Announcing Speaker Skip Humphrey and Special Town Hall Meeting

October 25, 2011

Elder Financial Protection Network & LA Financial Credit Union Present

Call to Action: Southern California
11th NATIONAL SUMMIT ON ELDER FINANCIAL EXPLOITATION
Wednesday November 2, 2011
The Center at Cathedral Plaza
555 West Temple Street, Los Angeles, California 90012-2707
8:30am – 3:30pm Registration

Hubert H. “Skip” Humphrey III, Director of the Office of Older Americans
Hubert H. “Skip” Humphrey III, Assistant Director, Office of Older Americans to speak at the luncheon with Mickey Rooney. Also, please join us for a Town Hall Meeting with Mr. Humphrey to be held from 2:45-3:30 following the luncheon. This your opportunity to raise your voice!

Mr. Humphrey served as attorney general of the state of Minnesota from 1983 to 1999 and was a state senator from 1973 to 1983. He was President of AARP Minnesota and a member of the Board of AARP National. Mr. Humphrey leads the Office of Older Americans as its Assistant Director at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). He is the son of the late Vice President, Hubert Humphrey.

In a statement on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau website, Humphrey referenced his father’s commitment to public service in talking about how he would run the new office.

“I grew up in a household where it wasn’t enough to just have a point of view,” he wrote. “My parents taught me that if I had a problem, I needed to do something about it. Here at the Office of Older Americans, we’ll be embracing this do-something attitude from day one.”

Money & Company, Tracking the Market and Economic Trends that Shape your Finances. Los Angeles Times | Business, October 19, 2011

Photo by AARP

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EFPN Featured in California Watch Report

July 13, 2011

Reports of suspected elder financial abuse on the rise

July 13, 2011 | Christina Jewett

Senior Woman in Wheelchair

A state law mandating that bank and credit union employees report suspected financial abuse of elders has resulted in a rising number of reports, including one that led investigators to a Sacramento-area attorney accused of squandering a 94-year-old man’s wealth while gambling, golfing and dining out.

The 2005 law, which is scheduled to fall off the books in 2013, requires bank employees to report suspicious financial activity to a local Adult Protective Services office.

Such reports filed with the county offices are on the rise, with 1,730 filed in the first four months of 2008 compared with 2,132 filed during the first four months of this year, according to data compiled by the state Department of Social Services. Since 2005, the number of confirmed cases of elder financial abuse went from 1,375 to 1,654, records for the first four months of each year show.

Jenefer Duane, founder of the San Francisco-based Elder Financial Protection Network, said the law has been critical to identifying abuse and is likely to be renewed by the Legislature this session. Sen. Joe Simitian, D-Palo Alto, carried the 2005 bill and the pending legislation to renew the law.

The 2005 law ultimately spurred a report from a fraud analyst at the Addison Avenue Federal Credit Union, which has a Roseville branch, setting off an investigation that led to the April arrest of a Roseville attorney who specializes in Medicare set-aside processes.

Delbert Joe Modlin is accused of two counts of theft from an elder, embezzlement by a trustee and unlawful taking of a vehicle. Deputy Attorney General Steve Muni of the Bureau of Medi-Cal Fraud & Elder Abuse said the investigation is ongoing.

Neither Modlin nor his attorney returned calls or an e-mail Monday or Tuesday. Modlin has not yet entered a plea in Placer County Superior Court, where the case is moving forward.

According to a declaration in support of Modlin’s arrest, he earned $40,800 in “excessive” attorney and trustee fees while handling the affairs of an elderly Auburn couple.

The declaration says the couple received medical care at Kaiser Permanente Roseville Medical Center, where Modlin’s wife was a patient discharge planner who referred the couple to a senior placement agent. That agent arranged for the couple to move to an elder care facility and suggested that the family make financial arrangements with Modlin, records say.

Kaiser Roseville said in a statement that it has cooperated fully with the attorney general’s investigation, is not a target of the probe and no longer employs Modlin’s wife, who was an on-call discharge planner.

Court records say that once Modlin began working as a trustee with the family, he charged high fees to move and re-invest the couple’s assets and sell their home. Court records show the home was sold against the owners’ wishes.

Modlin also arranged for his brother to sell the couple’s annuities, earning a commission of $15,000, half of which he paid back to Modlin as a “kickback,” court records say.

