When people think of elder abuse, they may conjure up images of physical and verbal abuse within a nursing home. The unfortunate fact is that there is more than one type of elder abuse, and it’s often very common among family members. That abuse involves the financial exploitation of an elderly person. However, it can be difficult to spot. The following includes a few examples of how financial exploitation occurs to the elderly.
Power of attorney
Many families decide early on to avoid placing their relatives in a nursing home due to the fears of them facing nursing home abuse. However, without medical professionals, it can be difficult to determine what the best courts of action should be in the event of an emergency. In this case, the elderly relative will place what is called the power of attorney onto a family member as a means of helping them make quick and responsible decisions involving their health and finances. Unfortunately, family members sometimes take advantage of this power and use it to line their own pockets with their relative’s life savings.
Extortion and manipulation
When people are placed in charge of an elderly person, it can open the elder up to being abused through manipulation or extortion. For example, an elderly person who has issues with their memory may be manipulated to sign away high-value assets such as property or cash. Others may face extortion as a means to scare them into giving people money.
Scams and fraud
There’s a reason why so many elders report a high number of scam calls, and that is because scammers know that the elderly are the most vulnerable. Since many of them are not familiar with newer technology, senior citizens are likely to believe certain lies, such as that their bank can’t access their online account and needs their information. In other cases, those attempting to commit fraud might convince the elderly to invest in what are often low-value investments.
If you are suspicious that your loved one has been a victim of financial exploitation, it is important to get in contact with an attorney. An experienced legal professional may help your relative seek compensation and justice.