When Tennessee residents think about elder abuse, they may only think about a lack of care or mistreatment from nursing staff. However, there are actually different types of behavior that can be considered elder abuse. Further, elder abuse can be committed by anyone who has a special relationship with the elderly person, such as a spouse, family member or hired caretaker.
Physical, emotional and sexual abuse may be the most commonly known forms. Physical abuse occurs when a person inflicts physical pain on the elderly person or purposefully deprives them of needed care. Emotional abuse occurs when a person causes the elder to be in distress or inflicts emotional pain on the elder. Sexual abuse occurs when a person makes unwanted sexual contact of any kind or forces an elderly individual to witness sexual acts.
Other types of elder abuse can include exploitation, elder neglect and abandonment. Exploitation occurs when a person illegally uses the elder's financial resources, assets or property. Neglect occurs when a person responsible for caring for the elderly individual fails to provide them with basic needs, like food and shelter. Finally, abandonment occurs when a person responsible for caring for the elderly person deserts them.
It is not uncommon for elders to experience more than one form of elder abuse, especially if the elderly individual is living in a nursing home. If a person has evidence that a loved one suffered elder abuse of any kind while living in a nursing home, an attorney may assist with filing a lawsuit against the employees responsible for the abuse and the nursing home facility where the abuse occurred. Not only may the attorney seek compensation for injuries and mental distress suffered by the elderly individual, but it may also try to get the nursing home shut down or have the employees removed.