Modlin hired a son-in-law to move the couple’s belongings out of their Auburn home, filling three rollaway Dumpsters and keeping a china cabinet and dishes, the affidavit says. Modlin also parked the victim’s 1998 Oldsmobile at his home and tried but failed to get the vehicle put in his name.

Modlin also relied on a power-of-attorney document signed by the 97-year-old wife of the elderly man, who at the time believed that it was 1994 and that Lyndon Johnson was president.

An investigator for the attorney general’s office also reviewed bank accounts and found that Modlin routinely withdrew $500 to $7,000 of the man’s money at Thunder Valley Casino and also used his money for dining, golf outings and gas.

The older man already has testified about his experience, a technique employed in elder abuse cases and meant to document testimony of people who may not survive a lengthy legal process.

Duane, an elder financial abuse expert, said her organization’s website has a number of tip sheets for those concerned about elder financial abuse.


EFPN’s 8th Annual Call to Action conference and award ceremony

January 25, 2011

On Thursday, March 31, 2011, Elder Financial Protection Network (EFPN) will present Call to Action: San Francisco, our 8th annual national summit on elder financial abuse. Call to Action is EFPN’s signature annual event and offers innovative, cutting-edge conference sessions and an awards ceremony honoring leaders in the fight against elder financial abuse. Call to Action brings together hundreds of professionals representing financial services, law enforcement, social services, elder justice advocates, and the legal community to share best practices and express our collective determination to prevent elder financial abuse.

Philip Marshall and Jenefer Duane, Call to Action 2010“My grandmother, philanthropist and ‘Grand Dame’ of New York—Brooke Astor, would never want to be known as America’s most famous case of elder abuse. Nor did she, while in the throes of dementia, choose to be victimized—deprived, manipulated and robbed—all as part of a calculated ‘scheme to defraud’. Yet, the sad circumstances surrounding my grandmother have informed a timely and timeless cause that may be her greatest and most lasting legacy”.

“This year’s 8th Annual Call to Action Conference promises to be our most dynamic event ever! Join us for a series of interesting and lively conversations with some of the country’s most renowned elder financial abuse advocates. Joining us will be representatives from the financial, legal, law enforcement, social service and elder justice communities. You won’t want to miss this!” said Jenefer Duane Founder and CEO, EFPN.

Call to Action 2011 will run from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the UCSF Mission Bay Conference Center, a new location for the event, and will feature speakers on diverse aspects of elder financial abuse. The program will also include EFPN annual awards to leaders in the fight against elder financial abuse.

This year’s event will bring together experts and community advocates from across the country for a day-long learning experience on the growing crime of elder financial abuse. More than 300 people representing financial institutions, law enforcement, elder justice advocates and the legal community are expected to attend the event.

“In today’s economic climate, elders are at greater risk than ever of being targeted for fraud and financial abuse,” said Jenefer Duane, founder and CEO of EFPN.”

Initial sponsorship support is provided by CapitalSource Bank, Far East National Bank, First Bank, Star One Credit Union, Bank of Marin and the California Department of Consumer Affairs – Professional Fiduciary Division. Guest table and panel sponsorship opportunities are now available. EFPN will seek accreditation from the California State Bar to provide MCLE for legal professionals and a partner to provide CEU’s for social workers.

The Chair of the Honorary Committee is Mr. Philip C. Marshall, elder justice advocate and grandson of Brooke Astor and the co-chair is The Honorable Judge Kim R. Hubbard, Superior Court, Orange County, CA. Committee members include Robert Blancato, National Coordinator, Elder Justice Coalition; Elizabeth Loewy, Deputy District Attorney, New York County District Attorney’s Office, Paul R. Greenwood, Deputy District Attorney, San Diego County and D. Peter Gleichenhaus, Colonel, US Army (Retired).

Community co-sponsors include: National Committee for the Prevention of Elder Abuse California State Sheriff’s Association, Elder Justice Coalition and the Civic Research Institute.

EFPN is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to fighting elder financial abuse through innovative partnerships that build public awareness, drive community outreach, and provide professional training. Since 2000, EFPN has reached over 250,000 seniors, professionals and community members with our community outreach, public awareness and professional education programs.


Preaching the Message of Elder Protection to Senior Parishioners!

June 22, 2010

Thanks to the generous collaboration of Saint Dominic’s Church along with the sponsorship of Patelco Credit Union, Elder Financial Protection Network organized a dynamic free community education event featuring our award-winning “Be Wise: Avoid Scams, Fraud and Identity Theft” workshop for elders to learn how to protect themselves from becoming victims of financial exploitation.

