August 20, 2013
Katie Roe, Clinical Legal Fellow and Vincent Wiraatmadja, 3L, with the McGeorge Elder and Health Law Clinic presented at the Sacramento Sons in Retirement (SIR) monthly luncheon on Aug. 14, 2013. More than 75 seniors attended the presentation on the McGeorge Legal Clinics and elder financial abuse. Attendees learned about the Clinic's legal services and how to prevent themselves and others from being victims of financial abuse. Ms. Roe and Mr. Wiraatmadja shared with the group examples of elder financial abuse and exploitation cases the Clinic has handled over the past year.
In one case this summer, an 89-year old woman was the victim of door-to-door home improvement fraud. After an unsolicited three-hour visit by a salesman in her home, the senior was so desperate to get the man out of her home that she signed the contract for a $17,000 walk-in bathtub and paid a $1,000 deposit. Jacob Smith, 3L, advocated on behalf of the senior resulting in the cancellation of the contract and refund of her deposit.
Unfortunately, not every case of financial abuse is successful. Often times the money taken from the senior is long gone. For this reason, education is an important component of fighting elder abuse.
"Elder abuse is a difficult subject for many people to talk about. The SIRs presentation was a great forum to discuss this issue and I found the crowd to be very receptive of our message", reflected Mr. Wiraatmadja.
The Elder and Health Law Clinic provides free educational materials and community education presentations to Sacramento County seniors on financial safety and fraud issues.