The concept of someone taking advantage of an elderly person to gain access to their financial resources is despicable. While there are thousands of instances each year of phone scammers, online con artists and other long-distance scams, there are also cases of people that the elderly person knows manipulating them to get access to their money. If you or an elderly loved one live in Concord, California, you should educate yourself on what undue influence is and why it is so dangerous.
What is undue influence?
According to the California State Law, undue influence is “excessive persuasion that causes another person to act or refrain from acting by overcoming that person’s free will and results in inequity.” Essentially, undue influence comes into play when one person refuses to take no for an answer and continues to push someone into doing what they want them to do instead of allowing them to act on their own free will.
What makes influence “undue?
We are all influenced by people around us, and obviously the people closest to us have more influence than a casual acquaintance. That is why elderly people are so apt to fall prey to undue influence, especially by a relative or close friend. Undue influence becomes an issue when this trusted individual coerces your elderly loved one to do something that endangers their own financial status while benefiting the perpetrator.
California’s criteria for undue influence
Under California State Law, the following criteria come into consideration when determining whether or not someone was the victim of undue influence:
- Factors that gave the influencer power over the victim
- The vulnerability of the victim
- The equity of the result (economic impact on the victim)
- The tactics used by the influencer
If you or someone you know has suffered financial loss through undue influence, you should immediately contact an attorney. This attorney could review the information surrounding the case and help you determine if elder law has been violated.