Saturday, July 12, 2008

Hearing for New Guardians

A hearing will be held to appoint new guardians for eight people after a Macomb County Probate Court judge pulled a Shelby Township company from cases in which it was providing guardianship services for the wards of the court.

Judge Pamela Gilbert O'Sullivan ruled that ADDMS Guardianship Services would be removed from eight cases because of "serious concerns" with the company's performance.

Full Article and Source:
Judge pulls wardship firm from 8 cases

More on the removal of ADDMS Guardianship Services:
Guardianship Agency Removed

Lawyer Suspended

Dennis M. Ryan was suspended from practicing law for nine months by the Board of Bar Overseers, citing misconduct.

The board said Ryan “demonstrated a lack of candor” during a disciplinary hearing and gave “deliberately false testimony.”

The misconduct included Ryan receiving $14,000 to probate a woman’s estate but did little work and was fired. The new lawyer found that Ryan had filed no probate accounting, had not applied for a federal tax identification number, had not filed personal and fiduciary tax returns, had not taken appropriate steps to shield retirement funds from potential tax consequences, and had kept large amounts of cash in non-interest-bearing accounts.

In another case, Ryan left his contingency fee in an account and later withdrawing money to pay his own taxes.

Full Article and Source:
Quincy lawyer suspended for nine months; misconduct cited

Friday, July 11, 2008

GAL Office Losing Attorneys

Utah's Office of Guardian ad Litem, which is charged with representing children in cases of alleged abuse or neglect in both juvenile and district court proceedings, is losing attorneys at a rapid pace.

Rick Smith, Director of the Office of Guardian ad Litem, said:

"His office has suffered a 20% attorney turnover rate over the last three years."

"Our biggest concern is the rate of pay for our attorneys. One of the items that we sought last year was an increase in funding so that we could pay our attorneys comparable to what other state attorneys are paid. That was not addressed. That continues to be a real problem for us."

"The standards set by the federal government, and by the American Bar Association and the National Association of Counsel for Children, says that attorneys representing children should not represent more than 100 children at a time. Our attorneys currently represent a little over 200 children per attorney, so our ratios are quite high."

Guardian ad Litem Office In Need of Funding

Women: The Movement and Elder Abuse

Before getting into the issues, please permit me to briefly identify myself. I'm a white male, age 74, who has spent his life working for social change in many different ways, often behind the scene. As early as 1955, I tried to break through Alabama's segregation laws, to no avail. When the Civil Rights Movement reached Nashville, TN, where I was living at the time, I was involved from the first planning meeting. Jim Lawson, who counseled students at Fisk and Maharry in Gandhi's nonviolent techniques, had been a former classmate of mine at Vanderbilt. I knew and corresponded with Martin Luther King, Jr. In the late 1960s, I was the first male employed by the women's movement in New York, helping its director organize their first national women's conference. In 1970, I helped organize and implement the First Earth Day in New York City. I'm now in my eleventh year as caregiver for my mother who is almost 98, and for the past decade I've been struggling on behalf of elderly rights. Much of my career has also been in the arts, and I have a new book coming out next spring titled Art and Spiritual Transformation.

The following concerns two issues of immense importance – the immediate future of women's movements, and the abuse of the elderly, especially elderly women;

My first major point is that we are poised at this time for another great movement forward on behalf of women's rights, organizations, and leadership roles. I've spent most of my life studying the laws and energies which govern all things, including our lives (I'm working on a 1,000 page book on the subject), and one of these is the Law of Cycles. History advances by cycles.

The Cyclic History of the Women's Movement

First Cycle: 1787-1798
It was during this period that Mary Wollstonecraft wrote the first great feminist manifesto, A Vindication of the Rights of Women, 1792. In France, upheaval on behalf of women was brought about by the revolutionary street orator, Théroigne de Méricourt and Madame de Stael and Madame Roland whose salons became centers of political activity and debate. A demand for recognition of women's "inalienable rights" were made to the Assembly by Olympe de Gouges and supported by the women's political organization Amis de la Vérité which argued for women's education, civil rights, and the right to divorce.

