Fighting for justice and compensation for abuse throughout California’s Central Coast

At the Santa Barbara law firm of McCarthy & Kroes, our lawyers are especially concerned with issues of elder abuse and neglect. Elder abuse can be financial or physical, and it can be committed by close family members or complete strangers. Our elderly population is especially vulnerable to exploitation and abuse due to diminished physical and mental capacity, and is therefore especially deserving of legal protection.

Financial abuse

The elderly are vulnerable to all types of financial abuse, from simple scams to sophisticated frauds, including scams from the Internet, telephone marketing and unscrupulous door-to-door salesmen or “home repair” professionals. These con artists target unsuspecting seniors who have significant assets saved over a lifetime of hard work. Even seemingly legitimate businesses may take advantage of older customers by charging excessive fees or taking money up front and then not performing work as promised.

Elder financial abuse can also be committed by trusted friends or family members who use their position or relationship to exert undue influence, such as by enticing an older family member to draft a will provision they would not otherwise have drafted. This is often done in a subtle way, and proving the existence of undue influence is challenging. Through a power of attorney or other fiduciary relationship, a relative or other person may be guilty of abuse through financial mismanagement, such as borrowing money in the elder’s name, making fraudulent investments or siphoning funds from the elder’s bank accounts.

If you or an elderly loved one is the victim of financial exploitation, our elder law attorney can help you sue for breach of fiduciary duty, fraud, elder abuse and other violations of the law. Through swift, aggressive action, we help you end the abuse and seek a wide range of remedies, depending on the circumstances of your case, including restitution, fines, damages for pain and suffering, and other penalties and relief.

Physical abuse and neglect

Our lawyers help you take immediate, aggressive action to stop all types of abuse and neglect perpetrated by family members, friends, individual caregivers, nursing homes and long-term care facilities:

  • Physical elder abuse: Physical abuse includes hitting, slapping, punching, shoving, inappropriate use of drugs, chemical or physical restraints or confinement and inappropriate punishment.
  • Emotional abuse: Emotional abuse includes intimidation, threats, humiliation, blaming, isolation, terrorizing and other verbal and nonverbal psychological abuse.
  • Sexual abuse: Sexual abuse includes sexual assault, rape, molestation, showing pornographic material, forcing the elderly person to watch sex acts or forcing the elder to undress.
  • Neglect: Neglect includes intentional or unintentional abandonment, isolation, failure to provide for health and welfare or deprivation of necessary goods, services or treatment.

If you suspect nursing home abuse or neglect, financial exploitation or elder abuse by an individual, it is important to report it immediately. In many situations, abusers may face serious criminal penalties. In addition, an elder abuse lawyer can help victims and their families seek a wide variety of remedies through civil litigation, including obtaining an injunction to stop abusive or neglectful treatment or protective orders against abusers. We also help victims obtain damages for harm, including medical costs and compensation for pain and suffering.

Contact attorneys who care about protecting you and your elderly loved ones today

At McCarthy & Kroes, we are dedicated to helping all types of victims of abuse and neglect, including seniors and younger adults who are mentally incompetent or dependent on others for their care. If you suspect that you or a loved one has been the subject of abuse or neglect in Santa Maria, contact our knowledgeable lawyers online or call 805.564.2085 today.