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Nov-19-2007 07:12printcomments

Caregiver Exploitation: A Cautionary True Tale

This cautionary tale is shared as a warning for all of us to heed.

Elder abuse
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(SALEM, Ore.) - From evil deeds in life, one draws lessons. Without mentioning names, I need to share with readers an apparent case of Caregiver Exploitation that occurred to a dear friend. The older person in question was both seriously depressed and had dementia, according to various medical records. A family member stepped in to serve as caretaker for this woman of nearly 90. The will called for the estate to be equally split between her two children.

The outcome was that the caregiver somehow maneuvered to set up a joint account that would, in effect, not become part of the estate.

Much of this was kept secret until she died, and the actual death certificate stated cause as "Complications of Advanced Dementia".

Ironically, the caregiver shielded the older person from all witnesses who were is a position to potentially contradict. Thus, with no hard "medical proof", dementia fell by the wayside.

This cautionary tale is shared as a warning for all of us to heed. Unless the courts reverse the so-called "joint account", most of this lady's money will bypass the purpose of her will.

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Neal Feldman November 19, 2007 7:39 am (Pacific time)

Lots if predators with no shame out there. If you have a friend or relative who might be taken advantage of talk to them, offer to help etc and if a caregiver gives you a 'bad vibe' have law enorcemeent investigate. Sad but necessary. Ah well...

Anonymous November 19, 2007 7:30 am (Pacific time)

To all: From own personal-family experience, can verify this ongoing danger. NOT always by selfish action of anyone, but simply from the very human outcomes of poor choice made in very difficult circumstances by aging person themselves. Make sure you have very good professional advice, really protecting you vs sudden mind change by aging person. Power-of-attorney can be set aside by such action, to full detriment of all concerned.

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