Alleged Caregiver Theft Of Jewelry, Gold And Valuables
Multiple Victims According To Police
Theft Risk From In-Home And Facility Caregivers
Many older people maintain their independence right up until the end of life. But that is not the case for most – most seniors will require some kind of assistance at some point from occasional housekeeping care or full-time care in a skilled nursing facility. Regardless of the level of care needed, each of the varied levels of care mean bringing strangers into a senior’s life or housing them in a facility. Whenever a senior is under any type of care, there is an opportunity for theft and financial abuse. As we age, the risk of abuse increases; it is particularly high for those seniors suffering from Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia who may not be aware of what is happening in their life or what money or property they are missing. Typically, caregiver theft starts out rather minor (small amounts of cash or isolated charges on a credit card. But if an unscrupulous caregiver sees they are getting away with it, the amounts and schemes invariably grow. Evans Law Firm, Inc. represents injured seniors and their families here in San Francisco, throughout the Bay Area or anywhere else in California. We pursue all available remedies for the elderly victim against those persons or businesses responsible for their abuse, including getting their money back, undoing illegal contracts and getting awards of attorneys’ fees and expenses for the costs of bringing suit. We can be reach at (415)441-8669.
Often, a caregiver who steals from one senior victim has stolen from others. That’s one reason why it is always a good idea to do a background check on any individual or agency you engage to care for a senior loved one. Agencies themselves are not always thorough in their background checks of employed aides, so it’s best to conduct your own. In one recently reported case, a caregiver was arrested on suspicion of property and identity theft from at least eight seniors, using their bank accounts to make purchases and stealing jewelry, credit cards, and other property. Among victims include a former professional baseball player whose 1958 National League championship ring was stolen. The man’s ring, along with his wife’s matching gold brooch, recently went missing from the assisted care facility in which they reside. The suspect was employed both as an in-home caregiver and as an aid at the facility. According to police, he stole from patients at home and those he worked for in the facility.
How To Spot Financial Elder Abuse
A family may be able to catch financial elder abuse through keeping valuables and credit cards secure and carefully reviewing a senior’s bank records routinely. This includes all records for all accounts including for savings and checking accounts, credit cards, investments accounts, loans and the like. We have seen cases where a caregiver arranges for a reverse mortgage on a senior’s home in order to take more funds available to them after having depleted all the senior’s available funds. If your older loved one has in-home assistance, always vet the individual (and their agency) before they ever come inside. If the caregiver is coming to you through an agency, check out the agency’s track record too. Once a caregiver is in the home, keep valuables locked up and do not have cash, credit cards or confidential information near at hand. Do not let the caregiver see any Social Security numbers; we have also seen cases where a senior’s benefits are diverted to another account. Call your loved on frequently and speak to them alone; tell them to take your call privately and out of earshot of the caregiver. The senior may be intimidated to speak candidly in front of someone they fear. Never ever let a senior give a caregiver a Power of Attorney.
Ingrid M. Evans represents seniors in San Francisco and throughout California who are victims of financial elder abuse or fraud. Ingrid and our other elder abuse attorneys can be reached at (415) 441-8669, or by email at email@example.com. Ingrid and her team of financial elder abuse attorneys will pursue all remedies available to you or your injured senior loved one including getting stolen money back (restitution), undoing any trusts or contracts the abuser may have fraudulently created (rescissions), damages for pain and suffering, and an award of the attorneys’ fees and expenses you’ve incurred in bringing your case.
 Evans Law Firm, Inc. was not involved in the case in any way.