Seniors are often frail, vulnerable, suffering from dementia, and may not be able to defend themselves, so crimes against the elderly can carry severe penalties in Illinois. Whether the crime happens in a home, nursing home or other care facility, individuals accused of elder abuse could face large fines and even time in prison.
Illinois protects the elderly through the Illinois Elder Abuse and Neglect Act, which applies to anyone over the age of 60. This law protects senior citizens from abuse, including:
If you have been accused of elder abuse, you need legal assistance. The seasoned and experienced Illinois elder abuse defense lawyers at Wolfe & Stec, Ltd., know the law, the courts and the judges, and are aware that many times accusations of elder abuse are false. We closely examine evidence and aggressively defend clients who are charged with elder abuse.
We offer a free consultation to examine your individual situation and determine the best road for your defense. Contact the criminal defense attorneys of Wolfe & Stec, Ltd., online, or call our office at 630-305-0222 for your free consultation.
Illinois 720 ILCS 5/12-21 (from Ch. 38, par. 12-21) deals with the “Criminal Abuse or Neglect of an Elderly Person or Person with a Disability.”
The law states that a caregiver commits the offense of criminal abuse or neglect of an elderly person or person with a disability when he or she knowingly:
(1) performs acts that cause the person’s life to be endangered, health to be injured, or pre-existing physical or mental condition to deteriorate; or
(2) fails to perform acts that are reasonably necessary to maintain or preserve the life or health of the person, causing life endangerment, health to be injured or pre-existing physical or mental condition to deteriorate; or
(3) abandons the person; or
(4) physically abuses, harasses, intimidates, or interferes with the personal liberty of the person or exposes the person to willful deprivation.
The term “caregiver” means a person other than a doctor who cares for the health and personal care of the senior at their place of residence. It can include a spouse or other family member or an employee.
Criminal abuse or neglect of the elderly person or person with a disability is a Class 3 felony, and punishment is imprisonment for a term of two to five years. Criminal neglect is a Class 2 felony if the criminal neglect results in the death of the person. Sentencing can be a term of 3 to 14 years, but life imprisonment is a possibility.
According to the law, claiming the accused reasonably believed that the victim was not an elderly person or person with a disability is not accepted as a defense to criminal abuse or neglect charges.
It is not uncommon to be falsely accused of elder abuse. Occasionally one family member will accuse another of stealing money from an elderly relative. Other times, a caregiver will be falsely accused of manipulating bank accounts of a senior citizen.
Perhaps you have been falsely accused of elder abuse, or the charges you are accused of do not really meet the criteria for elder abuse. As elder abuse defense lawyers, we closely examine evidence and aggressively defend clients who are victims of the false accusation of elder abuse. We will take the time to listen to and understand your story and will treat you with dignity and respect.
There are several elder abuse defenses available that a skilled criminal defense attorney can raise on your behalf that could result in a dismissal or reduction of your elder abuse charge. We provide quality criminal defense services to clients charged with criminal abuse of senior citizens or vulnerable adults throughout Illinois.
The criminal defense lawyers at Wolfe & Stec, Ltd. are skilled trial lawyers who believe each case is unique, with its own set of circumstances. We know the judges and the court system and will aggressively explore every avenue for your defense. We examine the facts, the individuals involved, and the evidence available, and can greatly increase your chances of getting your charges reduced or dismissed.
Don’t delay — Contact us for help today at 630-305-0222 if you have been accused of any elder abuse charges. Our Illinois criminal lawyers represent clients in DuPage County, Will County, Naperville, Aurora, Wheaton, Downers Grove, Bolingbrook, and the Greater Chicagoland area in Illinois. There is no charge for the initial consultation.
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