Second Cycle: 1845-1856
During this period the women's suffrage movement developed in the U.S. under the leaderships of Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Lucretia Mott, Lucy Stone and Susan B. Anthony. The first Women's Rights Convention was held at Seneca Falls, N.Y., in 1848, leading to regular women's rights meetings. Stanton formulated the first organized demands for women's suffrage, even as Harriet Taylor wrote The Enfranchisement of Women in England. Margaret Fuller wrote Women in the Nineteenth Century, the first major work of American feminism; Lucretia Mott published Discourse on Women; Amelia Bloomer began the first prominent woman's rights newspaper; and Sojourner Truth delivered her famous "Ain't I a Woman?" speech before a women's convention in Akron, Ohio.

Third Cycle: 1896-1907
Women's rights movement now becomes more militant and international. There was the delivery to the British parliament in 1902 of 37,000 signatures demanding women's right to vote. The Women's Social and Political Union in England was founded in 1903 under the leadership of Emmeline Parkhurst. 1904 saw the founding of the International Woman Suffrage Alliance and the political reorganization of the National American Woman's Suffrage Association by Carrie Chapman Catt in 1905. In 1906 the term "suffragette" was first used. Also in 1906 Emma Goldman co-founded the anarchist monthly Mother Earth. Galvanized by Nannie Helen Burroughs speech "How the Sisters are Hindered from Helping" to the National Baptist Convention, the largest African-American women's organization, Women's Convention was founded. Charlotte Perkins Gilman wrote Women and Economics in 1989, calling for economic and social freedom for women. Marie Curie in France was the first woman to receive the Nobel Prize in 1903 and in London around 1905 Virginia Woolf and the Bloomsbury Group emerged, casting off the restraints of Victorian social behavior. In 1906, Susan B. Anthony died, having proclaimed in her final public speech, "Failure is impossible."

Fourth Cycle: 1960-1972
The most recent major cycle of advancement for women's rights and influence took place in the era beginning in 1960. Betty Friedman wrote her landmark work The Feminine Mystique in 1963. NOW was founded in 1966, the New York Radical Women and Redstockings in 1968-69, and the Women's Action Alliance in 1971. Many writers and activists, such as Doris Lessing, Kate Millett, Germaine Greer and Gloria Steinem, emerged during this period. Advances in Civil Rights also take place in the same time cycles.

The Desperate Plight of Elderly Women
This brings me now to the second and perhaps most important reason for my writing. You may know that Chief Justice Rehnquist wrote an opinion a couple decades ago in which he stated that the U.S. Supreme Court would not extend civil rights protections to the elderly or the handicapped – that is, to some of America's most vulnerable citizens! It doesn't take a genius to figure what that was about.

Every year in the U.S. more than 8,000,000 elderly citizens are stripped of most or all of their property, investments, and life's savings and, in many cases, even of their Social Security. In many instances greedy family members and scam artists are behind these thefts, but in the vast majority of cases probate judges, attorney, and court-appointed guardians and conservators are the thieves.

I've fought a nine year battle on behalf of my mother, who was stripped of every cent my parents spent fifty years saving up for their old age – and this less than a month after dad's death. I had a small but very successful international business which I could easily operate from home, enabling me to take care of my parents and run my business at the same time. When the court tried to take mother from my care and place her in an institution where, according to her primary care physician, she probably would not have lived more than six months, I successfully blocked the court's efforts. In response, my business was seized and shut down, my livelihood destroyed and my financial assets seized – a major violation of civil RICO law. The probate judge said to me, "You can have your business back when you give me physical custody of your mother." "That will be never," I replied. So I lost everything as well. Mother and I have lived almost entirely on Social Security since the beginning of 2000, while judges and attorney have pretty much picked her estate dry. Mother was never allowed access to an attorney or a single one of her legal rights, nor was I.

In nine years we've never been granted a due process hearing in any court of law, never been allowed to present any evidence or challenge the illegal actions against us. We were even locked out of our own home for twenty-seven months with nothing. In all, I fought off six attempts to take mother from my care. I don't need to go through our story. I'm writing a book about it.

According to the data I've been able to dig up, it appears that close to 90% of the elderly who have their property and assets seized die prematurely as a direct result. That means that greed is killing off more senior citizens in the U.S. each year that all the Jews exterminated by the Nazis in the whole of World War II. I'm appalled at the fact that the conscience of the American people is not outraged. But part of the problem is that the elderly, unlike those who fought in the Civil Rights and Women's Movements, are no longer able to march and fight for themselves. They need US to do it for them!

