Financial Exploitation The Undetected Abuse To Seniors Part 1

Undetected or Unreported?

For all types of elder abuse: for every reported case, there are 23.5 unreported cases.

For financial exploitation: for every reported case, there are 43.9 unreported ones.

For neglect cases: for every case undergoing investigation, there 57.2 unreported cases.

The New York State Elder Abuse Prevalence Study was the second-largest study ever conducted on elder abuse and the first one conducted on a statewide scope. Although the studys contents have not yet been released by New York State Office of Children and Family Services, the grim figures above were presented during a recent conference.

Scarier still, is the implication that the incidences of abuse may actually be even higher since the study excluded older persons who were unable to participate in telephone surveys.

Surprisingly, the most commonly reported was emotional abuse, followed by physical abuse; however, financial exploitation seemed to be the most prevalent form of elder mistreatment.

If previously undetected, how do we know if its occurring at all? And what can you do to stop it?

Prevention

Monitor Financial Activity. Look for these things:

Unusual activity based on ability, e.g. ATM use by a physically impaired person
Unexpected new withdrawals in round numbers ($50, $100, $1,000, etc.)
Withdrawals from a savings account or from checking accounts despite of penalties
Increased financial activity on bank statements
Requests to change account beneficiaries or issuance of authorizations
Elder showing signs of confusion related to finances
Property title changes or re-financing reports

Monitor Inheritance and Wills. Watch out for:

Changes in Power of Attorney or Durable Power of Attorney
Will or trust modifications when the elderly is incapable of requesting changes
Requesting will or trust changes that are in favor of a much younger friend

Caregivers should take note of these unusual behaviors:

Avoidance of discussion of financial matters that were once routine
Elderly showing signs of depression
Caregiver says the elderly wants to avoid calls and visits
Caregiver seeming to be overly concerned with financial matters
Caregiver speaking for the elder even when the elder is around
Perform background check if the caregiver has other means of support other than the elders income

Where to Get Support

For more resources related to elder abuse, you can contact the APS Network. You can find the appropriate contact numbers to call by clicking on the Report Abuse button on their website and then choosing your state.

If you require immediate legal assistance, you can contact local attorneys with years of expertise in elder law. For example, in Indianapolis City, you can reach out to Applegate-Harden Law Firm.

California Pair Allegedly Conned Elderly Woman in a Financial Elder Abuse Case

A California duo allegedly committed financial elder abuse by swindling an elderly mentally ill woman out of thousands of dollars. The defendants are a couple who reside in Riverside County. They allegedly befriended the elderly mentally ill woman and talked her into giving them money and goods. California elder abuse attorneys remind senior citizens that strangers who suddenly take an interest in your finances are not to be trusted.

The defendants in this case were arrested at their Lake Elsinore home. At the home, Ontario police found large quantities of furniture. The furniture was allegedly purchased with the senior citizens credit cards. Detectives claim that the couple convinced the senior citizen victim to open several credit card accounts, which were used to purchase the furniture. The furniture purchases added up to more than $36,000 dollars. California elder abuse attorneys say that families should keep an eye on senior family members to make sure they are not being conned.

In this case, the defendants allegedly also persuaded the senior citizen victim to withdraw $10,000 from her bank account. The elderly victim gave the money to the defendants and one of them allegedly spent the money at a Los Angeles area casino. The defendants were booked on suspicion of burglary, grand theft, financial elder abuse, and other felonies. Police are concerned that the defendants may have defrauded other elderly victims. California elder abuse attorneys say that financial elder abuse is on the rise nationwide.

