One Year In Prison And $661,549 In Restitution
Elderly, Blind Victim Now Deceased
Caregiver Acted As Conservator Of Victim
Betrayal of an elder’s trust by a dishonest caregiver is one of the most recurring forms of financial abuse of the elderly. The abuse may occur almost immediately when the dishonest caregiver enters the senior’s home or it may be a more sustained scheme of abuse and theft that grows over time. In a recent a recent criminal sentencing discussed below the dishonest caregiver got herself appointed as her victim’s conservator in order to gain control over all her victim’s money. We have seem the same kind of facts in other cases. Financial elder abuse is a crime and grounds for civil liability for the person taking the money and anyone assisting them. Penal Code § 368 and Cal. Welf. & Inst. Code § 15610.30 (definition of financial abuse). If a senior or dependent person is a victim of financial elder abuse, Evans Law Firm. Inc. can represent the victim and his or her family, and pursue all persons responsible, including anyone assisting in the abuse. We will pursue all available remedies including an award of attorneys’ fees and expenses for bringing suit. Cal. Welf. & Inst. Code § 15657.5. If you or a loved one has been the victim of financial elder abuse in Orange County or elsewhere in California, call us today at (415)441-8669. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267).
Caregiver Sentenced For Theft
In a recently reported sentencing, a caregiver who also acted as court-appointed conservator for an elderly, blind victim has been sentenced for stealing over $600,000 from her victim. The victim died after authorities began their investigation but the State continued its prosecution. Following her arrest, the caregiver plead guilty to two charges and has now been sentenced to one year in prison and restitution in the amount if $661,549. The State alleged that over a three-year period the caregiver stole $661,549 from the victim and used the money for, among other things, construction projects on an extensive lake property, vehicles, furniture, a pontoon boat and cash. None of the expenditures was authorized. According to Court documents, the caregiver admitted she took advantage of the victim “a lot,” including lying to the victim about her finances. According to prosecutors, the victim lived her final days believing this fraud left her destitute and unable to care for her simple needs. The State Attorney General’s Office was assisted by FBI and IRS Criminal Investigation Units in prosecution of the case.
Keeping Older Loved Ones Safe
This tragic case illustrates one piece of advice we constantly offer – never, ever let a caregiver get involved in an older person’s financial affairs. Ever. Under no circumstances. A caregiver is there to provide health care and assistance with daily living activities, NOT finances. Never allow access to financial or personal information like Social Security Numbers, PINs, or bank account information. Never give a caregiver (or anyone else for that matter) a blank check for anything. Monitor all of a senior’s credit cards and bank accounts online. Every day. Track where your loved one’s Social Security and pension benefits are being deposited. Every month. Have financial statements mailed to your address so others do not have access to you loved one’s business mail. Never, ever grant a power of attorney or a blank check or a credit or debit card to a caregiver or nursing home staff member. Perhaps most important of all, if you suspect anything wrong, do something about it right away.
If you suspect financial elder abuse of a loved one, friend or neighbor in Orange County, or elsewhere in California, call Ingrid M. Evans at Evans Law Firm, Inc. at (415) 441-8669, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267). Ingrid pursues all available remedies for families and injured seniors against those responsible.
 Evans Law Firm, Inc. was not involved in the case in any way.