Multiple Unauthorized Credit Card Charges Alleged
71-Year-Old Bedridden Victim
Caregiver And Husband Accused Of Spending Spree With Victim’s Cards
Unscrupulous caregivers strike quickly if they can access cash, checks, ATM cards, credit cards, and jewelry. Whether caregiver theft or fraud is a one-time act or a sequence of coordinated acts, we have seen cases where the caregiver drains all of a senior’s bank accounts, accesses retirement benefits and life insurance, causes estate planning documents to be changed in their favor, and has a senior’s house deeded to them or encumbered with a loan or reverse mortgage so the caregiver can take the proceeds. The best way to prevent this kind of economic devastation is to vet anyone who enters the senior’s home thoroughly, stay involved in a senior’s life, look for signs of abuse and get help at the very first instance you suspect something is wrong. If you discover any caregiver theft or fraud being perpetrated against an older loved one of yours here in Marin or elsewhere in California, Evans Law Firm, Inc. will pursue the abusive caregiver, and the agency he or she works for, if your loved one has been the victim of financial abuse. If you or a loved one has been the victim of financial elder abuse in Marin, San Francisco or anywhere in the Bay Area or throughout California, call us today at (415)441-8669. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267).
Caregiver Credit Card Theft
In one reported caregiver theft case, authorities accuse a senior’s caregiver and her husband with racking up thousands of dollars of expenses using the financial cards of the bed-ridden elderly man. Specifically, the caregiver and her husband are accused of going on an $8,280 spending spree, buying cameras, cellphones and food as well as spending more than $500 at a teddy bear shop. According to the complaint, defendant was a caretaker for an in-home caregiver agency and was responsible for caring for a 71-year-old cerebral palsy patient, confined to his bed. Police were dispatched to the victim’s home when another caregiver reported that the suspect had been using the victim’s debit and credit cards for months without permission. A review of bank records by police showed the cards had been used to make dozens of purchases, including thousands of dollars at area Walmart stores, $531 at Build-A-Bear Workshop, and numerous fast-food purchases.
Protecting Seniors From Caregiver Theft And Financial Abuse
The best way to prevent this kind of sudden theft is to keep credit cards, cash, and ATM cards away from a caregiver’s reach. Seniors should not give their credit card to a caregiver to go shopping for them; if they need help like that encourage them to ask family or a trusted friend to do the shopping. If you’re a family member of an older person check in on them frequently in person. If you can’t do that, call and make sure you speak directly with the older person and find out what is going on in his or her life. Don’t let a caregiver tell you your loved one or neighbor can’t come to the phone or believe them if they say the person is doing fine. Be especially vigilant about watching financial matters for the senior. Monitor the senior’s credit cards online or close the cards altogether if they are not necessary; unauthorized use of credit cards is a very common form of financial elder abuse. Monitor all of a senior’s retirement, investment and bank accounts online. Redirect the senior’s business or financial mail to your own address. Never, ever grant a power of attorney to a caregiver. If you suspect anything wrong, do something about it right away.
If you suspect financial elder abuse of a loved one, friend or neighbor by a new “friend” of the senior, a second spouse, caregiver, or other person in Marin, San Francisco, or elsewhere in California, call Ingrid M. Evans at Evans Law Firm, Inc. at (415) 441-8669, or by email at email@example.com. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267). I
 Evans Law Firm, Inc. was not involved in the case in any way.