Understanding Financial Abuse of the Elderly

Financial abuse is a type of abuse that people in nursing homes can experience. If you suspect a loved one is suffering from financial abuse, continue reading to learn more about the effects, how to detect it, how to talk to your loved one, and how we can help.

Financial Abuse

Financial abuse is when someone takes advantage of another person’s financial situation. Elderly people are vulnerable to this type of abuse because they may not pay much attention to their finances or they might not have the mental capacity to realize what is happening.

Types and Examples of Financial Abuse

To determine whether your loved one is experiencing financial abuse, it is important to be able to identify the types of abuse. Here is a list of a few ways that elderly are abused financially.

  • Bank fraud
  • Cashing checks without permission
  • Coercion into signing a document
  • Credit card fraud
  • Deceit to sign a document
  • Forged signatures
  • Investment fraud
  • Misuse of money or possessions
  • Stealing of money or possessions
  • Stolen identity

The Signs of Financial Abuse

These are some signs that your loved one is being financially abused. If you notice any of these things happening, it is important to determine if financial abuse is happening.

  • Addition of a name to a signature card
  • Changes to a Will, title, policy, or power of attorney
  • Changes in financial condition
  • Large withdrawals from accounts
  • Missing cash or possessions
  • Misuse by nursing home of personal account
  • Phony account activity
  • Scams
  • Unnecessary subscriptions to goods or services
  • Unpaid bills

How To Talk To Your Loved Ones About Financial Abuse

When discussing financial abuse with your loved ones, it may be a hard topic to discuss. When it comes to financial abuse, a patient may not even realize it’s going on. Make sure you are patient and listen to what they are saying. You should do everything possible to support them and help them get to the bottom of things. If you want to discuss abuse with your loved ones but are unsure how, here are some questions you can ask:

  • Do you feel safe in this facility?
  • Are you happy in this facility?
  • Do you feel like the staff takes good care of you?
  • Are there any staff members that you share information about your finances with?
  • Have you made any recent changes to your finances lately?

Getting Help

If you suspect your loved one is experiencing financial abuse, please contact us. We will help you take the right steps to get the help you need. You can call us at 203-208-3065.

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