I'm in my eleventh year as full time care provider for my mother and late father, but the vast majority of family caregivers are women. If there are both sons and daughters in a family, the task of caring for elderly parents typically falls on daughters. Furthermore, when the assets of the elderly are illegally or otherwise seized, this only increases the financial burdens on those who must care for them, and it prevents parents who want to pass something along to their children from being able to do so. Everyone loses except the thieves. Sometimes, for one reason or another, children can't or don't take care of their parents. But if we choose not to care for those who gave us life and raised us, the message we're sending to our own children is, "When I'm old, just forget about me." In many ancient and Eastern societies the elderly remain as part of the family. This is another change that we must make in our society – find better ways to care for our parents instead of leaving it up to the courts.

The elderly can rarely protect themselves, rarely know how to deal with corrupt judges, attorneys, scam artists, or greedy relatives. They cannot march on Washington in huge public demonstrations, and it is imperative that some larger, established, powerful organization such as the National Organization for Women take up this issue and realize that it is in the best interest of all women, young and old, to make the protection of the elderly a major cause within the women's movement. Younger women will someday in the position of these elderly women and just as vulnerable to exploitation if nothing is done.

Based on the statistic I've been studying, given the current rate of financial exploitation of the elderly by society, and assuming that the average woman lives to age 80, there is a one-in-three chance that she will become a victim of financial rape in her final years! Moreover, whereas the elderly are not protected under civil rights laws, elderly women would come under the protection of women's civil rights, which means an organization would be well positioned to help protect these rights.

I'm not a particular religious person in the conventional sense, but I am a highly ethical and deeply spiritual person who has devoted a lifetime to helping others and trying to do my part to create a better world for future generations. From that perspective, I appeal with all my heart and soul to take up the cause of the elderly, especially elderly women. As a man, I would not resume to suggest how best to do this. In my own mind I find myself playing off the Boston Women's Health Collective 1969 book, Our Bodies, Ourselves, with something like: Our Mothers, Ourselves.

With the incoming energies to drive forward the next phase of the women's movement, adding such a cause would prove both timely and successful. As a male, I have nothing to gain from this. It is for my beloved mother and her suffering and all women and mothers everywhere that I want to see the women's movement expanded to include their welfare, rights and future.

Shame on America if we sacrifice any more elderly generations to the greedy and powerful. We need the compassion women bring to all causes in solving this problem. The financial exploitation of an elderly woman who cannot protect herself is as surely rape as any physical rape and almost always leads to an early death. Please take up their cause, I beg you. Only when we all work together will the "better world" we all hope for come into manifestation.


Finley Eversole, Ph.D.

1300 Beacon Pky E., # 305

Birmingham, AL 35209

(205) 871-6013


Thursday, July 10, 2008

Guardianship Agency Removed

Macomb Probate Judge Pamela Gilbert-O'Sullivan has removed ADDMS Guardianship Services as guardian from all eight cases on her files, citing "abuse of power" and "serious concerns" about how the agency handled the estates of wards of the court.

An attorney appointed to review ADDMS cited instances in which the company failed to account for financial transactions and falsely reported that the clients had been visited.

ADDMS was the subject of an audit by an Auburn Hills-based forensic auditor, The Whall Group, which also found the agency improperly handled cases.

Mt. Clemens: Judge pulls agency's cases

From a June 11, 2008 Order:

"The damage that has occurred to the vulnerable Macomb County citizens needing guardian and conservator services to protect them and their property must cease and those responsible must be held accountable. With the removal of Judge George as chief judge and the appointment of Judge Sanborn, acting Chief Judge Sanborn can focus on protecting the most vulnerable citizens of Macomb County needing guardians and conservators, and focus on getting to the truth about the administration of the Macomb County Probate Court and how the damage occurred."

Appointment of Chief Judge of the Macomb County Probate Court

See also:
Macomb County Probate

Probate Judge Removed


What do you say about an author who pens his life story anonymously? Something to hide? You bet! But he's not hiding anything here, anything other than his face. This is a true story. A one-of-a-kind tell-all confessional. A memoir written by, perhaps, the worst lawyer ever admitted to a State Bar!

The author begins his tale by describing a single lawsuit over a fall from a horse in which he was never able to bring himself to file the papers necessary to go to court. He goes on from there to recount in affecting detail his grossly incompetent law practice, his systematic deceit of clients, the day-trading habit that he embezzled money from clients in order to support, and his eventual disbarment.

