Elder neglect, abuse, and financial exploitation are on the rise in South Florida nursing homes, senior care facilities, and amongst in-home caregivers, which is why we are dedicated to preserving and protecting our clients' personal rights by utilizing our comprehensive legal knowledge to defend against such cases involving elderly exploitation in West Palm Beach, FL. Authorities in South Florida are aggressive in their pursuit of anyone suspected of preying on vulnerable elders and The Law Offices of Matthew Konecky can assist you if you or a loved one is facing similar charges. Our skilled elder financial exploitation defense attorney represents clients accused of crimes against the elderly and disabled persons such as assault, battery, neglect, theft, and fraud.
The majority of allegations of financial exploitation of the elderly include disagreements between family members or carers over how an elderly person's income, bank accounts, and other assets should be managed.
Florida Statute 825.103, labeled "exploitation of an elderly person or disabled adult," made it easier for prosecutors to convict those who prey on the elderly and increased the penalties that might be applied following a conviction.
The most common signs of elder financial abuse are detected when:
- Checks or bank statements made payable to the offender
- Fraudulent legal documents or checks
- Large bank withdrawals or account transfers
- Missing items or property
- Mood swings (such as depression or anxiety)
- Changes to an elderly person's will or power of attorney
- The elderly person signed unusual contracts that they did not comprehend. The elderly person is unaware of their financial status.
- Eviction notices and unpaid bills
- Disconnection of utilities if bills are not paid
- Unexplained withdrawals that the elderly person could not have made
Punishment for Crimes Against The Elderly in West Palm Beach
Abuse and neglect of the elderly is a serious felony offense in Florida. If there is no bodily harm to the victim, the crime is classified as a third-degree felony. If the victim has suffered physical harm or permanent deformity, the crime is classified as a first-degree felony.
If you willfully stole from an elderly person or a disabled adult, or if you were in a position of trust where you could access assets, you would be guilty of a third-degree felony. Generally, most elder abuse claims in Florida involve fraud or embezzlement.
If the property seized is worth $10,000 or more but less than $50,000, the offense is a second-degree felony punishable by up to 15 years in prison and a $10,000 fine. If the property is valued at less than $10,000, the offense is classified as a third-degree felony, punishable by up to five years in jail and a $5,000 fine.
Lawyer in West Palm Beach for Exploiting the Elderly Crimes
It is stressful enough to be charged with a crime. A conviction of elder abuse might jeopardize your image, especially if you work as a caretaker. If you or a loved one is a caregiver for an elderly person and has been charged with or is being investigated for financial exploitation of an elderly person, contact us today for a case evaluation. In many circumstances, our white collar crime defense attorney may be able to get the charges dropped or reduced. Contact our office or call us at (561) 671-5995 to have your case reviewed today.