Beyond Physical Abuse: Other Common Forms of Nursing Home Abuse

14 December 2016
 Categories: , Blog

When people talk about nursing home abuse, they mainly focus on physical abuse of nursing home residents. Unfortunately, nursing home abuse can take many different forms other than physical abuse. Here are three other forms of abuse that your loved one may suffer in a nursing home:

Financial Abuse

Financial elder abuse takes many forms, but they all end with an elderly person losing their money or assets with monetary value. It can take different forms such as forgery, fraud, and theft. In most cases, these criminal acts are committed by those who clearly know or should know that the victim is an elder. In fact, elderly persons are mostly targeted by those who view them as gullible targets.

For example, a nursing home staff that uses an elderly resident's credit card to shop for personal items is guilty of financial abuse. A nurse who conspires with a resident's relative to forge a will with the intention is also guilty of financial abuse. A nursing home manager who forges a power of attorney and assumes control of a resident's financial assets is also guilty of financial abuse. 


Neglect occurs when a caregiver shirks their responsibilities for a nursing home resident. Neglect can take two forms: active and passive. Active neglect occurs when a caregiver intentionally refuses to care for an elderly person. For example, the nurse is who withholds food or medicine from a resident who refuses to give them glowing recommendations is guilty of active neglect. In most cases, those perpetrators of active neglect stand to gain something from their actions. Passive neglect, on the other hand, occurs when a caregiver unwittingly neglects their duty to a resident. For example, a caregiver who doesn't know that an elderly person requires a special diet, and doesn't give it to them, is guilty of passive neglect.

Psychological Abuse

The third example is psychological abuse, which occurs when someone intentionally inflicts emotional or mental harm on an elderly person. The hurt can take different forms such as threats and humiliation; it doesn't have to be verbal either.  For example, a nursing home staff who constantly mocks a resident's inability to take care of "simple" tasks such as dressing is guilty of psychological abuse. A caregiver who threatens a resident with harm if the resident reveals the caregiver's inadequacies is also guilty of psychological abuse.

Whenever your loved one suffers at the hands of another person in a nursing home, the responsible person needs to pay for the damages and hurt they have caused. It doesn't matter whether your loved one was neglected, physically assaulted or psychologically tortured. Talk to a nursing home abuse lawyer to help you figure out how to get legal redress.