individuals who reported feeling lonely had an increased risk of death by 45% and isolated elderly had a 59% higher risk of mental and physical decline compared to more social older individuals. Physicians across the state regularly witness the negative effects of isolation, which greatly contribute to an early death.

taduuda-76960-copy-300x200Three Sonoma County contractors are facing up to 50 felony and misdemeanor charges after an investigation led by the California Contractors State License Board found they were scamming customers. Some of the charges include grand theft, burglary, diversion of construction funds, conspiracy, and elder abuse.

Contractors Took Advantage of Clients

Tony Joseph Goodwin and Samuel Williams of Goodwin Millworks are accused of taking advantage of private consumers and non-profit organizations that house citizens with developmental disabilities. They are accused of unlawfully obtaining about $566,000 from their victims. The non-profits paid more than $460,000 for work on two different homes, which were abandoned by the contractors. They then had to pay an additional $685,000 to another contractor to complete the unfinished work.