Top Five Quick Tips for Preventing Elder Financial Abuse
The sad truth is that elder abuse is more prevalent than ever as financial predators stalk the elderly and look for ways to swindle money from their life savings. Whether it’s because of illness, cognitive impairments, or a more trusting nature, seniors are far more likely to become a victim of frauds and scams than the average person.
The elderly population is targeted because they typically have accumulated more savings and various assets over their lifetimes. Elder financial abuse can take many forms, from strangers trying to scam a senior out of money, to a caregiver or relative taking advantage of a situation. The good news, however, is elder financial abuse can often be prevented with a little planning and education.
1. FIND A SECOND PAIR OF EYES TO LOOK OVER ANY BANK ACCOUNTS
Bank accounts always need a second pair of eyes, so arrange for a family member to take a peek at grandma or grandpa’s accounts once a month to make sure there are no signs of fraud happening.
2. PUT ASSETS IN A TRUST
If you are fearful about an elderly family member getting scammed out of their property, have them put their assets into a trust. The trust will own the property, but both you and the other person can act as the trustees and thus prevent any possible scams.
3. VISIT OFTEN AND STAY IN CONTACT
Elderly people become more vulnerable to financial abuse when they are isolated and alone. Be sure to make time and visit and keep in touch with the elder person in your life. Make a habit of scheduling visits or phone calls to find out what is going on in their lives.
4. QUESTION REQUESTS FOR MONEY OR TRANSFER OF OWNERSHIP
Financial predators typically use scare tactics to lure money from unsuspecting people. These scams will take the form of suspicious emails, phone calls, or letters claiming the person owes money or back taxes. Educate the elderly person in your life about these scams, and ask them never to send money or make a supposed back payment without consulting you first.
5. CONSULT WITH AN ELDER LAW ATTORNEY
An experienced Elder Law attorney can help set up living trust and various other documents to help prevent any financial abuse. Finding an attorney that your family trusts will turn into a tremendous resource for avoiding elder financial abuse.
When you are ready to begin the process of protecting your elder adult’s finances, give us a call at (800) 403-6078 for a FREE consultation today! Our team of experienced attorneys specializes in worth with the elderly population, and we are ready to help your family soon.
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