The Sandusky Register recently posted a story that helps better explain the problem of elder financial exploitation. We have often discussed the problems of senior financial abuse here-each day seems to present another story of a vulnerable senior citizen losing money in one of these scams.
Our Chicago nursing home attorneys at Levin & Perconti are specifically attuned to the problem when it occurs at nursing care facilities. Often the staff members at nursing homes have access to financial records, banking documents, and personal information that make it very easy to steal funds from the residents who trust them to help handle their affairs.
The reasons for the exploitation of seniors vary, but the recent news post helps explain what makes our elders particularly attractive targets for criminals. Seniors have years of working under their belts with a lifetime of savings. These large nest eggs attract the attention of those willing to defraud others for money. Many seniors have also lost a spouse or partner-that means they are single, without a second individual looking out for their dealings with others. In fact, many elderly individuals are isolated socially. The loneliness of many seniors often make them eager to give their confidence and trust to those posing as salesmen or other scammers, willing to accept any deal offered. Besides that, seniors are culturally polite and report feeling guilty if they tell a potential fraud artist that they are not interested in some offer or if they hang up a phone without having a conversation.
In addition, seniors are more likely to not be well-versed in computer use, making it harder for them to gather information and look into the validity of financial dealings. On a more basic note they are also more likely to have memory problems. Those impairments can be exploited by financial predators.
It is important to take special care to notice the susceptibility of our elder friends and family to financial abuse. Anyone who is in a position of authority or power should be especially carefully to ensure that these senior finances are protected.