Is Your Loved One a Senior Fraud Victim?
A Modesto Financial Elder Abuse Lawyer Can Fight for Restitution
Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for ill-meaning individuals to exploit the elderly. In fact, according to a 2018 report by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), financial elder abuse costs victims at least $2.9 billion annually. Seniors in group homes and other assisted living facilities are most susceptible to instances of senior fraud. If you suspect financial or another form of elder abuse, it is important to take steps to safeguard your loved one. A Modesto financial elder abuse lawyer from our firm can help you identify and fight against elder abuse. After examining the details and looking over evidence, our firm can help you file a strong financial elder abuse claim.
At Arata, Swingle, Van Egmond & Heitlinger, we believe in protecting families and their elderly loved ones. For decades, our firm has helped people understand elder law and plan their estate in a way that can prevent elder abuse. Our experience is based on reliable legal strategies and compassionate representation. No matter the size of your estate or the circumstances surrounding your loved ones’ financial elder abuse, we can help.
What Is Financial Elder Abuse in California?
Senior elders and dependent adults have protections under California law. Financial elder abuse does more than hurt your loved one — it can have a long-lasting impact on your family’s legacy. Some common examples of financial elder abuse in California involve:
- Refusing to Pay Bills or Purchase Supplies: Senior fraud routinely involves an individual that is in some control of a senior’s assets and is refusing to pay his or her bills or otherwise not using the funds to assist the elderly individual. For example, a caretaker could be pocketing money instead of using it for the senior’s needs.
- Unauthorized Payments: Some caretakers have access to credit cards, debit cards and other payment methods. Unfortunately, an ill-meaning caretaker can use this as an opportunity to make fraudulent withdrawals or purchases.
- Fraudulent Changes to a Will or Power of Attorney: If someone has access to your loved one’s documents, he or she may be able to make fraudulent changes. For instance, caretakers might write themselves into the will of the senior in their charge.
How to Stop Financial Elder Abuse
The first step to stopping financial elder abuse is identifying a party that may be taking advantage of your loved one. For example, many forms of financial elder abuse involve mail fraud or internet scams. These scams ask someone to transfer funds so that they can eventually release greater funds to the senior. Other examples involve home repair work. For instance, someone knocks on the door and offers to make home improvements, like landscaping. However, they either do not perform the work, do a shoddy job or take the money and run. The best way to prevent senior fraud is to contact a Modesto financial elder abuse lawyer who will help you:
- Communicate Finances: One of the biggest risk factors to elder abuse is isolation and mental impairment. Since this is the case, it is important that you reach out to your loved one. Ask them how they are paying bills, if they are making new friends and if they are willing to accept help with some financially-related tasks.
- Make a Central Account: The more accounts you have, the more difficult it can be to keep track of your elderly loved one’s finances. Since this is the case, you should contact an elder law attorney that can help you assign beneficiary designations according to your loved one’s needs.
- Implement Checks and Balances: An elderly loved one should have legal documents in place that will enable you and/or other family members to help when needed. For example, you might consider a will, power of attorney, a financial manager or a healthcare proxy.
Is Your Elderly Loved One Being Taken Advantage Of? Call Us for a Free Consultation
Do you believe that a healthcare provider is dipping into your family’s finances? Has a stranger shown up to your loved one’s home, offering to do work around the house? Are you concerned that someone is taking advantage of your aging relative? We believe that no family should live in fear over the wellbeing of their loved one. If you have questions about your options, a Modesto financial elder abuse attorney from our firm can help.
For decades, our Modesto attorneys have helped stop senior fraud. We believe that each case we take is an opportunity to set an example for the future. If you have questions about your elderly loved one’s rights and options, our firm is here for you. To schedule a free consultation, contact us online or call our firm at (209)522-2211.