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Dec 8, 2021 by |

Alameda County Financial Elder Abuse Attorneys: CPA Accused Of Stealing $1.5 Million From Two Elderly Siblings Who Were Clients

ATTORNEY NEWSLETTER

CPA Allegedly Caught When Trying Transfer $500,000 To Himself 

More Than $1.5 Million Allegedly Taken By Checks And Wires 

CPA Allegedly Hired Unqualified Caregivers For Clients

Powers of Attorney (POAs) are incredibly and powerful legal instruments that grant broad powers over virtually all of a principal’s affairs.  When coupled with health care powers, the agent may in essence have control over every aspect of the principal’s life. The potential for misuse of such extensive power is always present, even when it is a professional who holds the power. Whenever you grant an individual a POA make sure it is a person you trust. Ms. Evans recommends to never have a caregiver as power of attorney.  Instead, have a family member you trust and preferably joint powers of attorney that have to act together if there is concern with anyone.   If you are concerned about family or don’t have family to be your power of attorney you can hire a licensed, bonded and insured fiduciary – look at PFAC.org or the PFAC (Professional Fiduciary Association of California) in your County for recommendations.  If an agent has misused a POA to your or an older loved one’s detriment or committed other acts of financial elder abuse 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).

Recent CPA Arrest [1] 

Recently, a local prosecutor’s office arrested an accountant for two elderly siblings for misappropriation of funds.  The accountant allegedly held powers of attorney for both of the elderly individuals and used the powers, according to authorities, to benefit herself.   According to the complaint, the CPA attempted to transfer $500,000 from an investment account of one of the siblings at the victim’s bank.  The transaction was flagged by the bank once the CPA initiated the transfer and was immediately reported to law enforcement.  That report triggered an investigation which uncovered a string of abusive transactions according to the District Attorney’s office.  Following the investigation, the accountant was also accused of hiring two individuals connected with him as home healthcare aides for his clients, despite the fact they are not licensed as home healthcare aides.  According to police, he used his own people as caregivers to help cover up his fraudulent scheme.  In total, investigators estimate that more than $1.5 million was allegedly taken from the elderly siblings by check and electronic transfer and made to appear as though they were legitimate reimbursements for care of the clients.  Also, prosecutors allege that large payments to the CPA and the caregivers were made to look as though they had been authorized by the siblings.  The suspect is awaiting trial on the charges, and has pleaded not guilty.

What To Do If A POA Is Misused

Evans Law Firm, Inc. can help injured seniors whenever a POA has been misused. We are familiar with California law protecting principals from abuse by their appointed agents.  For example, California law prohibits an agent from designating beneficiaries or creating future (or survivorship) interests in the principal’s property unless specifically authorized to do so in a POA.  Cal. Prob. Code § 4264.  The agent is also strictly prohibited from making or revoking the principal’s Will. Cal. Prob. Code § 4265.   We have experience with many cases involving the misuse of POAs and know how to investigate and prosecute civil cases against all persons responsible for the theft or financial abuse.  Misuse of a POA to commit any such wrongful or unauthorized acts renders the transactions void and also makes the offending agent liable for attorneys’ fees when the principal sues for the abuse.  Cal. Prob. Code § 4231.5(c).

Contact Us

Ingrid M. Evans can represent you if an agent has misused a Power of Attorney granted by you or an older loved one.  If you need help, call us today at 415-441-8669 or or by email at <a href=”mailto:info@evanslaw.com”>info@evanslaw.com</a>. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267).  Ingrid will pursue all remedies available against the agent, including attorneys’ fees and expenses for the older person required to bring an action based on the agent’s wrongful conduct.

[1] Evans Law Firm, Inc. was not involved in the case in any way.

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