As elder financial abuse attorneys for Los Angeles, we represent trust beneficiaries and estate heirs whose rights have been violated by a wrongdoer. And when it comes to cases of financial exploitation of seniors in LA, the news is worrying for families who want to protect vulnerable loved ones.
The elderly population in areas of Los Angeles has been increasing at rates between 50 and 99 percent, and that means that incidents of elder financial abuse are also increasing in frequency. One of the most tragic aspects of this phenomenon is that more often than not, perpetrators of abuse are family members. According to statistics from the National Center on Elder Abuse, 60 percent of the time, the perpetrator is a family member, while two-thirds of these perpetrators are adult children or spouses.
What are some signs of elder financial abuse to look out for? Watch for irregularities in banking activity, including unauthorized withdrawals and the addition of new signatories to an account. Maybe a distant cousin or other relative suddenly takes excessive interest in an ailing elder's welfare and volunteers to "help out" in order to gain access to trust assets or even transfer a home or other property into their ownership. Keep in mind that conservatorships, power of attorney, or the position of trustee can all be abused to loot a senior's wealth. Excessive persuasion, pressure, and manipulation amount to undue influence that could result in the terms of a will or trust being changed to favor the wrongdoer.
California law comes down hard on perpetrators of elder financial abuse in order to gain recovery for those who were wronged. Under the state's Elder Abuse and Dependent Adult Civil Protection Act, victims and their families can file civil lawsuits for jury trial and the imposition of damages. If you're an LA resident and you've encountered elder financial abuse against an elderly loved one, you can call us at Hackard Law. Our main mission is to safeguard client interests and prevent any further harm. We regularly represent clients in estate, trust, and probate litigation throughout Los Angeles. Our number is 213-357-5200. We'll be glad to listen to your story and see how best to help you.