Saturday, June 26, 2010

Notes from Texas Public Hearing: Senate Committee on Jurisprudence

The Senate Committee on Jurisprudence, under the direction of Chairman Wentworth, met today in the Capitol Extension for invited and public testimony on interim charge 2.

Interim Charge 2: Study the guardianship program implemented by the Department of Aging and Disabilities and the Department of Adult Protective Services, including the efficiency and effectiveness of the program, the relationship between the two agencies, the appropriate rights for parents, and whether clients and their assets are adequately protected.

(2:12) Debby Valdez, an advocate for familial guardianship and a member of GRADE (Guardianship Reform Advocates for the Disabled and Elderly), was the first of nearly 3 hours of witnesses who gave emotional testimony on the abuses in the probate and guardianship system and were critical of DADS, Adult Protective Services, the private "profit-driven" guardianship system (in particular, GSI - Guardianship Services Inc.), Tarrant County Probate Judge Ferchill, and Denton County Probate Judge Windle. Other issues were ex parte discussions, attorney ad litems,revocation of parental rights, loss of familial interaction, revocation of familial guardianships, kickbacks, abuse, inappropriate relationships, sexual assault, the "stripping of civil rights," claims of "homicide," intentional overmedication, onerous appeal fees ($10,000 in Judge Ferchill's court), and theft of assets by ad litems.

(3:42) Sen. Harris voiced his anger at Commissioner Traylor and Assistant Commissioner Jessee over the lack of oversight with wards in private guardianship.

(3:47) Emotional public testimony continued.

(4:53) Steven Fields, court administrator for Tarrant County Probate Judge Ferchill, addressed the testimony regarding GSI, Judge Ferchill's relationship with GSI, ex parte hearings, the lack of notice given to family members with ex parte and revocation hearings, and specific allegations by family members. Mr. Fields stated "emergency situations" can require ex parte hearings, and family members can "create problems" for wards under the care of GSI. Mr. Fields said the $10,000 fee is a "security" for court costs in ad litem hearings. Sen. Harris expressed concern regarding overmedication, inadequate monitoring/oversight of wards, and Judge Ferchill.

Full Article and Source:
06/24/10 Senate Jurisprudence Committee on Jurisprudence

See Video of the Hearing

Hackers Hack Lawyer's Trust Account

It was a typical Monday at the office for Kimberly Graus, until she made a chilling discovery. Someone hacked her computer, gained control of her passwords, and emptied $35,000 out of her trust account.

“It is horrible,” said Graus, a sole practitioner in Bradenton who has been working feverishly since the May 10 heist to mitigate the damage.

“These unauthorized wires were sent from my bank account through my bank’s online system, which has three layers of password logins that must be made before a wire can be sent,” Graus said.

“The bank says my IP address was the source of the wire order, but since I did not do it, it is likely that someone hacked my system and stole my passwords as I logged them in.”

“If someone hadn’t been watching over me, it could have been $450,000,” Graus said. “As it stands now, in all I will have lost $10,000 for the one that got away, the $1,000 or so it will cost me for the computer forensic analysis, and the cost of a new laptop I have to buy to solely handle my banking.”

Full Article and Source:
Hackers Loot Lawyer's Trust Account

Friday, June 25, 2010

NASGA Press Release

Unlawful and Abusive Guardianships & Conservatorships Focus of This Month’s AARP’s ‘Inside E Street’ Program, Featuring NASGA Member

AARP, as part of their Inside E Street series, will present an interview on 6/24 and 6/25 with NASGA member Danny Tate, recently freed from an unlawful Nashville conservatorship.\1/

Inside E Street is an informative half-hour talk show that delves into the issues behind the headlines. While most political talk shows focus on the news from the campaign trail and analyze poll results, Inside E Street looks at the latest developments affecting economic security, health care and retirement.

For a listing of when PBS will air this AARP program in your area, visit

NASGA is an organization of victims for victims of unlawful and abusive guardianships and conservatorships.

