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Nov 9, 2022 by |

Contra Costa County Financial Elder Abuse Attorney: Theft Of Bank And Credit Cards From Dependent Adult

ATTORNEY NEWSLETTER

Former Caregiver Allegedly Stole Bank Cards And Credit Cards

71-Year-Old Victim Suffered From Cerebral Palsy

Thousands In Unauthorized Purchases At Multiple Stores

Cash, checks, credit cards, ATM cards, jewelry and other valuables within reach of a dishonest stranger or caregiver in a senior’s home can disappear quickly.  In fact, every time a stranger or caregiver enters an elder or dependent adult’s home, there is a risk of theft.  Every time.  That is why it is so important to screen whoever you hire for in-home services and remove all cash, checks and credits and financial information from reach even when you have fully vetted the person.  A caregiver is in the home to provide care and the financial affairs of the older patient should be completely off limits.  Older persons or dependent adults are not in a position to protect themselves against financial abuse.  Below we share some tips on how to prevent financial elder and dependent adult abuse, but if it happens, Evans Law Firm. Inc. can represent victims and their families against all wrongdoers including persons who may be responsible for hiring and supervising the dishonest employee in the first place, or anyone who assists the abuser in their financial abuse. We pursue all remedies available to the injured elder or dependent adult, which include awards of attorneys’ fees and expenses for bringing your case.  Cal. Welf. & Inst. Code § 15657.5. If you or a loved one has been the victim of financial elder abuse in Contra Costa County or elsewhere in California, call us today at (415)441-8669. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267).

Ex-Caregiver Pleads Guilty To Credit Card Theft

In one recently reported case,[1] a former home health care provider pleaded guilty to using bank and credit cards belonging to a dependent man and making unauthorized personal purchases with them.  The former caregiver and her husband were arrested on charges that they used bank and credit cards for a 71-year-old man at various stores racking up more than $8,200 in purchases, according to court records.  Anyone assisting in the financial elder abuse of a senior, like the caregiver’s husband, is also guilty of financial elder abuse under the law.  See Cal. Welf. & Inst. Code § 15610.30 (definition of financial elder abuse). The 71-year-old man suffered from cerebral palsy, court records say. Police were notified of the alleged thefts when the caregiver failed to show for her shift at the man’s residence and the man and a replacement caregiver noticed suspicious charges on the man’s debit and credit cards.  When the victim initially confronted the caregiver, she pledged but failed to repay the man, court records say.  The victim then went to the police.  After an investigation, police say the caregiver and her husband used the man’s bank and credit cards at fast food restaurants, pet stores, department stores, gasoline service stations and auto repair stores.  The caregiver herself plead guilty and is awaiting sentencing; the husband is awaiting trial.

Keeping Loved Ones Safe

If you have an older loved one under the care of an in-home caregiver, make sure they don’t have any accessible cash, checks or credit cards in the home.  Keep their jewelry and valuable personal possessions in a safe place too.  Even if you think you have all their bank and credit card information secure, continue to monitor credit cards and bank accounts online.  Make sure financial statements are mailed to your own address so others do not have access to you loved one’s business mail.  Track where your loved one’s Social Security and pension money is deposited as caregivers or others may divert those deposits if they can access the benefit accounts.  Make sure financial information like account numbers and Social Security numbers are kept away from a caregiver’s glance.  Never, ever grant a power of attorney to a caregiver or nursing home staff member.   Perhaps most important of all, if you suspect anything wrong, do something about it right away.  

Contact Us

If you suspect financial elder abuse of a loved one, friend or neighbor in Contra Costa County, or elsewhere in California, call Ingrid M. Evans at Evans Law Firm, Inc. at (415) 441-8669, or by email at info@evanslaw.com. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267).  Ingrid pursues all available remedies for families and injured seniors against those responsible.

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

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