A cautionary tale about procrastination, or as a warning to take extreme care when picking out your next lawyer.

Fallen: Confessions of a Disbarred Lawyer
A memoir of recklessness and deceit . . .

Petition to Reopen Estate

An attorney has petitioned the probate court of Covington County on behalf of five first cousins of the late Cary Douglas Piper to reopen his estate. It is Piper's estate from which Probate Judge Sherrie R. Phillips is accused of taking $1.8 million.

Phillips issued a final decree in Piper's estate on Jan. 4, 2008, according to probate files.

In June, Phillips was indicted by a Covington County Grand Jury and charged with:

* First-degree theft of a check for $1.8 million or any proceeds of the check,
* First-degree theft by deception, by knowingly obtaining unauthorized control of a check for $1.8 million or any proceeds of the check,
* Intentionally using her official position for unlawful personal gain for herself or a family member, of a check for $1.8 million or any proceeds of the check,
* First-degree theft of a check for $3,650 or any proceeds of the check,
* First-degree theft by deception, by knowingly obtaining unauthorized control of a check for $3,650 or any proceeds of the check,
* Intentionally using her official position for unlawful personal gain for herself or a family member, of a check for $3,650 or any proceeds of the check.

Attorney Gilbert M. Sullivan Jr. filed the petition to reopen Piper's estate, asking that the decree of final settlement be declared null.

Full Article and Source:
Piper estate could be reopened

See also:
Judge Arrested on Ethics Charges

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

In Memoriam - Esther Johnson

When Esther Johnson became vulnerable, her wishes and needs were denied, her estate plundered, and her dignity neglected. Even though she named her son Taylor as her DPoA and even specified he would be her guardian if needed, she didn’t get what she wanted. Instead, Esther’s daughter was named guardian. She confined Esther to her bedroom, denied her visitors, and only allowed Taylor to see their Mother one hour per week and those supervised visits cost Taylor over $100 each.No one was allowed to mention Taylor’s name or answer Esther when she asked about him.

The 3 1/2 year nightmare, which Esther Johnson suffered and which directly caused her death, revolves around the Probate Court structure in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and the courts absolute refusal to abide by the existing protective laws for the elderly. Esther Johnson suffered many abuses and torture before her homicide on December 30, 1998.

As a society, we can and must protect the human, civil and constitutional rights of seniors. Every person deserves to live a full life with dignity. Every person must be guaranteed that their wishes will be carried out, assets protected and dignity preserved.

Judge Disbarred for Misconduct

The Supreme Court of Ohio has disbarred Judge Jeffrey Hoskins for engaging in a pattern of professional misconduct “incompatible with his duties as a judge and a lawyer.”

In the decision, the Court unanimously affirmed the disciplinary board’s findings that Hoskins violated multiple provisions of the Code of Judicial Conduct while serving on the bench...

With regard to the offenses alleged during his years in private practice, the Court adopted the board’s findings that Hoskins engaged in a pattern of misconduct involving fraud, deceit, dishonesty or misrepresentation and committed other ethical offenses by repeatedly making improper and unauthorized withdrawals of money for his own use from the estates of several relatives over whose assets he exercised fiduciary control as executor or administrator.

The board also found that Hoskins failed to timely disburse estate assets to the rightful beneficiaries, failed to keep required records accounting for his withdrawals and disbursements from the estates, charged excessive legal fees, and filed incomplete, inaccurate and misleading reports with the probate court that concealed his improper diversion of funds from the estates to his own use.

The Court’s 7-0 per curiam decision permanently revokes Hoskins’ license as an attorney and bars him for life from the practice of law in Ohio.

Full Article and Source:
First Ohio Judge In Decades Disbarred For Misconduct

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

The Shakedown

The probate racket by design allows for the "shakedown" to begin.

The shakedown of the family and the Ward. The lawyers, professional guardians and family members with criminal minds, learn and know how to "work" the probate system, the judge. Give the courts what they need to hear - you know, the "buzz words", that will ensure the court battle begins with the "pro's" in the winning position.

All the pros have to do to get their way, to get appointed to the new guardianship or conservatorship case, is to suggest to the court suspicions or trumped up charges, even using fabricated information that the elder, the Ward, has been taken advantage of, abused, neglected or exploited etc.

