POWER OF ATTORNEY
ELDER ABUSE LAW

BC ABUSE OF POWER OF ATTORNEY LAWYERS

MacLean Estate Litigation Power of Attorney Elder Abuse Law lawyers warn that a BC Power of Attorney “POA” is not a licence to steal, and prompt action by our estate litigation lawyers, the Public Guardian and Trustee and even the police is the only proper response.  So what exactly is: Power of Attorney Elder Abuse Law?

POWER OF ATTORNEY ELDER ABUSE LAW

Power of Attorney Elder Abuse Law

Power of Attorney Elder Abuse Law lawyer, Lorne N MacLean, QC

Power of Attorney Elder Abuse Law is an expanding practice area for the skilled MacLean Estate Litigation Lawyers. BC Elder abuse is more common than ever and financial, mental and physical abuse of seniors is both a civil litigation issue and criminal offence. Our Power of Attorney Elder Abuse Law Lawyers warn family members to be vigilant in guarding against undue influence, isolation of their elderly family members and even theft by a Power of Attorney. Our Power of Attorney Elder Abuse Law Lawyers can help you if you believe a loved one is being scammed by their Power of Attorney or unethical third party. If you have concerns over the physical safety of a loved one you fear is suffering from elder abuse this Vancouver Police Department link can assist you.

WEALTHY SENIORS ARE TARGETS

Wealthy Vancouver and BC aging senior boomers have accumulated unprecedented millions in real estate and investment wealth. These elderly individuals look forward to their golden years and a comfortable-if not high end-retirement life style. Unfortunately, these wealthy senior boomers are targets for predatory marriages and unscrupulous fraudsters. Get more information here on how to prevent elder abuse.

Power of Attorney Elder Abuse Law deals with cases where a wealthy BC senior has put someone they trust in charge of their financial matters. In BC, a Power of Attorney is used to enable a third party to make legal and financial decisions for an elderly donor, whereas a Representation Agreement is used for health care decisions.

POWER OF ATTORNEY ELDER ABUSE LAWYERS HELP STOP POA FRAUDSTERS

Our Power of Attorney Elder Abuse Lawyers deals with cases where the person the donor trusted to help them as a Power of Attorney betrays them. A rogue Power of Attorney fails to act properly to assist and manage the donor elderly person’s affairs and in many cases commits the ultimate betrayal by stealing money and transferring assets for their own benefit.

A recent Business in Vancouver article on the topic quotes a federal government report stating:

Unfortunately, elder abuse is not uncommon. In fact, 45 per cent of Canadian seniors experience some form of abuse from age 65 and on, according to the Department of Justice. While the type of abuse varies, the most common form is financial and emotional, and one often accompanies the other.

Perhaps most unsettling: 64 per cent of victims know their abusers.

DUTIES OF A POWER OF ATTORNEY

In BC the most common POA is called an enduring power of attorney and the POA in this case can make decisions on behalf of the adult, or do anything that the adult may lawfully do by an agent in relation to the adult’s financial affairs and their power can be defined to take effect only while the donor is capable, only when incapable, or both.

An attorney must act honestly and in good faith, exercise the care, diligence and skill of a reasonably prudent person, act within the authority given in the enduring power of attorney and under any enactment, and keep prescribed records and produce the prescribed records for inspection and copying at the request of the adult. An attorney must keep the adult’s property separate from his or her own property.

POWER OF ATTORNEY ELDER ABUSE LAW – WHAT IS ELDER ABUSE?

The federal government publication ELDER ABUSE IS WRONG defines BC Elder abuse:

Elder abuse is an action, deliberate behaviour or failure to act, by a person in a position of trust—like an adult child, family member, friend or caregiver that causes or risks causing an older adult:

  • Physical, sexual or emotional harm; or
  • Damage to or loss of property or assets.

EXAMPLES OF POWER OF ATTORNEY ELDER ABUSE LAW

Classic examples our Power of Attorney Elder Abuse Law lawyers see:

  • The BC power of attorney (POA) holder transfers bank accounts, securities, cars or real estate to himself or herself.
  • The BC Power of attorney hides the assets of the elderly donor either before the they die or after the elderly person has passed away. An investigation of the donor’s banking records, sadly, can reveal that the POA was using the hapless senior’s ATM debit card, credit cards and even personal lines of credit as their very own piggy bank.
  • The POA may fraudulently use the donor’s money or make land transfers, or spend the victim’s own money for the POA’s expensive travel, jewellery, restaurant meals, designer clothing, home improvements and fancy cars.
  • The senior is for the most part completely unaware of the abuse or consents to the abuse because of fear of being put in a rest home or being abandoned.

If you are concerned a loved one is being taken advantage of read this great article by Lorne N MacLean, QC.

The government of BC online publication “Elder Abuse and Neglect” provides some great free information that can help stop this crime against aging loved ones:

Abuse and neglect of older adults can happen to anyone who depends on the care of others. Older adults can be the victim of abuse by their adult child, a caregiver, friend or anyone in a position of trust or authority.

Abuse and neglect of takes many different forms: physical, sexual, emotional and financial. Older adults with disabilities are at greater risk for abuse and may have a harder time reporting what is happening and asking for help.

IT IS CRUCIAL TO PROMPTLY HIRE AN EXPERIENCED POWER OF ATTORNEY

Hiring an experienced Power of Attorney Elder Abuse lawyer and starting BC court proceedings promptly, can help:

  • Remove the authority of the POA abuser or joint account holder to use or access the victim’s funds and land;
  • Locate, identify and preserve assets;
  • Appoint a court ordered committee to ensure a loved one is no longer victimized;
  • Get immediate freezing orders and injunctive relief to protect your loved one from further financial losses;
  • Reverse the effect of any fraudulent transactions and to recover missing and hidden assets;
  • Void any beneficiary designations on pensions, life insurance policies, and reversing joint account designations and joint tenancy and ownership of land;
  • Invalidate any undue influence on assets transferred to the fraudster or improvident changes to the victim’s Will.

In addition to reversing transactions and recovering funds that have been wrongfully taken, courts are prepared to order that the abusers pay punitive damages to the victim and special costs.

NEXT STEPS

If you have concerns about how a loved one’s finances are being treated or their safety, call our Power of Attorney Elder Abuse Law lawyers today toll free across BC at 1 877 602 9900 or contact one of our offices today.