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Cherry Hill Nursing Home Abuse Lawyers: Financial Abuse
Cherry Hill nursing home financial abuse attorneys advocating for elderly victims of fraud and theft in South Jersey
Seniors who live in nursing homes need their money to pay for the nursing home living quarters and nursing home services. Unfortunately, many seniors often place their trust in staff members who take advantage of them. At Ferrara & Gable, our Cherry Hill nursing home financial abuse lawyers understand the different types of financial abuse that harm residents and what steps nursing homes should take to prevent each type of financial abuse. We work with financial professionals when necessary to determine the full scope of the financial losses. We also work to require that nursing homes implement policies and procedures to prevent future financial damage to the residents.
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- What is financial abuse of a Cherry Hill nursing home resident?
- Who is financially exploiting long-term care residents in South Jersey?
- What are the signs of financial abuse by a Cherry hill nursing home?
- Can Cherry Hill nursing homes be held accountable for financial abuse?
- What damages can seniors obtain for financial abuse at Cherry Hill nursing homes?
- Do you have a Cherry Hill nursing home financial abuse lawyer near me?
What is financial abuse of a Cherry Hill nursing home resident?
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau states that financial abuse includes taking money without permission, failing to repay the money taken, charging too much for services, and failing to provide the services the resident paid for. According to Consumer Affairs, more than 3.5 million seniors suffer financial exploitation every year costing seniors nearly 3 billion dollars.
Financial abuse is common in nursing homes because many seniors have cognitive impairments. Many seniors also have physical impairments which can make simple tasks like going to a bank or using a computer to make transactions difficult.
Other types of financial abuse include pressuring or forcing seniors to create powers of attorney in favor of staff members instead of a close relative and or creating wills that benefit staff members or others who normally wouldn’t be expected to receive any type of inheritance. Financial abuse can include forging checks, deposit slips, and Social Security checks, making ATM withdrawals without consent, and any other suspicious or irregular financial transactions.
What are the signs of financial abuse by a Cherry hill nursing home?
At Ferrara & Gable, our Cherry Hill nursing home financial abuse lawyers review the following signs of financial abuse with the seniors themselves and any authorized representatives of the senior:
- Bank account charges or practices that are unusual or can’t be explained
- Unusual withdraws from bank accounts and any other financial accounts
- Unusual entry into safe deposit boxes
- Added names onto certificates of deposits, homes, cars, bank accounts, stocks, and anything of value that is titled
- Unauthorized ATM withdrawals
- Changes to a will, a trust, or other documents that are prepared in anticipation of a senior’s death
- Missing personal items
- Unpaid bills even though there should be plenty of funds in the senior’s accounts
- Bills for services the nursing home resident clearly doesn’t need
- A forgery of the senior’s name on any document
- A power of attorney in favor of someone who is not a member of the Cherry Hill nursing home resident’s family
- Anxiety and unresponsiveness when financial matters are discussed
- Missing money and missing personal items
Seniors who have dementia or Alzheimer's are especially prone to being taken advantage of financially.
Can Cherry Hill nursing homes be held accountable for financial abuse?
Residents of nursing homes can file a complaint with the New Jersey Office of the State Long-Term Care Ombudsman. This state agency will investigate the claim and try to resolve the claim. If the claim cannot be resolved, our Cherry Hill nursing home financial abuse lawyers can file a civil complaint against the nursing home and any individuals who harmed as resident financially.
Complaints of theft, fraud, and other types of financial abuse can also be reported to the police and other local law enforcement officials.
Once we’ve conducted a thorough review, we’ll contact every financial institution that has information about your finances, including banks, credit unions, credit card companies, life insurance companies, and other financial companies. We’ll review the senior’s legal documents including their wills, powers of attorney, trusts, health care directives, deeds, car titles, and other legal documents that may affect the senior’s financial assets and income.
Nursing homes may be accountable for financial abuse if they:
- Bill for unnecessary services or bill for more than the fair market value.
- Fail to secure any assets that the senior entrusts with the nursing home such as jewelry and any asset the nursing home resident agrees to keep in a safety deposit box, vault, or other place of safe-keeping for property.
- Fail to conduct background checks on their employees to determine if there is any history of theft, substance abuse, or other indicators that the employee may have an incentive or likelihood to commit financial abuse.
- Fail to respond to any complaints by a resident or the resident’s representative regarding financial matters.
- Fail to instruct employees about the do’s and don’ts of financial interactions with the residents.
- Fail to alternate the staff members who help residents so the resident doesn’t rely too much on any one staff member.
Nursing home administrators and family members should understand the warning signs of financial abuse and respond immediately. They should know who handles the patient’s finances – whether it’s the resident, a family member, a guardian, a trustee, or someone else.
Generally, nursing homes in Cherry Hill are liable for the actions of all their employees.
Cognizant nursing home residents and the people the senior trusts should document any suspicions they have that financial abuse is occurring.