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[DATE]

Senator Thomas Umberg, Chair
Senate Committee on Judiciary
1021 O Street, Room 3240
Sacramento, CA 95814

sent via CA Legislative Portal

RE: AB 2773 (Kalra) – Elder and Dependent Adults: Abuse and Neglect – Support 

Dear Chairperson Umberg:

I am writing to express my support for AB 2773, a bill to lower the burden of proof to a preponderance of the evidence if the defendant intentionally destroyed or concealed crucial evidence in the case.

Currently, if a resident of a long term care facility is egregiously injured as a result of abuse or neglect, the facility is liable only if there is clear and convincing evidence that the facility’s conduct was reckless or worse.  This is an extremely tough burden for obtaining justice, far greater than what is required in most civil cases where liability need only be proven by a “preponderance of the evidence.”

In elder abuse cases against long term care facilities, when victims are often dead or have a cognitive impairment and eyewitnesses are often few and far between, medical records and other documents are particularly crucial.  Facilities currently have very little accountability for destroying, concealing, or fraudulently altering records.  Deterrence is needed.  Lowering the burden of proof from clear and convincing to preponderance of the evidence in these special cases would help ensure defendants don’t tip the scales of justice by falsifying evidence.

[Optional: a few sentences about why your organization supports AB 2773.]

Please vote yes on AB 2773.

Sincerely,

[Your name / organization contact information]

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