Caregiver Befriended Elderly Couple
Relative Contacts Police About Suspicious Activity
Fraudulent Loan And Unauthorized Purchases Alleged
The elderly are potential victims of financial elder abuse in their own homes by dishonest, greedy caregivers or other strangers working for them. Sometimes the theft is as straightforward as taking cash or stealing a credit card and making unauthorized purchases. But abusive schemes can grow more complex and include obtaining loans, using powers of attorney to sell assets or create new bank accounts or redo estate plans in the caregiver’s favor. Small or large, all such actions are crimes and acts of financial elder abuse. In fact, 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 financial elder abuse in Marin or elsewhere in the San Francisco Bay Area or throughout California call us today at (415)441-8669. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267).
Caregiver Charged With Theft From Elderly Couple
In a recently reported case,  an in-home caregiver has been arrested and accused of taking more than $100,000 from an elderly couple, leasing a car and accessing the bank account in their names, according to authorities. The Sheriff’s Office said the suspect, who knew the couple for a couple of years, took the money this year. The suspect was caring for a 68-year-old woman with health issues, befriending her and her husband, according to the Sheriff’s Office. The Sheriff’s Office said the caregiver eventually became the woman’s power of attorney and convinced the couple to move into a rented home under the guise that it was a lease-to-own property. Investigators also said the caregiver obtained access to the couple’s bank account and made personal purchases with their money, though they did not offer specifics. She also allegedly obtained a loan in the wife’s name and leased a car in the husband’s name, according to the Sheriff’s Office. A relative of the husband contacted law enforcement after he became aware of suspicious activity with respect to the couple’s finances.
Daily monitoring of all a senior’s accounts is the best way to protect an older loved one from this kind of fraudulent activity. If your loved one resides in a facility, keep cash, checks and credit and debit cards in a safe place and not in their facility room. 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. If you sense any kind of abuse of an older loved one, 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 email@example.com. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267).
 Evans Law Firm, Inc. was not involved in the case in any way.