Jewelry, Cash, Checks, and Personal Information
Jewelry and Family Keepsakes
Preventing Caregiver Theft
We often write about caregivers taking cash, credits cards and checks from seniors and even getting their hands on seniors’ homes and financial accounts through fraud and undue influence. But jewelry and family keepsakes can disappear in an instant too, and those thefts mean financial loss and heartache too. The Marin County financial elder abuse attorneys at Evans Law Firm, Inc. represent seniors in Marin and throughout California victimized by any form of caregiver theft or financial elder abuse. If you or someone you know is a victim of financial elder abuse in Marin, San Francisco or elsewhere in California, call us today at 415-441-8669, and we can help.
Theft of Jewelry and Family Heirlooms
In one recently reported case,* detectives helped a family recover jewelry allegedly stolen by a caregiver and her boyfriend over a period of months. Family photographs helped detectives identify rings and precious stones that had missing from the elder’s home. According to the police, some of these items were later recovered at pawnshops with paperwork traced to defendants or in the defendant’s home pursuant to a search warrant. While the police were able to recover some of the property stolen, unfortunately much more was lost, with an estimated value of $80,000 according to the complaint.
There is no way to be entirely safe from caregiver theft or financial elder abuse but there are a few important steps you can take to protect your older loved ones:
• Always run a background check and contact references for any in-home caregiver before hiring them even if you are going through an agency.
• Never ever grant a Power of Attorney to a caregiver.
• Keep cash, checks, ATM cards, credit cards, and Social Security and bank account numbers out of reach.
• Check the insurance of the home health agency to be sure it is in line with State of California requirements, which include a $10,000 employee dishonesty bond and $1,000,000 coverage for professional liability. Cal. Health & Safety Code §§ 1796.10 et seq.
• Check that the senior’s personal homeowners insurance has a rider to cover jewelry, silver and other items.
• Drop in unannounced when the caregiver is working.
• Remove valuables from the home or place them in a home safe.
• Take pictures and locate receipts of valuables.
Report any suspicions to the police but also call elder abuse counsel to pursue all civil remedies available to senior victims under California elder abuse law. Our lawyers handle elder abuse cases of all varieties and know the remedies, extra damages, and awards of attorneys’ fees and costs to which you or your victimized loved one is entitled.
If you or a loved one been the victim of elder abuse in Marin County, San Francisco or elsewhere in California, contact Ingrid M. Evans and the other Evans Law Firm elder abuse attorneys at (415) 441-8669, or by email at <a href=”mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org”>email@example.com</a>. We can help guide your case through investigation, discovery, through a 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.
*Evans Law Firm, Inc. was not involved in the case in any way.