From Joel’s interview for the Masters of the Courtroom series on ReelLawyers.com.
Financial elder abuse is the exploitation of an elder’s finances by a perpetrator who uses deceit and an elder’s cognitive impairment against them. Elder financial abuse can apply to anyone over the age of 65 in California. It can include a wide range of scenarios, from an elder unknowingly signing their rights to their property away, to being coerced or deceived into making bad investments.
Elder financial abuse is a serious problem related to the fact that many elderly individuals have mental impairments or lapses of judgment due to old age. Perpetrators use this against vulnerable seniors and prey on them for their money, property, stocks, or other assets.
If you suspect that a loved one has been subjected to any kind of elder financial abuse, contact Mr. Bryant and his team of San Diego elder abuse lawyers today. With years of experience and a practice devoted exclusively to elder law, they can help you.
Elder abuse can result from an individual building a relationship with and gaining the trust of an elderly person, only to financially exploit them. Some qualities that make senior citizens more susceptible to abuse include:
Sadly, in most cases the abuser is someone the elder or their family trusted. They may be a caretaker, family member, friend, attorney, stockbroker, financial advisor, insurance agent or any other person who gains access to the elder’s assets, or who persuades the elder to make an improper investment or take out an unsuitable mortgage. Financial elder abuse generally occurs after a relationship has been established, creating a false sense of trust or even friendship between the elder and the abuser.
However, sometimes even unfamiliar individuals can perpetrate abuse, as those lacking mental capacity or good judgement can easily be tricked or scammed. Perpetrators of elder abuse may have the following characteristics:
The perpetrators of elder abuse may also harbor other characteristics that enable them to successfully prey on older adults. They also use deceptive tactics to gain an elder’s trust and ultimately take advantage of them. Such characteristics or tendencies include:
Financial elder abuse is a very serious societal problem. Some forms of financial elder abuse that Attorney Bryant can successfully deal with include:
A conservatorship is a court case where a judge appoints a responsible person (“conservator”) to care for another adult (“conservatee”) who cannot care for himself or herself or manage his or her own finances. A conservator is someone who has obtained the right to take control of the conservatee’s finances and/or medical and personal care.
If your loved one shows signs of being unable to handle their finances or resist fraud or undue influence, then a conservator of the estate may be appointed. If the elder is unable to properly provide for their own needs for physical health, food, clothing , or shelter, then a conservator of the person may be obtained. Priority for being appointed conservator is first given to a spouse, then to siblings and children.
A trusted lawyer or family member can also keep an eye on the elder’s assets without fully taking control or assuming the position of conservator. Still, an elder who is competent enough to handle their money can be taken advantage of if they are lied to and tricked by a skilled perpetrator. In these cases, the trail leading to the perpetrator is difficult but not always impossible to notice.
Attorney Bryant will conduct an immediate investigation to determine which parties are potentially responsible for losses and make sure that:
Given that financial elder abuse is rarely prosecuted by criminal authorities, the first thing to do if you suspect abuse is to reach out to an experienced, knowledge elder law litigation attorney. It is important to react quickly to recover stolen finances. Contact Attorney Joel Bryant and his team right away so that investigations can begin immediately.
If your loved one has been the victim of financial elder abuse, Joel Bryant and his experienced legal team can help you, as they have helped many previous clients. His firm has successfully handled many cases where someone has taken advantage of an elderly person by lying to them, unduly influencing them, pressuring them, or exploiting the elder’s cognitive impairment. Time is of the essence, so call today for more information and to schedule a free case evaluation. The quicker you take action, the more likely that the assets taken from your loved one will be rightfully returned, and that justice will be brought upon the perpetrator!
“I handle all types of serious financial elder abuse cases. My cases involve loss of real estate. For example, a situation where an elder unwittingly signs a quitclaim deed or a grant deed, which gives title to their own property to someone else. Those cases may involve a person who gets a power of attorney from an elder. Many times, the elder doesn’t even know what they’ve signed, and the person uses that power of attorney to go into the elder’s bank accounts and investment accounts and take all their property. Other financial elder abuse cases may involve bad investment advice. And a good example of this is I’ve seen some financial professionals will sell elders’ investments that they don’t need or cannot afford. In the financial elder abuse arena, it’s particularly important that if a person suspects their loved one has been the victim of financial elder abuse, to contact me as soon as possible. This is important because, in financial elder abuse cases, time is of the essence. We need to take timely action so that we can recover the elder’s assets. The longer a person waits to contact my firm regarding a financial elder abuse case, the longer the elder abuser has to spend, transfer, or hide the assets they improperly obtained from the elder.”
“Joel and his team were the help I needed to approach the nursing home that didn’t take good care of my grandmother. With Joel’s help, my grandmother was fairly compensated for the injuries she suffered as a result of the nursing home’s neglect and abuse.”Andrea C.
“When one of the most tragic events happened in my life, Joel Bryant and Jason Julius were there for me when I needed someone the most. They both were very professional, honest, compassionate, and supportive."Brent R.
“Joel was amazingly accessible, by phone, email and often, in person, and still is. He is a professional with an understanding heart, and a sense of humor. I still feel very fortunate to have had him on my side.”Michelle B.