Elder Fraud Alerts – Common Scams Used On the Elderly

Elder Fraud

Financial elder abuse is an enormous problem in the United States.  It’s only going to get worse as the population of the country ages on a collective level.  There will be more elderly people who others will attempt to scam.  As a result, more people will lose money unnecessarily.  The elder abuse lawyers at Gomez Trial Attorneys are working constantly to bring awareness to the public with regards to elder financial abuse.  One of the ways we can help is to share as much information as possible.  Thanks to an article that appeared online recently, we are going to provide our visitors with some elder fraud alerts.  Loved ones should watch for these signs of elder fraud.

About the Elder Fraud Article

Forbes Magazine published the article.  Those interested in reading it can find a link here.  The author uses information provided by the National Alliance for Caregiving.  This information explains the nature of care provided for older people in the United States.  These data include:

  • More than 43 million people across the country have provided unpaid care to someone else.
  • 34.2 million Americans have cared for adults who were 50 years old or older at the time.
  • 60 percent of the caregivers are female.
  • 85 percent of caregivers are helping a relative.
  • 49 percent are caring for a parent or an in-law.

These statistics are provided because caregivers are seen as the first people outside of the targets of scams that would notice that something is amiss.  As such, loved ones need to help caregivers understand and recognize common scams and signs of elder fraud.

The article goes on to draw information from ServeOurSeniors.org to provide some examples of common types of elder fraud and scams.  These examples include:

  • Pension advances – These scams involve offering someone a lump sum payment in exchange for a piece of a government-guaranteed pension.
  • Senior “specialists” – Financial professionals will tell seniors that they are providing them with extra training, but many times this is just a front to collect a large commission.
  • High-Yield investments – People will offer an older person an investment opportunity with little or no risk and an enormous return.
  • Unregistered brokers – Unregistered brokers will often sell what are basically junk bonds to older people, only to disappear before they are found out.

How To Help Prevent Elder Fraud

Caregivers need to do what’s necessary to learn as much as possible about common schemes such as those listed above.  If you notice your patient getting phone calls, ask what they are about if they sound suspicious.  If you see mail that looks threatening, ask questions.  Basically, remain as involved in the details of your patient’s life as possible.  Doing so may provide you with the opportunity to notice anything that may be potentially wrong.

If you are a loved one, you need to make sure to vet any caregiver that’s hired carefully.  There are also forms of elder fraud out there that work through caregivers.  Assuming you trust that person, you’ll also need to work with him or her to discuss any potential warning signs.  Don’t be afraid to ask questions either of the caregiver or your loved one.  Doing so could put a stop to elder fraud either before it occurs or soon after it begins.

If you or someone you love has suffered as a result of elder fraud, you need to contact the elder abuse lawyers at Gomez Trial Attorneys as soon as possible to schedule a free initial consultation.

Posted in: Elder Abuse
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