Exploitation of Elderly/Disabled Persons
Tampa Criminal Defense Lawyers
There are various civil penalties for the abuse, neglect, or exploitation of an elderly or disabled person, and if you live in Florida, there could be criminal penalties as well. To be sure, the State of Florida criminal code specifically names the crime of “exploitation of an elderly person or disabled person.” If you are facing criminal charges for this offense in Tampa or the surrounding areas of Hillsborough County, Florida, before speaking with law enforcement, it is to your benefit to contact our experienced Tampa criminal law attorneys at All Family Law Group, P.A. Our attorneys have experience since 1997 and they are counsel you can count on throughout the process. Furthermore, we offer an initial free consultation to discuss the options which are available to you.
What Is Exploitation of the Elderly or Disabled in Florida?
The exploitation of an elderly or disabled person in Florida is a very serious crime. Under Florida Statute Section 825.103, exploitation of an elderly or disabled person is defined as:
- Knowingly using or obtaining, or intending and attempting to obtain and use, such person’s funds or assets with the intent of depriving the person or the funds/assets; or
- Breaching the fiduciary duty owed to the person when the breach results in the sale, transfer, or appropriation of asset/property that is unauthorized.
In the first definition in which a person commits a crime of exploitation by using or obtaining an elderly or disabled person’s funds or assets, the person must:
- Have a relationship of trust with the elderly or disabled person; or
- Have a business relationship with the elderly or disabled person; or
- Reasonably know that the elderly or disabled person lacks the ability to consent (to the financial matter).
Penalties Under Florida Law
The manner in which the crime of exploitation of an elderly or disabled person is classified in Florida depends on the amount of money involved. Florida law dictates the following penalties which are designated by the amount of money taken without consent.
- Less than $10,000, the crime is classified as a third degree felony;
- At least $10,000, but less than $50,000, the crime is classified as a second degree felony; and
- At least $50,000 or more, the crime is classified as a felony of the first degree.
Felony charges are very serious in Florida. To be sure, Florida Code 775.082 explains that a first-degree felony could be penalized by up to 30 years in prison. A second degree felony is punishable by a prison sentence of up to 15 years, and a felony of the third degree is punishable by up to five years in prison. Prison in itself is bad enough, but a criminal charge could also include fees that are charged, potential probationary periods, a requirement to pay restitution, a community service or education requirement and more. Of course, a felony charge will remain on your criminal record for years to come–potentially for the remainder of your life–and could affect housing, employment, education, and more.
Contact Our Criminal Defense Law Firm Now
If you are facing criminal charges for the exploitation of a disabled or elderly person, you need an experienced and knowledgeable Tampa criminal defense attorney on your side. We have decades’ worth of experience and success in litigation as well as plea deals when to your benefit. Call us today at 813-672-1900 or email us to schedule a free consultation to discuss the circumstances surrounding your case. We will respond to you immediately.
If you have an emergency situation and you need to call us after hours then please call (813) 551-3903 for assistance. We are happy to help!