\1/ Note: Tate’s case involves an unbelievable “temporary” conservatorship that lasted over 2.5 years. Even now that the conservatorship has been terminated, Tate must fight to regain what’s left of his estate before the attorneys finish it off. See

Editorial: PA Supreme Court Shouldn't Let JCB Off the Hook

Of all the system failures that led to the Luzerne County judicial scandal, one of the worst was the Judicial Conduct Board's whiffing on a detailed complaint against former judge Michael T. Conahan that alleged case fixing, mob ties, and the basics of the "kids-for-cash" scheme. Now that the Interbranch Commission on Juvenile Justice has issued its report, it's up to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court to make sure the JCB undergoes meaningful reform.

There's no reason to believe the JCB won't fail again unless the justices step in. And I have real concerns that unless they do, the JCB is going to return to doing what it does best: ignoring real corruption and looking to kick only the most unpopular judges off the bench.

My fears stem from listening to some knowledgeable and sensible people make excuses for the JCB. Some of these folks claim the JCB is simply being used as a scapegoat for what happened in Luzerne County.

Right now the JCB has gotten knocked around in the press and by the ICJJ. But other than that, there have been no repercussions at an agency that was alerted to the worst judicial scandal in Pennsylvania history almost four years ago and did nothing.

Full Editorial and Source:
PA Supreme Court Shouldn't Let JCB Off the Hook

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Overseeing the Overseers

Santa Barbara County has its share of conservator abuse. It's important that more people are aware of this issue, and volunteer to oversee the care of our elderly.

For example:

—In 2006, a judge granted a conservator the right to purchase shares in 40 percent of a Montecito estate at way below market value.

—A judge granted a conservator, and the conservator’s network, $150,000 from an elderly woman’s estate, thus rewarding what the conservatee’s caring friends and relatives considered unscrupulous actions—in particular, pressuring the conservatee to undertake unnecessary home improvements.

—Conservators often support the use of heavy-duty pharmaceutical drugs with serious side effects to sedate their wards.

—Conservators also may place their wards in rest homes that give little therapy, exercise, healthy food, or kind treatment. So it's no wonder the health of their wards is declining, and they end up dying prematurely.

There may be good conservators out there, but the problem is that power and money tend to corrupt people. That's just human nature. There has to be a better paradigm or concept to help our elderly in need.

To find out more about elder abuse by conservators, one can go to the National Association to Stop Guardian Abuse (NASGA) website at

Full Editorial and Source:
Overseing the Overseers

Advocates Vs. Administrator

Elder advocates are seeking to remove Public Administrator Lynn EnEarl from guardianship of a woman they say could be living on her own.

The case of Shirley Hicks was heard by Judge Michael Gibbons on Monday afternoon.

The judge agreed that priority should be given to getting Hicks moved from the elder care facility she is in and moved to a less restrictive place. Gibbons said he would address the guardianship at a hearing on Monday.

Advocates Versus Administrator

Audit Alleges Mismanaement at CA Health Dept.

The California Department of Public Health didn't fine hospitals and nursing homes as much as they could have for health code violations and overstated an account of collected fines by nearly $10 million, an audit has found.

The California State Auditor's report released Thursday spans nearly a seven-year period and reflects a broad pattern of inattention to good accounting practices at the state department.

"We've got some fundamental issues with the department, so they need to strengthen their budget staff and accounting staff," said state auditor Elaine Howle.

Noting reports released within the last week that discovered lax reporting and flawed accounting with CDPH's Every Woman Counts program, Howle added, "We're starting to see the same problems across the department's programs."

Full Article and Source:
Audit Alleges Mismanagement at Calif. Health Department

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Danny's Diary

In the aftermath of the “Final Hearing”, I’ve been left with picking up the remnants of my life to piece it back together. The one glaring result is that this conservatorship did anything but conserve my estate. But that was never the intention of my “conservator”, his attorney, or this court.

And “saving my life” was accomplished by the grace of God and despite the malicious actions of a jealous brother, a crooked lawyer and a incompetent judge. They blew through my estate faster than a court room full of crackheads.

