81-Year-Old Double Amputee Veteran Is Victim
Caregiver Entrusted With Paying Bills
Unlicensed Caregiver Allegedly Stole Thousands
The consequences of financial elder abuse on senior victims can be devastating and drive some victims to the brink of homelessness due to lack of funds to cover their housing costs. Or indeed a financial predator may try and take a senior’s home away from them even during their life or encumber it with debt the victim cannot repay. While most financial elder abuse starts out relatively small, the amounts stolen grow over time as the predator gets away with his or her theft. Left undetected, financial elder abuse can go on for years but for some victims the consequences are so severe and sudden that the theft is known right away. Whatever the timing or form of financial elder abuse and whatever the amounts, any taking of a senior’s property, or any assistance in that taking is a crime and grounds for civil liability of the person doing the taking and anyone assisting him or her. California Penal Code § 368 and Cal. Welf. & Inst. Code § 15610.30 (definition of financial elder abuse). California broadly defines what constitutes financial elder or dependent adult abuse:
(a) “Financial abuse” of an elder or dependent adult occurs when a person or entity does any of the following:
(1) Takes, secretes, appropriates, obtains, or retains real or personal property of an elder or dependent adult for a wrongful use or with intent to defraud, or both.
(2) Assists in taking, secreting, appropriating, obtaining, or retaining real or personal property of an elder or dependent adult for a wrongful use or with intent to defraud, or both.
(3) Takes, secretes, appropriates, obtains, or retains, or assists in taking, secreting, appropriating, obtaining, or retaining, real or personal property of an elder or dependent adult by undue influence, as defined in Section 15610.70.
If you or a loved one is a victim of elder or dependent adult abuse or neglect in Alameda County or elsewhere in California call us today at (415)441-8669. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267).
Caregiver Theft From 81-Year-Old Double Amputee
In a recently reported case of true suffering,  a double-amputee veteran, once on the brink of homelessness just two weeks ago after his caregiver allegedly stole thousands of dollars from him, has found new shelter for now. Back in November, the 81-year-old veteran was evicted from the apartment he’s lived in for 13 years. The reason: his previous caregiver, who was not licensed, allegedly stole around $5,000 from him making the victim unable to pay his rent. The victim says he gave the male caregiver access to his account to retrieve cash and money orders to pay bills. He’s limited to his wheelchair, with no convenient transportation to the bank or other businesses, and said that he trusted him. With no family to turn to, his close friend of two years, has worked to keep him off the street. He acknowledged that the victim does not have the physical capacity to take care of himself and has attempted to do so since the eviction. He was able to find the veteran temporary shelter by reaching out to the community.
Protecting Seniors From Financial Abuse
A caregiver should never have access to a senior’s cash, checks, PINs, ATM cards or credit cards. Ever. Even if you consider the caregiver to be trustworthy, just don’t do it. You’re only asking for trouble. A dishonest caregiver or other stranger in a senior’s home will grab whatever they can get. Keep cash, checks and cards out of their reach. But don’t stop there in protecting your older loved one as online or phone access to accounts can also be a method for getting money. Regularly monitor all of a senior’s accounts; view account activity online every day if you can. Start your due diligence sooner too. Always do a background check on anyone you hire as a caregiver; get references and call them. Never, ever give a caregiver a Power of Attorney, ATM card, credit card, or a blank check. Stay involved in any senior loved one’s life so a stranger does not have the opportunity for this kind of theft and exploitation.
If you sense any kind of abuse of an older loved one in Alameda County or anywhere else in the San Francisco Bay Area or throughout the State of California, call us right away. Ingrid M. Evans has years of experience in representing seniors and their families against abusers of any kind, including in-home caregivers. You can reach us at (415) 441-8669, or by email at email@example.com. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267).
 Evans Law Firm, Inc. was not involved in the case in any way.