Physical Abuse Law and Legal Definition

Under the West Virginia Code of State Rules, “physical abuse is the use of physical force, body posture or gesture or body movement that inflicts or threatens to inflict pain on a client. Physical abuse includes, but is not limited to: unnecessary use of physical restraint; use of unnecessary force in holding or restraining a client; improper use of physical or mechanical restraints; use of seclusion without proper orders or cause; slapping, kicking, hitting, pushing, shoving, choking, hair pulling, biting, etc.; inappropriate horseplay; raising a hand or shaking a fist at a client, crowding or moving into a client's personal space; intentional inflicting of pain; punitive measures of any kind, including the use of corporal punishment, withholding meals for punitive reasons, inappropriate removal from treatment programs, restricting communication, or withdrawal of rights or privileges; or physical sexual abuse, i.e., any physical or provocative advance such as caressing or fondling, sexual intercourse, etc.” W. Va. CSR § 64-59-3