Elder abuse can come in many forms, including physical, emotional, sexual, psychological, as well as just plain neglect. One form of elder abuse which is often overlooked until a great deal of damage has been done is financial abuse. Also called financial exploitation or material exploitation, financial abuse can be defined as the unauthorized, improper, or illegal use of a senior citizen’s funds, assets, property, or credit. If you suspect an elderly loved one is a victim of this type of abuse, speak with an Orange County financial elder abuse lawyer to explore your legal options.
The elderly are particularly vulnerable to financial abuse because of poor eyesight, dementia, and other physical and mental incapacities.
What Should You Do If You Suspect Financial Elder Abuse?
If you suspect an elderly loved one or another family member is the subject of financial abuse, you need to take action immediately before any more damage occurs. Your first step should be to call the Los Angeles County Elder Abuse Hotline at (800) 4-R-SENIORS (477-3646).
After you’ve reported the elder abuse to the hotline, your next call should be to the Orange County financial elder abuse lawyer at Siegel Law. Since 2002, Mr. Siegel’s practice has been dedicated to protecting the rights of the elderly and getting financial compensation on their behalf. Call (562) 645-4145 today for a free consultation.
Types of Financial Abuse
There are countless ways an unscrupulous individual can attempt to steal from an elderly person, particularly if his or her mind is not as sharp as it once was.
The following are some of the more common methods used in elder financial abuse:
Cashing in Social Security or pension checks.
Forging a signature on a document, such as a contract or will.
Using credit cards or credit card numbers without permission.
Making withdrawals from bank accounts.
Stealing money or possessions.
Coercing or tricking him/her into signing a document.
Abusing power of attorney.
These are some of the more common forms of elder financial abuse, but by no means all of them. An Orange County elder abuse attorney experienced in financial elder abuse cases can help investigate all the forms of financial elder abuse your loved one has suffered.
What Are the Warning Signs of Financial Abuse?
Always remain alert for signs of missing money or property, and keep tabs on a senior’s bank accounts and billing statements.
The following are red flags indicating that financial abuse has taken place or is currently taking place:
Suspicious or unexplained money transfers to another individual.
Suspicious or unexplained withdrawals from bank accounts.
Sudden changes to wills or other financial documents.
Missing money or personal belongings.
Questionable charges on credit cards.
Unexplained checks written out to another party.
Additional names added to wills, titles, etc.
Forged signatures on any documents.
An elderly person’s reluctance to talk about financial issues.
If you see any of the above signs, reach out to a dedicated financial elder abuse attorney in Orange County as soon as possible.
Who Commits Elder Financial Abuse?
You may be wondering what type of person would take advantage of an elderly person for financial gain. Well, sadly, family members are often the ones committing elder financial abuse. In-home caregivers also have access to an elderly person’s financial information, credit cards, checkbook, and more. If an elderly person is in a nursing home, any member of the facility’s staff can gain access to his finances with a little work and deception.
Speak With an Orange County Financial Elder Abuse Attorney Today
If you have a loved one who is vulnerable to financial abuse, you need to remain vigilant and regularly examine his or her finances. If you do notice anything suspicious, call the Orange County financial elder abuse lawyer at Siegel Law for a free case evaluation. Contact us today to learn how we can help you.
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