Elder Abuse

questions & answers

Question: Nephew and ex sister in law have power of attorney of my brother who had heart attack and stroke. they put joes vehicles in nephews name, and arent paying bills like thdy should be, ie, mortgage is 5000 behind. Running up credit cards, and say theyre going to file bankruptcy on joe Isnt this against the law???

Answer: Individuals acting pursuant to a financial power of attorney/POA for a vulnerable adult are legally in a position of trust and confidence, and therefore in a "fiduciary relationship" with that vulnerable adult. If an interested person, such as a family member, suspects the POA agent of abusing his power of attorney, the interested person can contact Arizona's Adult Protective Services. Arizona enacted the Adult Protective Services Act (“APSA”) to protect vulnerable and incapacitated adults from neglect, abuse or exploitation, of both a physical and financial nature. APSA allows civil and criminal penalties against persons in a position of trust and confidence who financially exploit an incapacitated or vulnerable adult. Civil penalties can include actual damages and an amount up to two times the amount of actual damages. Actual damages might include the amount of monies and assets stolen or used without benefitting the vulnerable or incapacitated owner. Additionally, a court may order a person who has violated these statutes to forfeit all or a portion of their inheritance from the vulnerable adult.

QUESTIONS

  • Nephew and ex sister in law have power of attorney of my brother who had heart attack and stroke. they put joes vehicles in nephews name, and arent paying bills like thdy should be, ie, mortgage is 5000 behind. Running up credit cards, and say theyre going to file bankruptcy on joe Isnt this against the law???

STORIES

  • He told me that I could actually get all the money I needed by using my home as collateral. . .
  • He told me that I could actually get all the money I needed by using my home as collateral. . .
  • I just helped my mother, age 89, deal with her Medicare HMO. . .

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OTHER LEGAL RESOURCES

  • State Bar of Arizona
    www.azbar.org
  • Maricopa County Bar
    www.maricopabar.org
    Referral number 602-257-4434
  • Pima County Bar
    www.pimacountybar.org
    Referral number 520-623-4625
  • National Domestic Violence Hotline
    800-799-7233
  • Bankruptcy Court Self Help Center
    866-553-0893
  • Certified Legal Document Preparer Program
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