Americans are living longer than they did decades ago. Unfortunately, people can become more vulnerable as they age, making them an easy target for abuse. One of the most common forms, especially in California, is financial abuse. However, law enforcement in some parts of the state have been hesitant about tackling these crimes. This reluctance may be a concern for some residents as news reports state allegations of elder financial abuse in Orange County have tripled since 2005.

This can often leave families feeling frustrated and scared for their elderly loved ones as their potential for being taken advantage of may be higher.

Why so many cases remain untouched

Prosecutors go after various crimes aimed at older adults. But if the case involves financial mistreatment by a caregiver, a district attorney may not show interest in pursuing action. This is because many DAs may not consider financial abuse to be an offense they deal with. While taking money or property from an older adult is a offense, there are many instances where law enforcement may only send victims to civil court.

Financial abuse can leave its victims in ruin

When an elderly loved one is subject to financial abuse, the impacts can be far reaching. In some cases, the abuser may have spent all of the older adult’s money or obtained the rights to their property. If you have an elderly loved one who has become a victim of financial abuse, an experienced estate law attorney can assist in getting their assets and finances back in order.