We know how this is done and we are learning more of the dirty tricks and secrets. The pattern of their success is very clear; it's a con job, a national scam.

The court controls the outcome. To the probate racket, it's all about the $$$ - a money game - how to seize, redirect all property and assets from the ward and his or her intended heirs to their loop of crooks. All in the loop are rewarded, compensated in some manner for their role in their new guardianship/conservatorship case. Lawyers are compensated further by any opposition as they begin their shakedown of the opposing party.

Many times judges will use their bench as if it were a stage. Scripted to get the record right, so it looks like the judge is doing his/her job. It looks good for the record, but the players know they are free to proceed as they please.

Of course, if the record isn't going the way of the script, the probate racket can remedy that problem. They have their game book ready with a list of excuses why there is no record or transcript. All of this with no consequences and so far it works.

In the end, when the Ward is dying or has passed and/or all of the Ward's money is gone, the guardians and conservators are in position, back in rotation for their next case. And, another Ward and family begins the cycle. This will continue and they have their eyes on us.

Written by a NASGA member

About Being Old

Elderly father writes to son, about being old.
Music by Libera.

You Tube Video

Monday, July 7, 2008

The Oppaga Report - Protecting the Elderly

The Oppaga Report-Protecting the Elderly was written by Joe Roubicek, author of FINANCIAL ABUSE OF THE ELDERLY; A Detective's Case Files Of Exploitation Crimes

From the author:
Financial exploitation is misunderstood, devastating and far more prevalent than many realize. Consider the fact that victimization also awaits the baby boomers, the next generation that should rightfully be concerned about themselves as well as their elders. I wrote my book of exploitation crimes to increase awareness of both generations and promote the concept that “the best offense is a good defense”.... preparation before becoming disabled by the aging process is the key to successfully protecting yourself or loved ones. This download was written to point out that you cannot depend on the government to protect you in your old age.

Free Download:
The Oppaga Report - Protecting the Elderly

See also:

The Immoralities of Jennifer Smith

Guardian Abuse: Keeping It In The Family

Advocate for the Elderly

Financial Abuse of the Elderly

The 40/70 Rule

The "40-70 Rule" is based on original research conducted by Home Instead Senior Care, which discovered that nearly one-third of adults in the U.S. have a major communication obstacle with their parents that stems from continuation of the parent-child role. The fact that many seniors may still be dealing with their grown sons or daughters as if they're children rather than adults makes these conversations particularly difficult.

The "40-70 Rule" is designed to help adult children and their aging parents deal with those sensitive topics that often make conversations difficult. The idea is that if you're 40, or your parents are 70, it's time to start talking - at least about certain senior topics.

More Information:
Home Instead - 40/70 Rule

40/70 PDF Booklet

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Voluntary Suspension

Attorney Richard Hannan Jr. voluntarily agreed to have his license to practice law suspended indefinitely at a civil hearing at New Haven Superior Court.

Hannan is accused of stealing more than $150,000 from an elderly client who had signed over power of attorney to him following a stroke in May 2006. Hannan has admitted using the money to pay personal bills and gambling debts.

A separate criminal case is proceeding against Hannan; he would be disbarred if he is convicted of charges of first-degree larceny for the misuse of client funds.

Full Article and Source:
Attorney agrees to license suspension

See also:
Lawyer Pleads No Contest

"Don't Starve Woman"

Members of the Delaware House of Representatives have approved a resolution declaring:

It is against the public policy of this state for food and water to be withheld from a 24-year-old woman left with brain injuries following a drug overdose.

Judie Brown of the American Life League has issued a call to those who are concerned about such cases to help. She wrote:

"The governor of Delaware, Ruth Ann Minner, is being asked by pro-life Americans across this nation to intervene in this case in order to save Lauren from what many fear is an imminent court order dictating that Lauren be starved and dehydrated to death. I am asking you to be one of those who communicates your passionate belief that Lauren's life is sacred and deserves to be protected from those who would order her death. The governor's e-mail address is"

Full Article and Source:
Lawmakers' verdict: 'Don't starve woman - It is against the public policy of this state for nutrition to be involuntarily removed'

See also:
Life for Lauren

The video of Lauren Marie Richardson that was previously posted by members of her family that want to save her life: