Bookkeeper Accused Of Stealing Over $210,000
Charged With Elder Abuse, Wire Fraud And Money Laundering
Police Allege Five Years Of Theft
Seniors are vulnerable to financial abuse from any quarter including from the very persons they hire to take care of their financial affairs. Whenever, an unscrupulous person has access to a senior’s finances the danger of exploitation and theft exists. When the third-party is hired to take care of a senior’s finances, the access is constant and the risks of money disappearing especially real. Evans Law Firm, Inc. represents victims of financial elder abuse from any source, be it caregivers, trustees, bookkeepers, persons with Powers of Attorney and others. Call us today at (415)441-8669 or TOLL FREE 1-888-80EVANS (888-503-8267) if any senior loved one has suffered any kind of financial elder or dependent adult abuse in Marin County or elsewhere in California.
Bookkeeper Arrested for Financial Elder Abuse
In one recently reported case, a bookkeeper was hired to monitor an elderly lady’s bank account and pay her monthly bills. In her second year of employment, police allege that the bookkeeper opened a joint bank account in her name and the elderly victim’s name — unbeknownst to the senior, investigators said. Police allege that the bookkeeper diverted the senior’s funds in this joint account for a period of four years. The investigation into the senior’s finances was launched after her family felt things were amiss and called police. Authorities said there was a paper trail of nearly 80 electronic transfers and checks totaling more than $212,000 that showed funds going from the victim’s bank account into the joint account. The bookkeeper then allegedly withdrew the cash for personal use and to pay her credit card bills, according to police. The charges are only allegations at this time. Following her arrest, the bookkeeper plead not guilty to the charges and is awaiting trial.
Preventing Elder Financial Abuse And Theft
Fortunately, the victim’s family alerted the police in the reported case when they noticed money and other property were missing from their older family member’s accounts. The case reveals the important role family plays in helping to detect financial exploitation of older people. If you have an older loved one, make use to stay involved in their life and protect them from this kind of abuse. Monitor all their bank accounts, investment accounts, and credit card accounts online. Audit the work done by any bookkeeper or trustee for the senior. Trace any senior’s income and expenses through all accounts and pay special attention to transfer out of their account to any other account. We have seen many instances where a caregiver or other persons sets up a joint or separate account and siphons a senior’s money into that account for their own use.
With the senior’s permission redirect mail to your own address so any caregivers or other strangers in a senior’s home do not have access to mail. Keep all financial information like account numbers and Social Security numbers away from a caregiver’s glance. Remember that a senior’s finances are none of a caregiver’s business; they are there just to take care of a senior, not to pry into personal, financial, or family affairs. Never, ever grant a power of attorney to a caregiver or a bookeeper. Accompany older loved ones whenever they go shopping or go to the bank or have any sort of meeting about financial matters. You can be there to protect them from outright theft and the problems they may get into if they are sold an unsuitable investment or insurance product like an annuity. Perhaps most important of all, if you suspect anything wrong, do something about it right away.
Ingrid M. Evans represents elder and dependent adults in Marin County and throughout California who are victims of any kind of financial exploitation or other abuse. Ingrid can be reached at (415) 441-8669 or TOLL FREE 1-888-80EVANS (888-503-8267), or email us at <a href=”mailto:email@example.com”>firstname.lastname@example.org</a>.
 Evans Law Firm, Inc. was not involved in the reported case in any way.