What is Elder Financial Fraud?
Elder Financial Fraud is an increasingly common scam targeting senior citizens. It involves transactions in which a trusted person, usually a family member, caregiver, or close friend, uses the relationship to defraud the senior. Financial abuse often occurs with the implied acknowledgement and consent of the elder person and can be more difficult to detect.
Elder financial abuse puts enormous emotional duress on the elders by increasing their risk of depression, decreasing their quality of life, and in some cases unnecessary institutionalization.
Why are Elders Targeted?
Older individuals may be targeted because they possess more assets, such as savings, annuities, retirement accounts, stocks and bonds, insurance policies, and property than younger individuals.
Senior citizens with cognitive impairments, mental health conditions, or physical disabilities may be dependent upon others for assistance in making financial decisions or carrying out daily transactions, and therefore may be even more vulnerable to theft, exploitation, or undue influence.
What to Do
If someone you know may be a victim of elder financial fraud, alert the financial institution where the possible victim conducts their banking as soon as possible.