The golden years of life are meant to be cherished. After decades of hard work and providing for families, our elders deserve peace, respect, and security. Yet, alarmingly, many seniors fall victim to financial abuse, robbing them of their financial stability and peace of mind. As a trusted figure in the fight against this atrocity, Los Angeles financial elder abuse attorney Susan B Geffen wants you to be armed with the knowledge to detect, prevent, and combat financial elder abuse in California.
Detecting Financial Elder Abuse: Signs to Look Out For
Whether you are a caregiver or family member, it is important to be aware of when your elderly loved one may be falling victim to a financial scam or other form of elder financial abuse. Here are some warning signs:
- Unexplained Bank Withdrawals or Transfers: If an elder family member begins to have mysterious withdrawals or transfers from their accounts, it’s a glaring red flag.
- New Friends and Questionable Relationships: Sometimes, predators will forge relationships with seniors with the sole intention of exploitation. If an elder starts a new relationship and financial changes ensue, it’s crucial to investigate.
- Changes in Legal Documents: Unexpected changes in wills, power of attorney assignments, property transfers, or other legal documents can indicate foul play.
- Neglect Despite Financial Ability: If an elder has the means to take care of their health, living conditions, and other needs but is living in neglect, someone might be misusing their funds.
- Secrecy and Sudden Fearfulness: Elders might become secretive about their finances or show sudden fear or anxiety when money matters arise, indicating potential manipulation or threats.
California’s Stance on Financial Elder Abuse
California recognizes the vulnerability of its senior population and has stringent laws against elder abuse, including financial exploitation. California’s Elder Abuse and Dependent Adult Civil Protection Act (EADACPA) provides a framework to combat and redress financial elder abuse.
The Role of a Financial Elder Abuse Attorney
Financial elder abuse can be complicated, both emotionally and legally. This is where the expertise of an attorney like Susan B Geffen becomes invaluable.
- Thorough Investigation: Attorneys are trained to dissect complex financial records, bank statements, and transactions to trace any illicit activities or unauthorized financial actions.
- Protection and Recovery: Besides stopping the abuse, an attorney will also aim to recover assets or money taken fraudulently. They may also help in setting up trusts or financial safeguards to prevent future abuse.
- Legal Proceedings: If the situation calls for it, an attorney can take the abuser to court, ensuring they face the consequences of their actions.
- Guidance and Support: Beyond the legal aspect, the process can be emotionally taxing for the elder and their family. A seasoned attorney provides not just legal advice but also emotional support, guiding the family through each step.
Steps to Take if You Suspect Financial Elder Abuse
As a family member, friend or caregiver, here are some action steps you can take if you believe they are being taken advantage of financially:
- Open Communication: Talk to the elder person gently and privately, ensuring they feel safe and understood.
- Document Everything: Keep records of all suspicious transactions, changes in behavior, or any other evidence of potential abuse.
- Contact Authorities: If you believe the elder is in immediate danger, contact local law enforcement. For concerns not requiring immediate intervention, consider contacting Adult Protective Services in California.
- Consult an Attorney: To ensure legal protection and recovery, consult with a financial elder abuse attorney like Susan B Geffen. They can provide guidance tailored to the unique aspects of your situation.
Consult with an Experienced Elder Abuse Attorney in LA
Elder financial abuse is not just a violation of trust; it’s a heinous crime that strips seniors of their dignity, security, and the fruits of a lifetime of labor. However, with vigilance, open communication, and the right legal expertise, we can protect our loved ones from falling victim to such exploitation.
If you suspect a senior in your life is experiencing financial abuse, don’t wait. Time is of the essence. With the right support, like that of Susan B Geffen, you can ensure that justice is served and your loved ones are protected. Remember, our elders spent their lives taking care of us. It’s our turn to protect and care for them.