Laws and definitions of elder abuse and neglect vary from state to state, but broadly defined, abuse may be:
- Physical abuse: Inflicting physical pain or injury on a senior (slapping, bruising or restraining by physical or chemical means).
- Sexual Abuse: Non-consensual sexual contact of any kind.
- Neglect: The failure by those responsible for food, shelter, health care, or protection for a vulnerable elder.
- Exploitation: The illegal taking, misuse, or concealment of funds, property, or assets of a senior for someone else’s benefit.
- Emotional Abuse: Inflicting mental pain, anguish, or distress on an elder person through verbal or nonverbal acts (humiliating, intimidating, or threatening).
- Abandonment: Desertion of a vulnerable elder by anyone who has assumed the responsibility for care or custody of that person.