Concerned that an elder in your life is being mistreated at a Virginia nursing home?  You may be wondering about the difference between “abuse” and “neglect” as it pertains to Virginia elders.


Make no mistake: both elder abuse and elder neglect are crimes in Virginia – the law is very clear on this.


Elder abuse when somebody deliberately and willfully inflicts physical or mental pain or anguish on a nursing home or assisted living resident.  It can also be abuse if an elder is restrained unreasonably (i.e. physically restrained in a bed with straps, which is sometimes done to avoid falls).


Elder neglect is when somebody fails to provide for an elder, whether by failing to provide enough food or drink, failing to give needed medication, failing to change sheets or bedpans, or failing to provide necessary medical or social service.


The difference can be simplified as: abuse is when somebody does something to an elder, whereas neglect is when somebody fails to do something for an elder.  Both abuse and neglect can lead to injury, suffering, and even death.


Do you suspect that a loved one is being taken care of poorly – or not being taken care of at all?  Please don’t wait for the situation to get worse!  Contact our compassionate and discrete elder abuse & neglect attorneys today – we’ll help guide you with how to handle your situation.

Andrew Thomas
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Civil litigation attorney in Virginia and is AV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell.
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