Another issue that is obvious is that the “Final Hearing” was anything but final. It was merely a dog & pony show that the court put on to appease the Free Danny Tate supporters and the press that was present. The adversaries thought this would make “it” and “us” all go away. I believe that will not be the case. The Judicial Code states that courts should welcome public scrutiny. Such is not the case with this court. It loathes public scrutiny, for in it crimes are committed on a daily basis. By those that have been given authority to protect the interests of “we the people”. In this probate court lawyers line their pockets with the earnings of hard working men and women who are left subjected to a judge who, at the least, ignores the law by which he has been appointed to govern, not to mention he is supposed to be elected, but that has never truly happened.

Last week the ratings of corrupt states came out in the press. Tennessee ranked #1. I believe this court represents that corruption. And it will continue unless its officers are brought to accountability. What continues to disturb me is that those who hold lawyers and judges accountable, such as the Board of Professional Responsibility and the Tennessee Court of the Judiciary, seem to be more interested in protecting errant lawyers and judges instead of protecting the citizens from them. Than again, what should we expect in the state that ranks #1 in corruption.

Governor Bredesen, you have remained silent through this entire ordeal. I hold you accountable and believe this will define your legacy.

We are at a unique time in history when public outcry over corruption amongst elected officials is at a fevered pitch. We are tired of wolves in sheep’s clothing. Crooks and liars are the cooks and fryers in the kitchen of our lives. It’s time for a house cleaning. The founding fathers are turning in their graves. The patriots who rose up against tyranny must be preparing for a rapture. In the midnight hour of our history, I would like to think their ghosts are plotting a coup.

Free Danny Tate!!!

See Also:

Facebook: Justice for Danny Tate

Facebook: Friends for Danny Tate's Defense

Texas Public Hearing on Jurisprudence Tomorrow

COMMITTEE: Jurisprudence

TIME & DATE: 1:00 PM, Thursday, June 24, 2010

PLACE: E1.016 (Hearing Room)

CHAIR: Senator Jeff Wentworth

The Senate Jurisprudence Committee will hold a public meeting to discuss the following interim committee charge:

Charge 2) Study the guardianship program implemented by the Department of Aging and Disabilities and the Department of Adult Protective Services, including the efficiency and effectiveness of the program, the relationship between the two agencies, the appropriate rights for parents, and whether clients and their assets are adequately protected.

Senate Special Hearing

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Recomended Website: NashvilleCriminals


This site will remain in effect until the Davidson County, Nashville, Tennessee Courts begin to restore their own credibility. An informed public can force the change.

Evidence clearly demonstrating the criminal conduct of various citizens and attorneys and sanctioned by a specific judge will be posted. You decide if this criminal and unethical conduct should continue.

If you don't like what you see, join me in effecting change.


See Also:
Facebook: Justice for Danny Tate

Cobain Trust Fund Loses $8Mil

Frances Bean Cobain, the sole child of Kurt and Courtney Love Cobain, is at the center of a mother- daughter conflict involving millions of dollars in lost trust fund money, violence, private meetings and “super lawyers” from both California and Washington states.

Love lost legal custody of her 17-year-old daughter on Dec. 11 for undisclosed reasons. Since then, Frances has been under the co-guardianship of Kurt’s mother, Wendy O’Connor, and his sister, Kimberly Dawn Cobain. In January, in a separate matter from the guardianship, the trustee over Frances’ trust fund, filed to remove Love from her daughter’s trust fund and replace her with O’Connor .

The trust fund litigation is separate from the Los Angeles-based guardianship proceeding. The trust fund was created in Seattle, King County, Wash. in 1997 after Frances’ father Kurt, the former lead singer, guitarist and songwriter of Nirvana died in April 1994 without a will.

Frances is the trust’s sole beneficiary but Love has a responsibility to review expenses and disbursements before they are paid out by the trustee of the Frances Bean Cobain Irrevocable Trust Fund. She also has the right to review financial statements and to act as an adviser regarding the management of the trust, but after statements revealed that the trustee, Laird Norton Tyee Trust Company, lost $8 million of Frances’ money in 2008, Love stopped receiving financial statements, her attorneys say.

