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Aug 16, 2022 by |

Los Angeles Financial Elder Abuse Attorney: Red Flags Of Caregiver Fraud


Fraud Risk When Strangers In Senior’s Home

Red Flags Of Financial Abuse

Remedies Against Dishonest Caregivers

We present some red flags of financial elder abuse by dishonest caregivers below because experience has taught us that whenever a dishonest stranger or caregiver enters an elderly person’s home there is a risk of theft.  Cash, checks and credit cards can disappear quickly.  It may be a one-time theft or a more sustained theft through writing checks or using credit cards repeatedly.  Whatever the “form” or frequency or size of financial elder abuse, 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 Los Angeles or elsewhere in California call us today at (415)441-8669. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267).

Red Flags Of Caregiver Fraud And Theft

Stay involved in the lives of any senior loved one under the care of an in-home caregiver.  You know your loved one best and may suspect something is wrong based on your own knowledge.  But here is a list of some red flags to keep an eye out for:

  1. Any attempt to isolate or prevent the patient from speaking to family or third parties;
  2. Becoming too friendly and/or romantically involved with the elderly patient;
  3. Asking for legal authority such as banking privileges or a power of attorney;
  4. Accessing personal documents such as a will, financial accounts, investment accounts and the like;
  5. Withholding medical information from the family;
  6. Withholding financial information from the family;
  7. Overstepping normal expected boundaries of a caregiver;
  8. Suggesting opening new financial accounts or the transfer of existing ones
  9. Receiving “gifts” more than token value;
  10. Asking for donations to their favorite charity
  11. Participating in identity theft, such as obtaining social insurance numbers or credit card pin numbers;
  12. Asking to be joint holder on a bank account;
  13. Words or actions to the effect that the caregiver makes the older adult believe that he or she is special or lucky to be chosen by the caregiver to receive their care

Protecting Seniors From Financial Abuse

Always do a background check on any caregiver before he or she is hired.  Ask for references and check them.  Once the caregiver is on the job have the time cards sent to you so you can verify their accuracy. There are other important steps to follow as well to prevent more elaborate schemes of financial abuse. Careful monitoring of a senior’s checking account – and close review of cancelled checks – may have caught the reported fraud in this case sooner than eight or nine months.  Always monitor a senior loved one’s checking account; take a look at it online every day if you can.  But 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, 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. 

Contact Us

If you sense any kind of abuse of an older loved one in San Francisco or anywhere else in Los Angeles 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 Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267).

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