The average life expectancy has now increased to nearly 80 in the United States, which means that a sizeable percentage of our population is now over the age of 60. Modern medicine and technology have made this feasible, as well as an ongoing knowledge about health and frequent doctor's visits. However, along with theaging of America comes the inevitable but difficult choice of either placing a loved one in a retirement home or hiring assisted living care. Along with this assisting living care comes the unfortunate reality that not everyone has honorable intentions in this industry. However, it has reached a level where families nearly assume that their loved ones have been subject to elder abuse or neglect while in the care of another. If you have been charged with an elder crime, do not hesitate to contact a skilled elder crimes attorney in San Jose, CA.
Elder Abuse in California
Based on the graying of America, many states, including California, have implemented laws that protect the elderly and enforce steep penalties and punishment ranges for those who take advantage or abuse the elderly. California defines elderly as anyone who is 65 years or older. California prohibits a person from causing physical pain or mental suffering to an elder adult, including those who are unable to care for themselves. California also provides for different levels of the burden of proof, depending on your interaction with the elder adult.
If you are the caregiver or custodian of the elder adult, the prosecutor must be able to provide that you willfully or criminally negligently committed elder abuse. If you have another type of relationship with the elder adult (aside from a caregiver or custodian), the prosecutor must be able to prove that you willfully or intentionally injured the elder adult. While many cases deal solely with physical injuries, many other cases carefully examine the psychological abuse that can be inflicted on the elder adult, such as fraud or deception. It is important that you speak with a San Jose elder abuse attorney as soon as possible if you are the caregiver of an elder adult and the family begins to suspect you have exerted undue influence over their family member.
Elder Neglect in California
Elder neglect is often quite similar to elder abuse in California, although it involves an indirect action, rather than a direct action. Elder neglect is a rising issue throughout California and involves the lack of care toward an elder result which can lead to physical and mental suffering. However, a prosecutor must be able to directly prove the intention of neglect in establishing a conviction for elder neglect.
Punishment Range and Defenses
Elder crimes are often misdemeanor offenses, but can rise to the level of a felony charge in extreme situations, or in situations where you have received a prior conviction for an unrelated crime. It is therefore important that you speak with a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible after your arrest, to begin building your defense. A misdemeanor conviction for elder abuse is punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $6,000. However, a felony offense will include heightened prison time and increased penalties, depending on the charges and any prior convictions.
Ahmed and Sukaram Law | San Jose Elder Crimes Lawyers
If you have been arrested on suspicion of elder abuse or elder neglgect, do not hesitate to contact the attorneys of Ahmed and Sukaram. Our attorneys, Nafiz Ahmed and Shari Sukaram, have years of experience in assisting our clients with their defenses against elder crime charges. Contact our San Jose defense firmtoday for your initial free consultation.