Financial Elder Abuse

Financial Elder Abuse

What is Financial Elder Abuse?

            Financial elder abuse occurs when a person or entity takes, secretes, appropriates, obtains or retains real or personal property of an elder (age 65 or older) adult or dependent adult for a wrongful use or with intent to defraud, or both.  Causes of action for financial elder abuse also can be stated against anyone who assists in these acts, or anyone who does these acts by way of undue influence (i.e. a caretaker). There is a presumption of financial abuse when the defendant knew or should have known that his or her conduct would be harmful to the elder. 




            Financial elder abuse is codified in California Welfare and Institutions Code section 15610 et seq.   The statute provides for the award of attorney’s fees in these actions if financial elder abuse is proven by a preponderance of the evidence (more likely than not).  Punitive damages are also available if the defendant acted with malice, oppression or fraud. 

What Does a Financial Elder Abuse Case Look Like?

            Financial elder abuse can arise in many different situations.  If a plaintiff is age 65 or older and a resident of California, the cause of action for financial elder abuse should be considered.    The most common examples are predatory lending or undue influence of an elder into altering his or her will.  However, our firm is currently representing an elder plaintiff in a lawsuit against a defendant who has improperly retained an interest or lien on the title to her real property. 

Legal Counsel Can Help You Assess the Claim and Protect Your Rights

            If you, a family member or a friend may be the victim of elder abuse, please contact Bogaards Davis for a free consultation.