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How can I avoid elderly financial abuse?

On Behalf of | Apr 11, 2020 | Elder Law | 0 comments

Elder Financial Abuse

Elderly people are often the target of money scams and abuse, sometimes at the hands of their own loved ones. The belief is that age-related cognitive decline makes a person more susceptible to financial scams and coercion, with sometimes devastating results on a person’s bank account. Fortunately, it is possible to protect yourself and your finances, no matter your age. 

Stay in touch with friends & family 

Cognitive decline may not play as big of a role in elderly financial scams as believed. The bigger factor is social isolation, which makes you more vulnerable to the advances of people posing as friends in search of money. When you have strong social connections with friends and family, you are less likely to seek out unhealthy friendships with people who do not have your best interests in mind. Additionally, the more connections you have, the more people you have to discuss financial concerns or issues. Sometimes, an outside point of view can prevent you from making a poor financial decision. 

Hire financial consultants 

If you lack trustworthy social connections or have considerable wealth, financial advisors, consultants, and attorneys can also be helpful. When you have financial professionals on your side, you have access to a skilled and informed team that can help you make the best decisions. Not only will this help you avoid financial wrongdoing, you can also develop a wealth management plan for your assets and estates. 

Name a power of attorney 

If your capacity is diminished by Alzheimer’s or dementia, you may be unable to make sound financial decisions on your own. In this case, naming a power of attorney, which is a person that makes financial decisions on your behalf, ensures your finances will be in good hands. You should have a person in mind well before the need arises, and you should also have a conversation with this person before moving forward. Being a power of attorney is a great responsibility, and you want to choose someone you can trust to manage your finances.