Elder Financial Abuse Awareness
Signs Of Elder Financial Abuse
Get Some Help
If you suspect financial abuse against an elderly person, get them help by notifying
proper bank personnel and local law enforcement.
You can also visit the National Center on Elder Abuse https://ncea.acl.gov or call
The Eldercare Locator Helpline at 1-800-677-1116.
Common Financial Scams
Financial scams perpetrated against older people include a broad
range of conduct; from outright taking of money or property to
forging a signature on a legal document, such as a will or deed,
to getting paid for care, products, or services and then not
Keep an eye out for some of the following financial scams...
investment and credit card fraud, lottery scams,and identity theft.
Scammers also use the phone to sell seniors goods that either
never arrive or are worthless junk.
Getting unauthorized access to funds. In "Sweetheart Scams”,
alleged suitors woo older people, convincing them that love and
care are their motivations for being included on bank accounts or
property deeds; the suitors usually disappear along with the property.
Charging excessive amounts of money. Smooth-talking scammers
first convince seniors that they need some goods or services, then
seriously overcharge them -- often hiding the high cost in
extravagant schemes involving interest and installment payments.
Using fraudulent legal documents. Many scammers cloak their
actions in legal authority, procuring a power of attorney or will or
other legal document giving them access to a senior's property.
They get seniors to sign these documents by lying to, intimidating,
or threatening the seniors.
Faking an injury scenario. In this situation, a scammer claims to
have a connection to law enforcement and tells an elder that a
child or other close family member has been seriously injured or
is in jail. The scammer then convinces the senior to give him or her
money for medical treatment or bail.
Offering false prizes. A good example of this is the "You have won
the lottery" scam. In this scam, con artists tell an elder that he or she
has just won a huge cash prize, but needs to send in some money --
usually in money orders -- to free it up from customs officials.
Doing unsolicited home repair work. Typically working in teams of
two or more, scammers scour neighborhoods and then appear on
an elderly person’s doorstep claiming to spot something in need of
fixing -- then often claim that their initial investigation reveals a more
serious problem, with a more expensive solution.