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City Commissioner Under Investigation for Financial Abuse of Elderly Woman


Financial abuse is the most common form of elder abuse, even more common than emotional or physical abuse.  Financial abuse occurs when the abuser coerces the victim into making transactions he or she does not want to make, uses lies or emotional manipulation to get the victim to spend money on the abuser or in the ways that the abuser wants, or persuades the victim to give him or her access to the victim’s bank accounts and then uses the victim’s money for transactions that the victim does not know about or does not consent to.  Almost anyone in an elderly person’s life can commit financial abuse, so legal regulators and the families of seniors are on their guard against elder abuse.  Nursing home administrators get suspicious if staff members receive gifts from residents, and families get suspicious if an elderly person quickly establishes a close friendship with someone that he or she recently met on the Internet.  A city official is now under investigation for pretending to help an elderly woman but using the victim’s money to enrich herself.  To find more about protecting yourself and your elderly relatives from financial abuse, contact a Dade City elder law attorney.

City Official Allegedly Defrauded Nonagenarian Out of $100,000

Regina Hill is the Orlando City Commissioner, and in 2021, when residents told her about a neighbor of theirs who was living in poor conditions, Hill decided to intervene.  The woman, who was 93 years old, lived alone in a single-family home, and her house was badly in need of repair.  Hill visited the woman at her home and told her that she would arrange for the repairs to the house.  She gave the woman a paper to sign so that the repair process could begin.  The woman did not really understand what the paper was, but she signed.

The paper that Hill asked the victim to sign was a power of attorney (POA), which gave Hill access to the woman’s bank account and the authority to make transactions from it.  Over the next several months, instead of using the victim’s bank account to repair and renovate the victim’s house, Hill applied for a mortgage loan for another house, which Hill herself moved into.  She also used the money to travel to Miami during the New Year’s holiday and to get cosmetic surgery.  Employees working for Hill became suspicious and eventually discovered the fraud, at which time they notified the victim and the police.  The victim said that, if she had known what the paper Hill gave her was, she would not have signed it.

One needs to be very cautious in determining who should become the their agent for a power of attorney. A tool to assist can easily become a tool to defraud.

Contact a Florida Elder Law Attorney About Protecting Seniors From Financial Abuse

An elder law attorney can help you protect yourself from fraud and other forms of financial abuse.  Contact The Law Office of Laurie R. Chane in Dade City, Florida to discuss your estate plan.



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