Taking care of people who cannot take care of themselves is a great responsibility. When someone is entrusted with caring for someone else, it is assumed that they will act responsibly. In instances where people take advantage of this power and abuse the people they are supposed to care for, the consequences can be quite dire.
Allegations of vulnerable adult abuse carry a lot of weight. A conviction is even worse because it ensures that the stigma of abusing a vulnerable adult will follow you. A Virginia vulnerable adults abuse lawyer can be indispensable if you are facing charges of elder abuse. A determined domestic violence attorney can work hard to defend you, and assure that your side of the story is told.
Vulnerable adult abuse typically refers to incidents of elder abuse. It is usually someone over the age of 60 or 70. They are vulnerable because of their age or because of a disability. What is most important is that they are in a condition where they have a decreased capacity to stand up for themselves and defend themselves, or otherwise merit some type of special treatment.
Often the term vulnerable is used but incapacitated is probably more accurate under Virginia Law. When a person is convicted of abuse or neglect, it is separated into two things. It is like they are taking advantage of someone who otherwise cannot take care of themselves.
Abusing or neglecting any adult that is incapacitated, when it does not have serious bodily injury or disease, then it is going to be a misdemeanor. It will be Class 1 so it will be the most serious type of misdemeanor unless it is more than the first offense. For the first offense, it will be Class 1 but more than first offense is going to be a felony. It will be a Class 6 felony. For a serious bodily injury or serious disease, that is going to be a much more serious felony even for a first-time offender. If there is death caused, that is obviously deemed a felony, too. Then, if there is death, it will be Class 3 felony. If it is just a serious bodily injury or serious disease, that will be a Class 4. A Virginia vulnerable adults abuse lawyer can be instrumental in helping an individual mitigate potential penalties.
The stigma attached to abusing vulnerable adults is high and, additionally, it causes a lot of employers to take pause. Even if it is a later job and they are not convicted of it, that is something that sticks with them and that if it is pending, their employer might not want to hold onto them to find out what happened.
In a more general sense, a lot of people who are accused of vulnerable adult abuse are actually caregivers by employment and are suspended from their job. An individual is not going to be able to be a caregiver. They will suspend them or fire them because of that charge. Any time an individual has a job with a position of trust, if they are a teacher, for example, that is not something that an individual can continue to do while the charge is pending or sometimes even after the person has been charged. It is something that is considered pretty gravely by most employers.
Anyone who is charged with abusing an adult should contact a Virginia vulnerable adults abuse lawyer as soon as possible because of the long-term implications of being convicted of vulnerable adult abuse. Not only does being charged with vulnerable adults abuse mar someone’s reputation, it also can hurt their ability to find and maintain employment. A skilled attorney will be able to use all available evidence to build you a solid case.