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Mar 3, 2022 by |

San Francisco Financial Elder Abuse Attorney: Caregiver Allegedly Neglected And Stole From 77-Year-Old Disabled Patient

ATTORNEY NEWSLETTER

Caregiver Took Money And Neglected Disabled Elder

Authorities Find Patient Living In Squalor

Authorities Allege Altered Checks And Unauthorized Credit Card Charges

For seniors and dependent adults under the care of in-home caregivers, neglect and financial abuse often converge.   When an unscrupulous caregiver’s primary interest is taking money from a senior or dependent adult, actually caring for that person means little to the caregiver.  In fact, the neglect may be intentional if the caregiver has been able to arrange for changes in a patient’s estate plans and hopes to hasten the patient’s death in order to get obtain estate.   But whether the financial abuse is on that scale or not, any form of financial elder abuse and certain forms of neglect are crimes and grounds for civil liability of the abuser. California Penal Code § 368 and Cal. Welf. & Inst. Code § 15610.30 (definition of financial elder abuse); Cal. Welf. & Inst. Code § 15610.57 (definition of neglect).  In a recently reported caregiver arrest, discussed below, the a caregiver has been arrested on charges of neglect and financial elder abuse of a 77-year-old 100% disabled veteran.  If you or a loved one is a victim of financial elder or dependent adult abuse or neglect here in San Francisco or elsewhere in California call us today at (415)441-8669. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267).

Caregiver Arrested For Neglect And Financial Elder Abuse

In a recently reported case,[1] the primary caregiver of a disabled veteran was arrested and booked with felony charges including elderly neglect and exploitation.  According to authorities, the caregiver was paid at least $16,853 by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to provide care for a “100-percent disabled” 77-year-old veteran who was found living in squalor during multiple check-ups, according to an affidavit.  Due to how the veteran’s dependence on oxygen prevented him from leaving his apartment, deputies said the veteran allowed his caregiver to make purchases with his credit card and write checks for rent on his behalf. Upon subpoenaing the veteran’s bank, authorities determined that the caregiver wrote out thousands of dollars in checks made out to himself.   In a review of the veteran’s credit card transactions, between 75-120 charges were made each month that would total between $2,500-$5,000. Deputies said most of the expenses did not appear to be in the veteran’s benefit, such as charges for bars, movie theaters, adult entertainment, GTL jail telephone calls and Walt Disney World. Over a period of eight months, deputies said approximately $18,000 to $20,000 was spent in this manner.  According to police, the caregiver moved in to the veteran’s apartment and lived there rent-free, yet made no attempt to improve the living environment even after multiple requests and re-checks. Acting on a complaint submitted to the U.S. Department of Children and Families, deputies who responded to the veteran’s apartment reported seeing “an extreme amount of clutter,” overflowing garbage, a bug infestation and rotting food. The veteran was found alone wearing nothing but an unchanged diaper, according to detectives.

Protecting Senior Loved Ones

This kind of deplorable neglect and abuse of a senior or dependent adult can really only be prevented if family, loved ones, and neighbors stay involved in the elder’s or disabled person’s life. Id a loved one or friend is under the care of an in-home caregiver, visit often and look for any signs of neglect or abuse such as bruises, pressure wounds/bed sores, scratch marks, weight loss, or behavioral changes that might suggest they are being abused, neglect, or overmedicated.  Monitor all financial accounts of the older person and pay special attention to where their monthly Social Security or pension benefits are being deposited.  Never ever allow the senior to give a caregiver or nursing home staff member a Power of Attorney.  If you suspect abuse, call elder law counsel to help you pursue all available remedies against anyone responsible for abuse, including an award of attorneys’ fees and costs for bringing your suit under Cal. Welf. & Inst. Code § 15657.5.

Contact Us

If you or someone you love is an older or dependent adult victim of any neglect or financial abuse in San Francisco or elsewhere in California, call Ingrid M. Evans at Evans Law Firm, Inc. at (415) 441-8669, or by email at <a href=”mailto:info@evanslaw.com”>info@evanslaw.com</a>. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267).

[1] Evans Law Firm, Inc. was not involved in the reported case in any way.

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