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Facts regarding elder abuse in Illinois

Elder abuse is a large problem that may go unnoticed by professionals or unreported by victims. In many cases, victims refuse to report the abuse because they fear retaliation or don't want to get a family member in trouble. Recently published statistics regarding elder abuse found that roughly 10 percent of elderly adults were abused in the last 12 months.

More cases of elder abuse are being reported according to Adult Protective Services. People in all 50 states have access to APS if they need assistance when they suspect elder abuse. However, statistics indicate that the vast majority of cases go unreported. In New York, it is suspected that for every case reported, as many as 24 are not reported.

Financial abuse of elderly folks was the most common form of abuse. Roughly 4.1 percent of elder abuse revolved around the financial exploitation of an older person. Among nursing home residents surveyed in 2000, 44 percent said that they had been abused. In addition, 95 percent said that they had been neglected or had known of others who had been neglected. According to a 2008 study, 70 percent of nursing homes missed at least one case of elder abuse.

Those who have been abused by a relative or in a nursing home may wish to file a personal injury suit against the abuser. If the elderly person dies, it may be possible for the family to file a wrongful death suit. A personal injury attorney may be able to help with either type of case. If successful, it could result in the elderly person or the family winning compensation for medical bills, final expenses and other costs related to the caregiver's negligence.

Source: National Center on Elder Abuse , "Statistics/Data", November 25, 2014 

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