Evans Law Firm, Inc. handles elder abuse, financial elder abuse, physical elder abuse, annuity fraud, consumer fraud class actions, insurance and banking fraud cases. If you think that you have witnessed or are the victim of elder abuse, or financial fraud then contact Evans Law Firm, Inc. at 415-441-8669 for a free and confidential consultation, or email us at

Sweepstakes Scams Are a Form of Financial Elder Abuse

Sweepstakes scams continue to rack up victims, despite warnings to the public. Often, senior citizens are the target of these types of scams. Thus, sweepstakes scams are a form of financial elder abuse. In a typical sweepstakes scam, a fraudster contacts an elderly victim and informs them that they have won lottery. The catch is that the elderly victim is then told that they must send in money in order to collect the sweepstakes prize. California financial elder abuse attorneys warn senior citizens not to fall victim to sweepstakes scams.

Recently, the Federal Trade Commission announced that it is putting an end to one large sweepstakes scam based in Ventura County. The defendant in the case owned three companies that allegedly mailed out more than 3.7 million letters to people in more than 156 countries. In this case, instead of asking for large sums of money from senior citizen victims, they asked for smaller sums of money. California financial elder abuse attorneys warn the public not to fall for sweepstakes scams no matter how much money the fraudsters ask for.

In this case, the senior citizen victims received personalized letters with official looking seals, stamps and bar codes. The seniors were told that they had won millions of dollars and could get the money by first sending in a small fee of $20-$30 within a limited period of time. According to the Federal Trade Commission, the scam has brought in more than $11 million dollars, mostly from senior citizens. California financial elder abuse attorneys say that senior citizens are often targeted for these kinds of mailings.

One of the letters that was mailed out as a part of this scam states that the victim has been chosen from a pool of 250,637 names. There is fine print on the back of the letter that states that consumers will actually only receive lists of sweepstakes they can enter instead of a cash prize. According to the Federal Trade Commission, the fine print does not clear the company of wrong doing because the claims are misleading and victims do not get what they are promised. Frequently, people do not see the fine print and send in the $20-$30 fee.

Sweepstakes scams such as this are widespread and one of the top five scams targeting consumers, according to the Federal Trade Commission. The fact that sweepstakes scams successfully target senior citizens makes them another form of financial elder abuse.

Evans Law Firm, Inc. handles elder abuse cases in California. If you think that you have witnessed or are the victim of elder abuse then, contact Evans Law Firm, Inc. at 41

California Victim of Financial Elder Abuse Says Bank Did Not Question Withdrawals

A recent victim of financial elder abuse claims that Bank of America did not question transactions when she withdrew money. The senior citizen victim was allegedly scammed out of approximately $35,000. Police are searching for a black woman in her 40’s who disappeared with the money. California financial elder abuse attorneys warn seniors to be wary when people they do not know well as them to withdraw money from their accounts.

According to authorities in this case, the suspect told the senior citizen victim that the president of Bank of America had contacted her and told her that he need the victim to pull money out of the bank. The suspect promised the victim $572,000 in return for doing so. The victim then withdrew $12,000 from a Bank of America in Redlands, California, and another $23,000 from another Bank of America branch in San Bernadino, California. California financial elder abuse attorneys warn seniors that bank officials will not ask them to withdraw money from their accounts.

Bank of America officials say that there are security efforts in place to protect senior citizen customers from financial elder abuse. Bank of America has stated that bankers and tellers receive extensive training to identify banking transactions that are out of the ordinary. Bank of America officials also stated that they follow applicable state laws which may include contacting Adult Protective Services or local law enforcement. California financial elder abuse attorneys remind the public to be vigilant regarding financial elder abuse.

In this case, the suspect befriended the stranger in a grocery store parking lot. After the money was removed from the accounts, the suspect told the victim that the bank president wanted them to put the money in the victim’s trunk and return to the other Bank of America branch to fill out paperwork. The suspect then went to use the bathroom and disappeared with the money.

Evans Law Firm, Inc. handles elder abuse, financial elder abuse, physical elder abuse, annuity fraud, consumer fraud class actions, insurance and banking fraud cases. If you think that you have witnessed or are the victim of elder abuse, or financial fraud then contact Evans Law Firm, Inc. at 415-441-8669 for a free and confidential consultation, or email us at