What You Can Do about Elder Abuse or Neglect

If you have become aware of a situation where an older person may be the victim of abuse or neglect, there are several steps you can take to help.

When the situation in question is threatening, serious or dangerous, your first response should be a call to the police or 911. Otherwise, you can contact Adult Protective Services (APS) at 1-888-APS-TENN in Tennessee and 1.866.55AGING in Georgia. They will have contact resources for your area.

If you are concerned about elder abuse or neglect at a nursing home or other facility for older adults, such as assisted living, the State Long-Term Care Ombudsman would be an appropriate contact. (TN# 615.741.2056 / GA# 888.454.5826)

At the national level, there are several agencies involved in the protection of older adults, including the following:

· Office for Victims of Crime - Elder Abuse and Mistreatment at the US Department of Justice. Their focus is on helping victims.

· National Committee for the Prevention of Elder Abuse. This group protects the "safety, security, and dignity of America's most vulnerable citizens," and offers many important resources.

According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, there are several signs that could mean an elderly person is suffering abuse or neglect. (See our blog - Warning Signs of Elder Abuse.) You do not have to produce actual proof when filing a claim. These resource agencies and our attorneys will work with you to protect elder adults in these difficult situations.

Contact our office immediately if you suspect abuse or neglect.

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