Full Article and Source:
Cobain Trust Fund Loses $8 Million

Monday, June 21, 2010

Elderly Woman Evicted From Home Ruled Incompetent

Eleonore Berg was scheduled to be in court Wednesday morning for a competency hearing in front of Judge Frances King. But the 85-year-old woman only made it as far as the security checkpoint at the courthouse.

Thinking the guards might confiscate her purse, Berg declined to hand it over to be checked.

Apparently, since her longtime home at On Top of the World had been taken away, and most of her belongings had been put in storage, she was fearful of giving security personnel one of her last items of value.

Berg’s guardian, Olivia Baird, had to return the elderly woman to her assisted living facility, then come back to King’s courtroom to hear the verdict.

Not long after the 9:30 a.m. hearing in Courtroom 4B, King ruled that Berg is incapacitated, and appointed Baird as her permanent guardian.

Berg initially had been under court guardianship, but when it was discovered she did not meet one of three criteria, her case was turned over to private guardianship.

That is when Baird stepped in, along with others, to try and help Berg retain her two-bedroom, two-bath home in the retirement community off State Road 200. The home had gone into foreclosure after Berg ceased paying monthly homeowner’s association fees of $397 per month, for about two years.

Full Article and Source:
Elderly Woman Evicted From OTOW Home Rules Incompetent

Medical Whistleblower to Present at US Social Forum 2010

Medical Whistleblower is proud to be a presenter to the US Social Forum 2010.

Come see us on June 24 and 25 at 10 AM-Noon

Cobo Hall - Detroit, MI

If you can't join us in person - please join us by radio talk show.

My Blog Talk Radio show can be heard three different ways:

1) Call in by any phone - here in the USA or abroad

2) Streaming audio from the website

3) Download archive mp3 file from the website after the broadcast.

US Social Forum - Medical Whistleblower Advocacy Network

Date / Time: 6/23/2010, 9:00 PM -10 PM and also 6/24/10, at 9 PM -10PM

Call-in Number: (347) 857-4599

Source: Medical Whistleblower

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Teens Benefit from Helping Ailing Grandparents

When we consider the care of a family member with memory impairment, we often think of adult children and elderly spouses as the key players in the caregiving. Younger family members often go unrecognized for their role in this journey.

Including younger family members in the caregiving journey creates lasting memories and teaches life lessons about the value of life, health and family ties.
Intergenerational projects help shed light on this sensitive topic of educating young people about Alzheimer's disease and dementia.

The scholarship program offered by the Dubin Alzheimer's Resource Center and Magnolia Court is one way our community reaches out to young family members. The stories high school seniors write in their applications are full of inspiring lessons learned through their experiences in caring about an older family member with memory impairment.

On May 25, the Dubin Alzheimer's Resource Center awarded scholarships to Kelsi Coffman and Rachel Lundgren, graduates of the class of 2010. Each wrote a touching narrative about her family's experiences caring for a grandmother with dementia.

Full Article and Source:
Teens Benefit From Helping Ailing Grandparents

Michigan: Bills Would Help Keep Golden Years Golden

We’ve all heard the stories.

Greedy relatives or covetous “friends,” who claim to be caring for an older loved one, stripping bank accounts and using a lifetime of savings to their own personal advantage.

According to a study published in “Clinical Geriatrics,” the clinical journal of the American Geriatrics Society, persons over 50 control at least 70 percent of the nation’s household net worth and they are frequent targets for exploiters.

Victims are typically female, frail and mentally impaired; 75 percent are between the ages of 70 and 89.

Michigan Legislature currently has before it a package of bills that would protect Michigan’s 1.7 million older adults from financial abuse.

The four bills would:

• Require training for financial institution staff on financial exploitation, how to spot suspicious activity and how to report suspicious activity when detected.

• Expand the definition of abuse of vulnerable adults to include financial exploitation.

• Require financial institutions to inform account holders and provide written disclosure of the rights of joint account holders, so that those allowing access to their funds understand that joint account holders have the legal right to use the account and funds contained in it as if it is their own money.

Require courts to consider appointment of a conservator if a person under a guardianship has assets of more than a certain limit ($10,000). This is to prevent potential financial exploitation through a guardianship.

Full Article and Source;
Bills Would Help Keep Golden Years Golden