Elder Abuse Statistics – 2023 Data

This post is a part of our guide series to support anyone who may have been a victim of Elder Abuse in the past or has questions around the topic:

What is Elder Abuse? Definitions & Meanings
Who Commits Elder Abuse & Why?
What are the Signs & Symptoms of Elder Abuse?
Handling & Dealing with Elder Abuse
How to Report Elder Abuse (and Who to Report it to)
How can Elder Abuse be Prevented?
Elder Abuse Data & Statistics
Elder Abuse Helplines, Support & Further Reading

Unfortunately elder abuse is a growing concern, thousands of elderly people are suffering from appalling treatment.

Data on the extent of elder abuse is limited and reported rates are likely to be an underestimation. In this guide we will look at some statistics and discuss how elder abuse in the UK is a major issue.

How many cases of Elder Abuse happen per year?

The Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) estimated that 210,000 adults aged 60-74 experienced domestic abuse in the year ending March 2018. In this survey the abuse included “partner or family non-physical abuse, threats, force, sexual assault or stalking”.

A report by Age UK in 2020 estimated around 180,000 women and 98,000 men aged 60 to 74 were victim survivors of domestic abuse in England and Wales in 2018/19.

A survey commissioned by the charity Hourglass in 2020 revealed 1 in 5 UK residents have personal experience of abuse as an older person or know someone who has been abused.

Hourglass suggested this indicated almost 2.7 million older people may have been affected by domestic abuse across the country in 2020.

How widespread is Elder Abuse in the carer industry?

A survey carried out in 2018 revealed very high rates of abuse in care homes.

Abuse was identified in 91 out of 92 care homes, most commonly relating to forms of neglect.

The abuse in the carer industry is likely to be higher because of the simple fact of opportunity. Care workers are normally helping elderly people for substantial periods and are not always observed.

Many elderly people are in some ways disabled, many lack mobility, some elderly have sensory impairments, and a large number are forgetful and have dementia. Sadly, when people are involved in the care of these elderly people, and their role implicitly involves a substantial imbalance of power, there will be people who abuse this.

How many Elder Abuse cases involve financial abuse?

The Crime Survey for England and Wales in 2018 showed that an older person becomes a victim of fraud every 40 seconds, according to an analysis by Age UK.

Some researchers have claimed that between 1 and 2 percent of people aged 65 or over in the UK have suffered or currently suffering financial abuse since turning 65. This would mean approximately 130,000 elderly people have suffered from this abuse.

How many cases of Elder Abuse go unreported?

Research and experts suggest that the vast majority of elder abuse goes unreported for various reasons, this may be because the victim doesn’t even realise what is going on; they may be too scared to report the abuser, or the abuser is a family member and they are trying to protect them.

How many reported cases of Elder Abuse result in a conviction and/or victim compensation?

Sadly most elder abuse cases are not prosecuted, it is either not considered an option or it is addressed through a police caution. Even if an elder abuse case got to court, it is more likely to result in a suspended sentence or community service.

According to research carried out by hourglass, only 0.7 percent of crimes against the elderly result in prosecution. This would mean that over one million elderly people across the UK are in need of support.

We understand how difficult it is to see someone you know or love experiencing abuse, sometimes trying to help a victim is not easy. It’s important to remember that you are not alone and the first step that you should take is to talk to someone. No one should have to deal with abuse alone.

Here at the Criminal Injuries Helpline, we help victims of violent crime and abuse recover compensation. You may want to help the victim gain some justice, get in touch with us today to see if the victim would qualify.

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