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Jun 28, 2024 by |

San Francisco Financial Elder Abuse Attorney: Social Worker Indicted On Multiple Charges For Allegedly Defrauding An Elderly Victim


Suspect Placed Seniors Into Care Facilities

Convinced Victim To Give Her Power Of Attorney

Safeguarding Older Loved Ones From Financial Abuse

Financial powers of attorney (POAs) grant full authority over a person’s financial affairs, and medical powers of attorney, known in California as an Advance Health Care Directives (AHCDs), grant authority over medical decisions and health care issues. The forms for both financial and medical POAs are found in California statutes. See Cal. Prob. Code §§ 4401 (statutory form for financial POA) and 4701 (statutory form for AHCD). The person granting the authority is referred to as the “principal” and the person(s) to whom the powers are granted is referred to as “agent(s)” or “attorney(s)-in-fact.”  Misuse of financial POAs for the personal benefit of the agent violates the law, and, when the principal is a senior, constitutes the crime of financial elder abuse (Penal Code § 368) and is grounds for civil liability on the part of the abusing agent (Cal. Welf. & Inst. Code § 15610.30) for extra damages and an award of attorneys’ fees and expenses for having to bring a case against a dishonest agent.  Cal. Welf. & Inst. Code § 15657.5If you or a loved one has been the victim of financial elder abuse by a caregiver or other person in San Francisco, call us today at (415)441-8669.  We will pursue all persons responsible for a senior’s injury. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267).

Recent Case Example

In one reported case,[1] an employee of a senior service provider who was responsible for placing seniors into care facilities has been indicted on multiple charges of financial elder abuse and theft. According to authorities, the victim (age 79) lived alone with no family or close friends. The victim had multiple accounts at local banks. When the victim could no longer safely live at her home, a social worker was assigned as a caseworker to aid the victim in finding placement. During this time, the individual allegedly used her position to “befriend” the victim with a goal of obtaining access to her money. In February of 2023, the woman allegedly convinced the victim, who was hospitalized at the time, to sign a Power of Attorney (POA) that gave the woman control over the victim’s finances as well as the right to be paid a fee for her services. No witnesses were allegedly present for this signing, but witness signatures were allegedly fraudulently added to the POA after the fact.  Within days of obtaining the POA, the woman allegedly proceeded to access the victim’s accounts and modify them to name herself as the “Payable on Death” beneficiary. Over the next months, she allegedly moved large sums of money from an account at one bank to an account at a credit union. In October of 2023, the woman allegedly named herself as a joint account holder on that credit union account. This alleged act gave her full access to all money owned by the victim, in violation of the scope of the POA.

In total, it is alleged that the woman directly obtained $13,600 of the victim’s money directly and had control over more than $1 million dollars of the victim’s money before investigators at the credit union froze the accounts. Police were then notified to conduct a full criminal investigation, which resulted in these charges.

Protecting Older Loved Ones

Never, ever grant a power of attorney to a caregiver or social worker or other stranger.  Visit your older loved one as regularly as you can to see firsthand how they are doing.  Accompany older loved ones whenever they go shopping or go to the bank or have any sort of meeting about financial matters.  Most important of all, if you suspect anything wrong, do something about it right away.

Contact Us

Ingrid M. Evans represents elder and dependent adults in San Francisco who are victims of any kind of financial exploitation or other abuse.  Ingrid can be reached at (415) 441-8669 or TOLL FREE 1-888-80EVANS (888-503-8267), or email us at <a href=””></a>. 

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

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