Elder Abuse Attorney Orange County

Our elderly population deserves to live their golden years with dignity and respect. They should not be neglected, mistreated, or abused. Elder abuse is a grave concern that demands immediate attention and action. It encompasses a range of maltreatment, from physical harm to emotional distress and neglect. At Ikuta Hemesath Law, we understand the severity of elder abuse cases and the profound impact they can have on individuals and their families. Our skilled team of elder abuse attorneys in Orange County stands ready to assist you in seeking justice for your loved ones and holding those responsible accountable.

California Law on Elder Abuse

Elder abuse is a serious offense under California law, specifically addressed under the Welfare and Institutions Code Section 15600 et seq. This section of the law is designed to protect elders (65 years and older) and dependent adults from abuse, neglect, and exploitation. Understanding the legal framework and the requirements to prove elder abuse is crucial for effectively addressing these cases.

Types of Elder Abuse Defined Under California Law

  1. Physical Abuse: This includes inflicting physical pain or injury upon an elder or dependent adult.
  2. Emotional Abuse: Also known as psychological abuse, it involves causing mental suffering through verbal or non-verbal acts.
  3. Neglect: The failure of a caregiver to provide necessary care, leading to harm or risk of harm.
  4. Financial Abuse: The illegal or unethical exploitation of an elder’s or dependent adult’s funds, property, or assets.
  5. Abandonment: The desertion of an elder or dependent adult by someone responsible for their care.
  6. Isolation: Restricting an elder or dependent adult’s social interactions, leading to emotional and physical harm.

Requirements to Prove Elder Abuse

To establish a case of elder abuse, certain elements must be proven:

  • Duty of Care: Establishing that the defendant had a duty to care for the elder or dependent adult.
  • Breach of Duty: Demonstrating that the defendant breached this duty through action or inaction.
  • Causation: Showing that the breach of duty directly caused harm to the elder or dependent adult.
  • Damages: Proving that the elder or dependent adult suffered actual harm or damages as a result of the abuse.

Our Expertise in Elder Abuse Cases

At Ikuta Hemesath Law, we have extensive experience in handling elder abuse cases against various entities, including Residential Care Facilities for the Elderly (RCFE), skilled nursing facilities, and hospitals. Our dedicated team understands the complexities involved in these cases and is committed to pursuing justice for our clients.

Cases Against Residential Care Facilities for the Elderly (RCFE)
RCFEs, also known as assisted living facilities, are meant to provide a safe and supportive environment for the elderly. However, instances of neglect and abuse in these facilities are not uncommon. We have successfully litigated cases where RCFEs failed to provide adequate care, leading to significant harm to residents. Our team meticulously investigates these cases, gathering evidence to prove negligence or abuse and holding these facilities accountable.

Cases Against Skilled Nursing Facilities
Skilled nursing facilities, or nursing homes, are supposed to offer higher levels of medical care to their residents. Unfortunately, some facilities fall short of these standards, resulting in severe consequences for the elderly. We have a proven track record of fighting for the rights of nursing home residents, ensuring that they receive the care they deserve and that negligent facilities face the consequences of their actions.

Cases Against Hospitals
Hospitals are expected to provide comprehensive medical care, but instances of elder abuse and neglect can occur even in these settings. Our legal team has the expertise to handle complex cases involving medical malpractice and elder abuse in hospitals. We work closely with medical experts to build strong cases, ensuring that hospitals are held responsible for any harm caused to elderly patients.

Types of Elder Abuse Cases We Handle

Physical Abuse
Physical abuse against elders can manifest in various ways, including severe burns, deep cuts and abrasions, fractures or broken bones, debilitating sprains, and unexplained bruising that raises concerns. It is essential to be vigilant about these signs, as they may indicate physical harm. Our experienced legal team is dedicated to building a strong case against the perpetrators of such abuses, ensuring that justice prevails.

Signs to look out for:

  • Unexplained bruises or injuries
  • Noticeable cuts and abrasions
  • Fractures or broken bones
  • Sprains without a clear cause
  • Severe burns or scalds

Emotional Abuse
Elder neglect often takes a toll on an individual’s emotional well-being, leading to persistent anxious behavior, deep depression, overall sadness, confusion, fear, and noticeable agitation. Recognizing these emotional signs is crucial, as they may be indicative of abuse.

Signs to look out for:

  • Persistent anxious behavior
  • Deep depression
  • Overall sadness
  • Confusion and disorientation
  • Expressions of fear
  • Noticeable agitation
  • Rapid weight loss or gain

Elder Neglect and Pressure Ulcers
Neglect can manifest in various ways, including dehydration, malnutrition, emotional distress, and more. One of the most severe consequences of elder neglect is the development of decubitus pressure ulcers, also known as bedsores. These ulcers are considered “never events,” meaning they should never occur in a properly managed care setting. Bedsores are preventable injuries that often result from prolonged pressure on the skin due to immobility, inadequate nutrition, poor hygiene, and lack of repositioning.

Pressure ulcers, or bedsores, develop when continuous pressure on the skin reduces blood flow to the area, causing the skin and underlying tissue to die. This can happen when an elderly person is bedridden or immobile for long periods without being turned or repositioned regularly. Early stages of pressure ulcers can be treated and prevented from worsening if proper care is provided. However, without adequate care, these ulcers can become severe, leading to infections, sepsis, and even death.

Contributing Factors:

  • Understaffing: Many facilities are understaffed, leading to inadequate care. Caregivers may be unable to turn and reposition patients regularly, increasing the risk of bedsores.
  • Undertraining: Proper training is essential for caregivers to recognize early signs of pressure ulcers and implement preventive measures. Undertrained staff may lack the necessary skills and knowledge, leading to neglectful care.
  • Inadequate Monitoring: Regular monitoring is crucial to identify and address early signs of bedsores. Lack of proper oversight can result in undetected and untreated pressure ulcers.


Signs to look out for:

  • Dehydration
  • Malnutrition
  • Lack of proper medical care or medication
  • Inadequate or inappropriate clothing
  • Emotional distress
  • Development of bedsores

Legal Violations

Elder abuse and neglect often involve violations of state and federal regulations, including Title 22 of the California Code of Regulations. These regulations set forth standards for the care and treatment of elderly residents in various care facilities. Failure to adhere to these regulations can result in severe harm to residents and legal consequences for the facilities involved.

Hiring an Elder Abuse Attorney in Orange County

When you suspect that a loved one is experiencing elder abuse, taking swift action is imperative. An elder abuse attorney in Orange County, such as the professionals at Ikuta Hemesath Law, can provide the expertise needed to navigate these complex cases. We invite you to reach out for a consultation, allowing us to guide you through the legal process and advocate for the rights and well-being of your loved ones. Don’t let elder abuse go unnoticed—contact us today and let us help you seek justice.

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