If you have an email account, you’ve most likely received a message that says for a small processing fee, a bank in Nigeria will help you collect the vast inheritance left to you by a distant relative that you never knew existed. Scams like this continue to bounce around because people occasionally fall for them. Often, the people that fall for these scams are elderly.
If you happen to be one of the people who are attempting to obtain money by running these kinds of scams targeting the elderly, you could face charges of financial elder abuse.
California’s Tough Elder Abuse Laws (PC 368)
California has some of the toughest laws in the country when it comes to financial abuse against the elderly. Under California Penal Code Section 368(d) and (e), elder abuse includes theft, embezzlement, or other financial fraud or identity theft committed against any person age 65 or older (or anyone aged 18 to 64 who is defined as a “dependent” adult).
Financial elder abuse is a law that casts a wide net, which means this law covers anything from simple petty theft to more complicated schemes designed to defraud an elderly person out of money or property.
Penalties for Financial Elder Abuse
Violations of PC 368(d) and (e) are punished severely. This crime could be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the circumstances of your case. If you are convicted of misdemeanor financial elder abuse, you face up to 364 days in county jail and a maximum fine of $1,000.
If you are convicted of felony financial elder abuse, you could be sentenced to two, three, or four years in state prison and a fine of up to $10,000. In addition, a felony conviction for financial elder abuse could be considered a “strike” under California’s “three strikes” law if the crime involved a burglary (PC 459).
Contact the Elder Abuse Attorney at Wallin & Klarich Today
Innocent people are often accused of committing elder abuse. That is why if you are charged with committing financial elder abuse, you should not hesitate to contact an experienced criminal defense attorney. At Wallin & Klarich, our team of experienced criminal attorneys has been successfully defending people accused of financial elder abuse for more than 35 years. We’ve helped thousands of clients in their time of legal need, and we can help you now.
With offices in Orange County, Riverside, San Bernardino, Los Angeles, San Diego, West Covina, Torrance, and Victorville, there is an experienced Wallin & Klarich elder abuse attorney available near you no matter where you work or live.
Contact our offices today at (877) 4-NO-JAIL or (877) 466-5245 for a free phone consultation. We will be there when you call.