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Sep 28, 2021 by |

Santa Clara County Financial Elder Abuse Attorney: In-Home Caregivers Accused of Stealing From Elderly Patients

ATTORNEY NEWSLETTER

Caregiver Allegedly Cashed 43 Checks Off Victim’s Account

Another Caregiver Forged Checks And Made Zelle Transfers

Families Detect Fraud And Theft

Every time a stranger or caregiver enters the home of an elderly person there is a risk of financial elder abuse.  The amounts stolen can be relatively small in the beginning and then typically escalate if the caregiver is getting away with the fraud.  If no one is monitoring a senior’s accounts, the theft can continue for a long time and add up into thousands of dollars or much more.  Financial elder abuse is a crime and grounds for a civil lawsuit for damages under California law.  See Cal. Penal Code § 368 (crime of elder abuse) and Cal. Welf. & Inst. Code § 15610.30 (definition of financial elder abuse for civil liability).  Evans Law Firm. Inc. represents victims and their families, and pursue all persons responsible, including the owners, administrators and staff directly responsible or as supervisors with a duty to protect residents from any kind of abuse. If you or a loved one has been the victim of financial elder abuse in Santa Clara County 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).

Recent Caregiver Arrests

In one reported caregiver case,[1] an in-home caregiver has been accused of stealing more than $78,000 from an elderly woman she cared for in the victim’s home.  Investigators said the caregiver cashed 43 checks worth $78,740.80 from the 87-year-old woman’s account over a fourteen-month period.  The investigation began when family members noticed the fraudulent checks. The victim told police she trusted the caregiver, who received more than $3,000 a week for her help.  After months of investigating, police said they have video surveillance and bank documents linking the caregiver to the case.  The checks were allegedly made out to “cash.”  In another recent case, a caregiver was arrested for using her access to an elderly couple’s account by forging an elderly couple’s checks and transferring money out of their accounts by Zelle transfers.  She allegedly stole more than $300,000 from the couple through the forged checks and transfers over a three-year period.

Preventing Caregiver Theft

If you have an older loved one under the care of an in-home caregiver, make sure they don’t have any accessible cash, checks or credit cards accessible to the aides who enter the home. Also, make sure that financial information like account numbers and Social Security numbers are kept away from a caregiver’s glance.  Monitor credit cards and bank accounts online as frequently as possible.  Have financial statements and important papers mailed to your own address so others do not have access to you loved one’s business mail.  Never, ever grant a power of attorney to a caregiver or nursing home staff member.  Accompany older loved ones whenever they go shopping or go to the bank or have any sort of meeting about financial matters.  You can be there to protect them from outright theft and the problems they may get into if they are sold an unsuitable investment or insurance product like an annuity.  Perhaps most important of all, if you suspect anything wrong, do something about it right away.

Contact Us

If you suspect financial elder abuse of a loved one, friend or neighbor in Santa Clara County, or elsewhere in California, call Ingrid M. Evans at Evans Law Firm, Inc. at (415) 441-8669, or by email at info@evanslaw.com. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267).  Ingrid pursues all available remedies for families and injured seniors against those responsible.

[1] Evans Law Firm, Inc. was not involved in any of these cases in any way.

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