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Kansas City Elder Sexual Abuse Attorneys
Sexual Abuse & Assault in Nursing Homes
Sexual abuse in nursing homes and assisted living facilities is relatively rare, but it happens more often than many people realize. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), sexual abuse is the least common type of nursing home abuse in the U.S.—yet as many as 2.6% of older adults in institutional settings suffered sexual abuse (as reported by both older adults and their proxies, as well as staff) in 2017. And, according to a report from the Administration for Community Living (ACL), more than 20,000 complaints involving sexual abuse in nursing homes were filed over the past 20 years.
At the Law Office of Tom Wagstaff Jr., we believe that even a single act of abuse against an elderly individual is one too many. If you or your loved one suffered sexual abuse at the hands of a trusted caregiver, nursing home, or long-term care facility, you have the right to take legal action. By filing a claim, you can not only seek fair compensation for your medical expenses and other damages, but you can also work to hold the liable party accountable for the immense pain and suffering they have caused.
To learn more, including how our Kansas City elder sexual abuse attorneys can help you with your claim, call (816) 597-4556 or contact us online for a free, confidential consultation.
What Is Sexual Abuse?
Sexual abuse includes any unwanted or nonconsensual sexual conduct, including sexual acts and groping. When a person cannot legally grant consent—due to age, impairment, or other—any sexual act committed against them by another can be classified as abuse.
Some examples of sexual abuse include:
- Attempted rape
- Forced sexual acts
- Exposing oneself
- Unwanted kissing or touching
- Preventing someone from protecting themselves from sexually transmitted infections (STIs)
Sexual abuse and assault of all kinds are never acceptable. If you believe that you or someone you love has been the victim of sexual abuse in a nursing home or similar setting, take immediate action. If you believe that you or your loved one are in immediate danger, call 911. In all other instances, you may report known or suspected elder sexual abuse to law enforcement and/or the appropriate state agency.
What Are the Signs of Elder Sexual Abuse?
Elderly individuals who have experienced sexual abuse may be unwilling or afraid to report the abuse. Others, including those with mental impairments, may be incapable of reporting it or even recognizing that what they have experienced constitutes abuse. For these reasons, it is very important that family members and loved ones know the signs of elder sexual abuse.
Some of the most common signs of sexual abuse in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities include:
- Unexplained injuries, including bruises, scratches, and scrapes
- Injuries to or near the groin, thighs, genitals, or female breasts
- Newly developed sexually transmitted infections (STIs)
- New or worsened depression, anxiety, and other mental health conditions
- Withdrawal, agitation, irritability, and mood swings
- Torn, damaged, or stained clothing
- Difficulty walking or sitting
- Changes in sleep patterns (insomnia, excessive sleep, fatigue, etc.)
- Apparent fear of being around a caregiver or resident
If you notice these or any other signs of nursing home sexual abuse, contact the appropriate authorities right away. Then, reach out to our team at the Law Office of Tom Wagstaff Jr. to learn how we can help you and your loved one seek justice.
Who Is Liable for Nursing Home Sexual Abuse?
Caregivers, fellow residents, and even trusted friends and loved ones may commit acts of sexual abuse and violence against elderly individuals. When such incidents occur in nursing homes, long-term care facilities, and similar settings, the facility itself may be liable.
Nursing homes and other care facilities have a responsibility to their residents. They must take all necessary measures to protect their safety, health, and wellbeing. When they fail to uphold this duty, leading to abuse, these facilities can be held liable for victims’ damages.
In many cases, the individual abuser can also be held liable. It is important that you speak with a knowledgeable and experienced attorney, like those at the Law Office of Tom Wagstaff Jr., who can review the details of your case and determine how to proceed. Our Kansas City nursing home sexual abuse attorneys pursue all possible avenues of compensation when it comes to maximizing our clients’ recoveries. We are committed to holding all responsible parties accountable as we fight for justice for you and your family.
What Types of Damages Are Available in Elder Sexual Abuse Cases?
Every case is different; the exact types of damages you may be entitled to recover will depend on the various details of your case.
That being said, many plaintiffs in these types of cases are able to seek compensation for the following damages:
- Medical expenses
- Financial loss
- Mental and physical pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Anxiety and depression
Sometimes, we can even seek punitive damages. Also known as exemplary damages, punitive damages are meant to punish defendants who cause injury and psychological harm through egregious or gross negligence, as well as intentional acts of violence.
Let Our Compassionate Legal Team Fight for You
Led by founding attorney, Tom Wagstaff, our team truly cares about the individuals and families we serve. We handle every case as though it were our only one, and we treat every client like a member of our own family. Our Kansas City nursing home sexual abuse lawyers take the time to get to know each client, listen to their story, and share how they can help them navigate the legal system as they seek the justice they are owed.
We represent clients in all types of nursing home abuse and neglect cases throughout Missouri and Kansas. Our team understands the sensitive nature of these cases and will never ask for more details than are completely necessary to effectively pursue your claim. We do not collect any attorney fees unless we successfully recover a settlement or verdict for you.
Call (816) 597-4556 or reach us online using our secure contact form today to request a free and confidential consultation with a member of our legal team.
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