Criminal and Civil Laws Against Financial Elder Abuse
Criminal Prosecutions and Civil Recovery
Financial elder abuse is a growing problem in Alameda County, throughout California, and across the country. The numbers are shocking and the toll on seniors and their families devastating. While likely underreported, financial elder abuse costs older Americans $36.5 billion annually with over 5 million senior victims every year. Elders who have been abused have a much higher risk of death when compared to those who have not been mistreated. Most financial elder abuse cases involve a family member or close friend stealing from the senior and much of financial elder abuse is criminal – plain old outright theft. But behaviors short of criminal such as financial exploitation or manipulation may violate civil protections against financial elder abuse, especially in California where protection for seniors is broad. Whether the abuse is criminal or civil, financial recovery may be possible. If you or someone you know is the victim of financial elder abuse, call the Alameda County and California elder abuse attorneys at Evans Law Firm today at 415-441-8669.
Local police departments, Adult Protective Services, and county prosecutors all take financial elder abuse seriously. Prosecutions for criminal financial elder abuse occur every day in our state under California Penal Code §§ 368 et seq. But criminal prosecutions are lengthy processes and local law enforcement agencies are often over-worked and understaffed to handle all the cases they see. And even if criminal prosecution succeeds in apprehension and punishment of a criminal, financial recovery if any may be limited to restitution of lost funds. We at Evans Law Firm represent victims of financial elder abuse cases every day and while we encourage victims and their families to pursue criminal prosecutions where justified we also strongly recommend pursuing all available civil remedies.
Civil Protections and Remedies
California is a leader in protections for senior citizens against financial elder abuse from every corner – caregivers, family members, con artists, insurance agents, annuity salesmen, financial advisors, reverse mortgage lenders, banks, stock brokerages and retirement planners. In fact, the Welfare and Institutions Code of California §§ 15610.30 et seq. any “taking” of a senior’s property for a “wrongful purpose” constitutes financial elder abuse. The law provides for extra damages and mandatory attorneys’ fees in elder abuse cases. The California Insurance Code, §§ 10127 et seq, imposes a heightened standard of disclosure on financial advisors when advising seniors on life insurance and annuities. There are strict written disclosure requirements and free look periods for life insurance and annuity policies. For reverse mortgages in California, there are also strict disclosure requirements and a mandatory counseling and free look requirement. California Civil Code § 1923 (reverse mortgages statute). All of these contracts are especially dangerous for seniors and the chances for exploitation, manipulation, and other abusive practices are high. Call Evans Law Firm at 415-441-8669 if you live in Alameda County or elsewhere in California and are being financially exploited in any way.
If you or a loved one been the victim of financial elder abuse in Alameda County, or in any California county, contact financial elder abuse attorney Ingrid Evans and the other Evans Law Firm financial elder abuse attorneys today at (415) 441-8669, or by email at <a href=”mailto:email@example.com”>firstname.lastname@example.org</a>. Our attorneys have experience with complex financial contracts and large insurance companies. We can help guide your case through a FINRA arbitration, jury trial, or toward an equitable settlement. We handle cases involving physical and financial elder abuse, qui tam and whistleblower law, nursing home abuse, whole life insurance and universal life insurance, and indexed, variable, and fixed annuities.