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An Alabama Probate Judge Gave My Mother a Life Sentence

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By Nancy Gregory-McLendon (formerly Nancy Scott)
June 15, 2021 – World Elder Abuse Awareness Day

I am definitely my mother’s daughter. We shared a profession (retired school teachers), a love of reading, writing, and travel. My mother was a true fighter; you don’t live to be 103 years old without having a will to live.

My mom took care of me when I was young and, as the years passed, our roles shifted as I became her caregiver. For 30 years, my mom trusted me to act as her Power of Attorney for financial and medical matters. We thought we had prepared for the inevitable – I would be responsible for managing her affairs when the time came – but we were about to learn otherwise.


What I didn’t know, (and who would know this ahead of time?) was the guardian and conservatorship arena is no place for the uninformed. The phrase, “If you are the smartest person in the room, you’re in the wrong room” couldn’t be more wrong when it comes to guardianships.

In America, a judge can determine a person to be incapacitated and take away their civil liberties with shockingly little evidence. A judge can also ignore a power of attorney or health care directive and appoint a person of their choosing instead. A guardian can liquidate property and belongings and take percentage of the proceeds as a commission. The guardian can also isolate their ward (victim) from friends and family.

My mom and I did not seek assistance from the Jefferson County Probate Court, but that didn’t stop them from taking charge of her life. More

Guardianship Abuse Playbook – Retaliation Against Those Who Dare to Speak Up

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By Terri LaPoint, Real News Spark
May 20, 2021

Imagine a situation in which someone you love is abducted. You may or may not know where they are, but you are powerless to free them. The captor takes their money by getting into their bank account and investments, changing insurance policies and trusts to the benefit of the captor. The captor drugs the loved one into oblivion and forbids them to contact friends or family members.

If a masked thug did all this, law enforcement would jump into action, and the person reporting such a crime might even be hailed as a hero.

However, if the perpetrator of such actions does so by manipulating the probate or civil court system, it is business as usual. No one bats an eye if the victim is declared by the court to be an “incapacitated person” in need of a guardian, whether the allegation is true or not.

Worse, there is often swift retaliation against anyone speaking up for these hidden victims of guardianship abuse. Such bullying tactics are so common that they are considered part of the standard “playbook” used by the perpetrators of guardianship exploitation through local probate courts.

Occasionally, stories of this abuse of power make it into mainstream media, such as that of Golden Flake heiress Joann Bashinsky and the film from Netflix, “I Care A Lot”. More often, stories appear in alternative media and blogs.

The prevalent thinking is that, indeed, this case is an anomaly. Few realize how commonly it occurs. And few recognize the high cost at which these stories ever see the light of day.

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TAKE OUR COVID-19 GUARDIANSHIP/NURSING HOME SURVEY!

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National Association to STOP Guardian Abuse
Nonprofit Organization
National Association to STOP Guardian Abuse

May 21

TAKE OUR COVID-19 GUARDIANSHIP/NURSING HOME SURVEY!: The Coronavirus Pandemic has laid bare a great many injustices in the United States. None more so than the tragedy that is taking place in America’s nursing homes, assisted living and long term care facilities.

If you already had a loved one in guardianship/conservatorship, or if a guardianship/conservatorship has been imposed by a probate/family court since January 2020 — or if you just have a loved one in long term care and are concerned for their safety, we want to hear from you!

https://docs.google.com/…/1FAIpQLSd6M4m9bWueUFTdln…/viewform

Judge: Guardian must return $3.8 million in Gadsden case

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By William Thornton
An Etowah County woman will end up returning more than $3.85 million to her mother’s estate as the result of a judge’s ruling.
The case, decided last month in Etowah County Circuit Court, dealt with the conservatory and custodial duties of a woman appointed co-conservator of her mother. Circuit Judge George Day Jr., ruled that the woman, who has not been charged with any crime, “breached her fiduciary duty to her mother’s Conservatorship estate, has failed to properly account for her actions and the funds and assets under her control, all of which has caused substantial damage” to the estate.
Additionally, the Court awarded a judgment against the daughter in relation to the custodial accounts for the incapacitated woman’s granddaughter, totaling $393,509.
Chris Hamer and Rebecca Wright of the Hamer Law Group represented the incapacitated woman’s conservator, an attorney who was appointed after the daughter resigned as conservator. The case has also generated a federal court action.
“This case represents the most egregious breach of fiduciary duties we’ve ever seen,” Hamer said in a statement. “Cases involving misappropriation and misuse of assets by family members appointed as fiduciaries are especially distressing for all involved.”
As a result of the decision, all money in the estate has been accounted for, attorneys said. According to court documents, the daughter of the incapacitated woman became conservator of her then-77-year-old mother in 2014. The woman, who died earlier this year, had 12 children.

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Guardianship Abuse: Testimony for the Senate Judiciary Committee

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NOTEAcross the nation is a web of predatory professional guardians who operate under the protection of corrupt probate court judges.  This system of predatory human trafficking involves kidnapping elderly victims who made the mistake of aging with assets.  The attached letter of testimony is to be presented to yet another Senate Committee, this time the Judiciary Committee, in the hopes that someone in D.C. will  move to bring this corruption and court sanctioned abuse to a halt.  Marti Oakley
___________________________________________

 

From: Linda Kincaid, MPH

20255 Glasgow Drive Saratoga, CA 95070
(408) 998-4642 nanosafety@gmail.com
September 28, 2011
Elizabeth Frosch
Legislative Correspondent
Office of Senator Amy Klobuchar
elizabeth_frosch@klobuchar.senate.gov

For submission to the Senate Judiciary Committee

Subcommittee on Administrative Oversight and the Courts

Hearing: “Protecting Seniors and Persons with Disabilities – An Examination of Court – Appointed Guardians”

Testimony on Elder Abuse of Carol Hahn in San Bernardino County, CA

My mother, Carol Hahn, is a victim of elder abuse. That abuse was initiated by Mindy Martin, who lied to investigating deputies and perjured herself in court documents to become my mother’s temporary conservator. More than a year later, Mindy Martin is still temporary conservator, and the abuse continues. My mother’s court appointed attorney, Mark Flory, has actively facilitated the abuse. Neither individual has been held accountable.

The existing “system” has utterly and completely failed to protect my mother or come to her aid. Rather, law enforcement concealed evidence and threatened family members. Adult Protective Services and the Long-Term Care Ombudsman will not return our phone calls. Programs and agencies are useless when there is no accountability. Laws are useless when they are not enforced. Additional laws and agencies will be equally useless unless a system of accountability is established. More

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