According to the Napa County District Attorney’s Office the number of elder abuse cases has tripled in the past decade. This is due to the better awareness of the public, but there are still even more cases that are not reported. The Attorney stated at a symposium last week there is still an extreme amount of elder abuse cases that go unreported Lieberstein stated. There are over 80 prosecutors, investigators and victims’ advocates throughout California that gathered to discuss combating elder care abuse in their jurisdictions at the symposium that was organized by the California District Attorneys Association.
It was partially funded by a grant from the Archstone Foundation, which is a Long Beach nonprofit organization. The symposium discussions focused on elder abuse trends, recognizing financial scams and how to increase the public’s awareness of caregiver’s negligence. Lieberstien’s office prosecutes approximately 25 elder abuse cases each year and he discussed Napa County’s new plans for the prevention of elder abuse. Beginning in July 2011 the new initiatives include caregivers applying for permits, which is the only rule like this in the state. Between the district attorney’s office and the counsel the public is being educated about the permit requirements, which Lieberstein state is a step in the right direction to protect the elderly.
The requirement to apply and hold a permit is believed by officials keep criminals out of elder care. Caregivers and nurses that work for either a private or public agency are exempt, since they have already undergone a background check. People applying for a permit that does not pass the background check will be allowed to receive a limited permit that will allow them to care for one person. The elder person they care for will be made aware of the failure to pass the background check and any criminal convictions.
The permit which will cost an estimated fee of $110 requires a background check and will be necessary for family members that are caregivers in exchange for free rent or other compensation. The renewal fee will be $99 the first year and $87 every year after and is issued by the Napa County Assessor’s Office. The new requirement is expected to cost approximately $50,000 per year, according to Lieberstein’s office. The Area Agency on Aging Napa-Solano, which is a nonprofit agency to help seniors, will coordinate the application process. Partial payment or the caregiver coordination payment will come from grant money and applicant fees, according to Lieberstein.
According to officials Napa County is the only county to require permits for caregivers nationwide. Contra Costa County Special Deputy District Attorney Jack Waddell, stated he believes Lieberstein’s presentation at the symposium to be a good idea. We hope you have enjoyed this message of public importance from the Los Angeles elder abuse attorney at:
Ehline Law Firm PC
11500 W. Olympic Blvd., Suite 400