Elder abuse, neglect, and exploitation have received significant attention in recent years, highlighting the need for protection and justice for vulnerable senior citizens in Florida. Examples of abuse are domestic violence, emotional or verbal abuse, sexual assault, battery, negligence, theft and fraud. Occurrences of exploitation may be breaches of fiduciary duties, unauthorized use and misappropriation of funds, and failure to use financial assets for the necessities of a senior or disabled person .While preventing crimes against the elderly is crucial, it is equally important to recognize that not all allegations are founded in truth.
New Legislation in Place
Florida legislators recognize the severity of crimes against seniors. They have taken proactive measures to protect this vulnerable population. Governor Ron DeSantis signed Florida Statutes 825.103, Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation of Elderly Persons and Disabled Adults, into law on May 25, 2023. In this statute, lawmakers expanded and strengthened state law to punish perpetrators for crimes against these vulnerable populations.
This law aims to hold perpetrators accountable by imposing increased criminal penalties, fines, probation, and imprisonment. By strengthening this law, Florida legislators are sending a clear message that the state will not tolerate elder abuse, neglect, and exploitation. But, what if the allegations are unfounded?
The Burden of Proof: Challenging Allegations
In any criminal case, the burden of proof lies with the prosecution. The accused is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. The defense lawyer’s role is to rigorously challenge the allegations and ensure a fair trial.
Balancing Compassion and a Vigorous Defense
At The AP Law Group, we understand the importance of protecting vulnerable citizens from abuse, neglect, and exploitation. However, we also believe in upholding the principles of justice and ensuring that the accused receives a fair trial. By diligently examining the evidence, challenging the prosecution’s case, and presenting a strong defense, we aim to achieve justice for all parties involved.
Allegations may Lack Validity due to the following:
- Misunderstanding or misinterpretation
- Personal conflicts or disputes
- Cognitive Impairment or mental health issues
- Financial motives of the accuser
- Attention-seeking behavior or manipulation
- Mistaken identity
- Accidental injuries
Legal Protections for the Accused: Due Process Matters
The legal system provides specific protections for those accused of crimes in Florida. These protections include the right to legal representation, the right to confront and cross-examine witnesses, and the right to present a defense. At The AP Law Firm, we provide valuable support to our clients, offering sound legal advice and explaining legal proceedings. With extensive knowledge and experience, our legal team works diligently to achieve the best possible outcome for individuals facing criminal allegations. Our goal is to protect the reputation and future of our clients.
Questioning the Credibility of Evidence
In elder abuse cases, evidence plays a pivotal role. At The AP Law Group, we scrutinize the evidence presented by the prosecution, such as medical records, witness testimonies, and forensic evidence. For allegations of exploitation, we employ various investigative techniques, such as reviewing financial records, interviewing witnesses, gathering expert opinions to assess financial transactions, and evaluating the elder’s mental capacity. Our legal team investigates the background and credibility of the individual making the accusations. We strive to find evidence that supports our client’s innocence and discredits the criminal case.
The AP Law Group Delivers Results
Elder abuse, neglect, and exploitation cases are complex and emotionally charged. It is imperative to remember that everyone accused of a crime deserves a robust defense. At The AP Law Group, we work towards upholding justice and ensuring fair outcomes in elder law cases in Florida.
Contact Attorney Tania Alavi or Attorney Andrew Pozzuto at The AP Law Group today if you are accused of an elder law crime. We know that one arrest or conviction can affect your life for years, if not forever. As trial lawyers with more than fifty years of combined experience, we have extensive experience in a range of Florida and Federal criminal law cases.
The AP Law Group has offices in Gainesville and Ocala, Florida, and we represent clients in these and the surrounding communities. Call us at (352) 732-9191 to schedule a confidential appointment to discuss your options for a brighter future.