What is Financial Elder Abuse? | Peck Law Group

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What is Financial Elder Abuse?

What is Financial Elder Abuse?

What is Financial Elder Abuse?

Financial elder abuse is a different kind of abuse that an individual perpetrates via the illegal diversion, theft or misappropriation of funds or property of the old one.

Often the elderly have a difficult time managing their resources, and so depend on others for help. It’s at this time that unscrupulous individuals may make attempts to steal property, land, goods, and money using deception, intimidation, etc.

Who could Inflict Financial Abuse upon your Loved Ones?

To determine if your loved one is being abused financially, we must first clarify who could potentially target your loved one for abuse.

Personal Concierge

A surprisingly large number of cases of financial abuse occur between an older person and their personal concierge. Often relatives or guardian family members are in a strong position to commit financial abuse.

With the confidence of the victim in hand, the guardian slowly steals possessions of the person. Some can also use coercion to force older individuals to sign over land, property or access to bank accounts. Guardians can also manipulate the “authority” and the layout of the will.

A personal concierge also can be abusive.

Structured Services (e.g. Nursing Homes)

Many people are concerned about the quality of care for their relatives in nursing homes. However, some people forget to keep a watchful eye on how the nursing home levies fees that can consume all of the finances of the elderly.

Always make sure the costs are correct for the level of care and attention. If the products and services account shows items that you believe have never been carried out, follow up with the administrators of the organization.

It’s also important to monitor any new “best friends” of your loved ones, particularly in relation to staff. If your loved one begins to add in these individuals to financial accounts or wills, or shows willingness to buy extravagant things for them, they could very easily be victims of a pyramid scheme, intimidation, or ‘Sweet Heart scam.

Deceiver

Cheaters come in all shapes and sizes and from all over the world. The elderly are more prone to them due to the constant evolution of technology and the potential loss of acute mental-awareness.

Telemarketing swindlers use phone scams to target older people who they think they can frighten or force to pay. Be sure to review checks for unusual or excessive amounts sent to an unknown person. Always keep track of your loved ones’ financial decisions and keep a watchful eye on expenditures, looking for anything that appears dishonest.

The elderly are also vulnerable to identity theft, including credit card and account hijacking. It may be difficult for anyone to ensure their identity and numbers, and the elderly often have difficulty keeping pace with technology, accounts, phone numbers, etc.

Take Action if Financial Abuse is Discovered

If you discover financial abuse, do not hesitate to act. Collect as much information and documents as you can about the abuse. Find a local attorney in your area who specializes in these types of cases, and do your best to stay one step ahead of fraudsters.

Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect Attorney Steven Peck

About the Author

Attorney Steven Peck has been practicing law since 1981. A former successful business owner, Mr. Peck initially focused his legal career on business law. Within the first three years, after some colleagues and friend’s parents endured nursing home neglect and elder abuse, he continued his education to begin practicing elder law and nursing home abuse law.


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