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Michigan Elder Fraud Statutes

In an effort to curb abuse of older citizens, the State of Michigan has statutes in place designed to punish those who exploit the elderly for their own financial gain. Michigan makes it possible for criminal charges to be brought against individuals and institutions that steal or exploit money from the elderly and/or vulnerable adults. Vulnerable adults include those with a disability or reduced competence who are not necessarily older individuals.

MCL 750.174 covers “embezzlement by agent, servant or employee, or trustee, bailee, or custodian,” and specifies that the court may order imprisonment if the victim is 60 years of age or older or otherwise defined as a vulnerable adult.

The Michigan penal code 750.145n outlines the following criteria and penalties for “vulnerable adult abuse:”

(1) A caregiver is guilty of vulnerable adult abuse in the first degree if the caregiver intentionally causes serious physical harm or serious mental harm to a vulnerable adult. Vulnerable adult abuse in the first degree is a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 15 years or a fine of not more than $10,000.00, or both.

(2) A caregiver or other person with authority over the vulnerable adult is guilty of vulnerable adult abuse in the second degree if the reckless act or reckless failure to act of the caregiver or another person with authority over the vulnerable adult causes serious physical harm or serious mental harm to a vulnerable adult. Vulnerable adult abuse in the second degree is a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 4 years or a fine of not more than $5,000.00, or both.

(3) A caregiver is guilty of vulnerable adult abuse in the third degree if the caregiver intentionally causes physical harm to a vulnerable adult. Vulnerable adult abuse in the third degree is a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment for not more than 2 years or a fine of not more than $2,500.00, or both.

(4) A caregiver or other person with authority over the vulnerable adult is guilty of vulnerable adult abuse in the fourth degree if the reckless act or reckless failure to act of the caregiver or other person with authority over a vulnerable adult causes physical harm to the vulnerable adult or the caregiver or another person with authority over the vulnerable adult knowingly or intentionally commits an act that under the circumstances poses an unreasonable risk of harm or injury to a vulnerable adult, regardless of whether physical harm results. Vulnerable adult abuse in the fourth degree is a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment for not more than 1 year or a fine of not more than $1,000.00, or both.

Where to turn when you or a loved one falls prey to elder abuse

While it can be devastating to discover that you or a loved one has been the victim of elder fraud, there are places you can turn for help. An attorney who is well-versed in financial and elder fraud issues may be able to help you recover lost money. The Silver Law Group has helped many people recover lost funds through litigation or arbitration, and we may be able to do the same for you.

Call us toll-free at 1-800-975-4345 or send us a message through our online form.

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