carolsmom Posted November 2009

accused of abusing mother, and innocent, what to do

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i have been turned in to adult protective for abuse of my mother. adult protective has taken statements from my mother and others and i believe they think i am abusive. i am just crused. i gave up career and life to care for her. do i need attorney, and should i file charges for false statements made about me.

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msdiva Nov 2009
U MUST HAVE PROOF THAT UR NOT ABUSING HER AND IF THE PEOPLE THEY INTERVIEWED HAS TO HAVE PROOF ALSO HERE SAY IS NOT A ISSUE IT WHAT THEY SEE
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soneal09 Nov 2009
Has your mother been diagnosed with any kind of dementia? Start there. Cooperate with the investigation if you have nothing to hide. Neglect is abuse. LIke not getting her the medical care she needs. Spending her money without permission or accountablity is financial exploitation. What kind of abuse is she claiming?
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EXPERT Carol Bradley Bursack Nov 2009
Sad to say you may need an attorney. Does your mother have dementia? Can you find people who have seen you with her to take your side.

This isn't unusual, but it has become more common now to report people who an elder accuses of abuse (and of course if there is abuse, they should be reported).

But there are many cases where dementia enters in and abuse is not the issue, it's the elder's memory and/or paranoia that is the issue. Still, once reported to social services, a situation becomes more serious. I'd start looking for people to back you up. If it goes too far, you may need legal help. I can see why you are crushed.
Carol
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donahueg Nov 2009
Usually, claims to APS do not get this far (interviews, etc.) So you are right to take it seriously. However, if her claims are not credible and you are confident they are false, don't worry. Be open and honest with the social workers and see if that settles the matter. I would not get a lawyer unless the police take action AND the District Attorney's Office brings charges against you (which is highly unlikely).

I wonder does your mother have dementia? People with Alzheimer's will often accuse people of stealing from them or of holding them against their will. An APS worker will usually pick up on that, they have lots of experience with both real abuse as well as imagined abuse.

Speaking of elder abuse, the most common are physical and financial. As long as you are not beating her, or draining her bank accounts, you should be OK.

Finally, assuming that her claims are completely a figment of her imagination; by bringing these charges against you she is destroying whatever trust you have between you, and few people would blame you if you washed your hands of her and walked away.

But I will add one more thing. Assuming that you are not abusing her, you may want to ask yourself if you have perhaps gone a little overboard in trying to help and protect her? Sometimes well intentioned family members will dominate an older relative in an honest desire to help them. So ask yourself - are her charges a reaction to your interference with her self will. I only mention this last part if perhaps you may be wondering WHY she doing this...nevertheless good luck, I hope it resolves quickly for your sake.
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Sad when things come to this. Prayer necessary.
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what state do you live in , this matters
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Why does it matter?
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Different States have different abuse laws. California is the worse. Many States have no abuse laws. Many States mirror child abuse while others have their own set of laws.
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Where do we find the laws that apply to our state?
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I have a research paper that I did . There are law libraries. Nexis Lexius on line? If you wish me to respond about a particuliar State I would be happy to. If you go to your cabinet online there is a chance that you can do a key word search. If you call your department of aging in your State there is a good chance that they will let you know. I live in Kentucky. We have laws that are very clear about elder abuse. But they are only punishable against a Caregiver. So if another takes advantage of a elder then it is a different set of laws. It can get confusing. I am not a lawyer but a PhD student studying Gerontology and law. When I get my degree in law I would be better able to say. We have FREE law clinics available to answer questions such as these as well. Many states do.
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