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Manhattan Nursing Home Abuse Lawsuit

In many states throughout the country, it is mandatory for any concerned citizen to report instances of elder abuse. In New York, only those medical professionals who are bound by the ethics of their profession are required to report suspicions of elder abuse. Elder abuse in Manhattan and the surrounding areas isn’t just limited to physical abuse. It can also manifest as sexual, emotional, mental, or financial abuse.

Financial Abuse of Elders in Manhattan

According to a study from Cornell University, in 2008, only one in 44 New York cases of elder financial exploitation was reported to the authorities. Financial advisors are not among those who are required to report suspicions of abuse, meaning that many citizens who do not work in healthcare may not know what signs to watch for, or how to report abuse.

In 2009, a jury found that a New York woman named Brooke Astor was financially abused while she suffered from dementia. Those who have studied the case retrospectively have noted that the patterns of financial transactions would have raised a red flag if mandatory reporting laws were in place. The Metropolitan Life Insurance Company reported that in 2010, elderly clients lost as much as 12% of their total wealth to financial exploitation at the hands of family or caregivers.

How to Recognize Financial Abuse

If an elderly person lives in a Manhattan nursing home, it can be difficult to notice financial abuse, which does happen in medical care facilities. Stolen goods like jewelry and personal effects, a sudden loss of cash flow, or a sudden loss of Medicaid benefits could all be indicative of financial abuse.

While mandatory reporting isn’t required, any concerned party can contact 311 and be put in touch with the right authorities who will address financial abuse. In the case of suspected Medicaid fraud, the District Attorney’s office will head up the investigation.

Another option, for a senior citizen or a family member who has proof that financial exploitation or abuse occurred while in the care of a nursing facility, is to contact a lawyer who specializes in cases of elder abuse. There may also be a unit within the financial firm that the elderly person uses for money management that deals with elder abuse situations that could be helpful.

Manhattan District Attorney

In addition to investigating claims of financial abuse, the Manhattan District Attorney’s office also provides investigative services and prosecutes any case in Manhattan involving elder abuse at the hands of a nursing facility or a private individual.

These cases include domestic abuse and the abuse of power of attorney, including making medical decisions without the input of the elderly patient. The Elder Abuse Unit can be reached at 212-335-9007. They can assist with an Order of Protection and emergency housing if that is necessary for the situation, and they also consult with a case coordinator who works with all the proper authorities to try any cases of elder abuse.

Since 2015, over half a dozen cases of extreme forms of elder abuse have been tried by the Manhattan District Attorney. In addition to domestic abuse cases and robberies, many of these cases involved a caregiver, either privately or in the employee of a nursing home facility, who stole money from clients upon being charged to oversee their rent and other bills. In one case, as much as 260,000 dollars was stolen by a health aide.

Seeking help for these matters through the District Attorney, or through another financial institute with elder abuse units, can be done by the senior citizen involved, or by family members, close friends, medical professionals, or other concerned parties.

 

Sources:

 

http://manhattanda.org/resources-victims-elder-abuse

 

http://www.wsj.com/articles/officials-seek-clampdown-on-elder-fraud-1451434278

 

 

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