You put your aging mother or father into a Tennessee-based nursing home, hoping to provide your loved one with superior care. While your parent may not suffer physical abuse, that does not rule out other forms of abuse, such as financial.
WebMD describes financial abuse of the elderly and what to do about it. Understand how to protect your mother or father both physically and financially.
Breaking down financial abuse
Depending on your parent’s overall mental or physical health, you may have to help with finances. While looking over your loved one’s bank accounts, you may notice some odd withdrawals, ones your mother or father cannot explain. Or, there could be missing or suddenly altered legal documents. Both are examples of financial abuse. While missing bank account statements and unpaid bills could be signs of such conditions as Alzheimer’s or dementia, they could also be the work of unscrupulous nursing staff members taking advantage of residents.
Taking action on financial abuse
So, you think your loved one may be a victim of elderly financial abuse. What next? It is in everyone’s interest that you take action as soon as possible, no matter how negligible your suspicions may seem. Sit down and talk with your mother or father about your suspicions, explaining your concerns and your desire to help. Pay close attention to how your parent responds. Unusual reluctance to speak or outright silence could indicate signs of coercion or threats.
You may also need to contact Adult Protective Services to help you handle the situation. After making your report, an official investigates your concerns and ensures that your parent is safe.
Do not sit idly by if you suspect financial abuse of your mother or father. Talk with a legal representative to formulate a strategy.