The event took place on Wednesday, June 2, 2010 at Saint Dominic Church’s Parish Hall. Nearly 50 elders heard experts in the field present information on common frauds and scams and suggest strategies for how to avoid becoming a victim of identity theft and other forms of exploitation. The speakers also covered the different types of home care that is available for themselves and their loved ones stressing the need to plan ahead.

The workshop, moderated by Sharon Tallon of Patelco Federal Credit Union, featured speaker presentations by Helen Karr of the Office of San Francisco District Attorney,  Neal O’Farrell, Executive Director of the Identity Theft Council, and Bernadette Sweeney of Seniors at Home, a division of Jewish Family and Children’s  Services.

Thanks to all of the outreach to our senior communities about these important issues, seniors are learning about the importance of protecting themselves! This was the first time in all of EFPN’s workshops where three seniors gave up their raffle prize (a paper shredder) because they already had one! We took this as a good sign that the word is getting out about shredding unneeded documents and junk mail! Helping seniors to help each other was the best moment of this event!


Se Listo! EFPN Brings Education to San Francisco’s Spanish Speaking Elders!

June 22, 2010

On March 26, EFPN presented a “Be Wise: Avoid Frauds, Scams and Identity Theft” Seminar at the Mission Neighborhood Center in the Mission District. The Spanish-language presentation featured Marco Chavarin of the City and County of San Francisco, Helen Karr of the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office, Adela Coronado of the FDIC and Deborah Espinola of  California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform.  45 Spanish-speaking elders participated in the event, and everyone had a great time (and a free lunch!)

The event was generously sponsored by CITI. As the crime of elder financial abuse targets seniors from all socio-econmic backgrounds, EFPN is proud to equip  elders from these multilingual communities with the important message of how prevent elder financial abuse!

Buen trabajo EFPN and all our sponsors!


EFPN Documentary to Air on NBC

June 7, 2010

EFPN’s 30-minute documentary Be Wise, Be Aware: Prevent Elder Financial Abuse will air on NBC Bay Area on Sunday, June 13 at 3:00 p.m. in honor of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEEAD). The program was produced by EFPN and NBC and is sponsored by Bank of the West. To view the program on YouTube go to http://www.bewiseonline.org


6th Annual Call to Action event to spotlight prominent elder abuse case of Brooke Astor

March 11, 2010

Philip Marshall’s quest to protect his famous and wealthy grandmother Brooke Astor from devastating financial abuse put a national spotlight on a problem that a recent MetLife study, Broken Trust, found costs American seniors $2.6 billion annually.

Marshall will share his story in the keynote address at the Elder Financial Protection Network’s (EFPN) 6th annual Call to Action conference and awards ceremony on March 25, 2010 in San Francisco.

This year’s meeting comes at a time not only of increased attention to the problem of elder financial abuse, thanks to the media coverage of the Astor case, but also one of increased risk of financial abuse of seniors because of the current economic downturn. These factors combined with the progress being made toward passing a national Elder Justice Act, could make this year a watershed moment for the problem of elder financial abuse.

“In today’s economic climate, elders are at greater risk than ever of being targeted for fraud and financial abuse,” said Jenefer Duane, founder and CEO of EFPN. “The wealth of information shared by Mr. Marshall and our other great speakers at the Call to Action 2010 event will expand our insight and wisdom about how to prevent this growing problem.”

Marshall will join 10 other speakers at this year’s event, which will bring together experts and community advocates from across the country for a day-long learning experience on the growing crime of elder financial abuse. Several hundred representatives of financial institutions, law enforcement, elder justice advocates and the legal community are expected to attend the event.

“Raising awareness is key to confronting the problem of elder financial abuse,” said Mr. Marshall, a professor of historic preservation at Roger Williams University in Rhode Island, “and I hope the visibility my grandmother gave to the issue becomes her lasting legacy.”

Call to Action 2010 will run from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Holiday Inn – Golden Gateway, a new location for the event, and will feature speakers on diverse aspects of elder financial abuse. The program will also include EFPN annual awards to leaders in the fight against elder financial abuse.

EFPN is an award-winning non-profit organization that works to prevent financial abuse of elders and dependent adults through community education programs, public awareness initiatives, and professional training programs. For information, visit http://www.bewiseonline.org or call (415) 956-5556.