How to Protect Elderly Loved Ones from Scams

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The elderly are targets for a variety of crimes by those that feel this group of individuals is a quick and easy victim to take advantage. Numerous scams are concocted that involve older persons.

They may be the object of being charmed out of money, deceived and manipulated. Some schemes include the use of relatives in danger in other countries where money is needed in order to assist these sons, daughters, grandchildren and others. Single men and women who have retired with a hefty estate are marks for criminal activities that deprive them of their savings. Some con artists form a strategy of becoming the wife or husband of those that may be on the brink of death. Ingratiating themselves into the family and insinuating their agenda to become the heirs may reap rewards in many instances.

Other forms of criminal acts targeting the elderly often include forms of fraud. Stealing or copying personal and private information is one way of forging documents, creating credit cards, opening accounts and moving money from one area to another. The data taken may be used against the targeted individual or he or she may just become collateral damage when offenses against the law occur. Even with all these schemes in play, there are ways to protect elderly loved ones from these violations. Information on how to proceed is the best way to stay ahead of these criminals. It may be obtained through legal channels with a lawyer or through experts in the field.

Easy Targets

For many years, criminals target those they feel are the easiest to rob. This usually includes the elderly, disabled and those with diminished capacity. Financial fraud and other crimes may be committed by both companies that are legitimate and unlawful. Activities these businesses take when investing money, handling personal private information and raising profits may be valid or invalid even when the business is stable and effective. When the recession in the economy occurred, fraud reports rose when involving the elderly community. Because of this, the Federal Trade Commission and state organizations along with lawyers have initiated programs in order to assist the older population. Protection of these groups has become important.

Protecting the Elderly

There are many instances where a private individual may protect his or her family from those that violate the law both personally and through a business. Federal agencies and local consumer organizations may be contacted f incidents of this nature arise. Additionally, there are steps that have been advised in order to avoid future fraud crimes by others. Many older persons may need family or friends to follow these steps because they may not know how to protect themselves.

One way to avert possible financial disaster it so be placed on the Federal Do Not Call registry. This registry gives the person the right to avoid telemarketing calls. When a person knows he or she should not be receiving these, criminals are easier to spot when they pretend to be with these companies. There are those that pretend to be with the registry, and these individuals should be hung up on to ensure no private data is relayed to them.

Obtaining an unpublished number is a great way of avoiding any call not wanted. The person that has this number may only be called by those that know the number. It is not published publically, and this assists in preventing scams, violations and overseas calls with persons using other schemes to steal the money of the elderly. Another way to prevent fraudulent crimes from occurring is to ensure the older person has the strength to decline unnecessary services, products and features from any phone solicitor or salesperson that comes to his or her door. Some of these services or features are placed on plans the individuals is unaware of that costs him or her each month. Many products sold in this manner are fake or do not work as advertised. Because numerous aging members of the community live alone, only he or she may ensure that these requests are declined.

Precautions and Legal Assistance

It is only with taking precautions that an elderly individual may avoid fraud crimes from affecting his or her life. When younger members of the family find pieces of information that may assist in these matters, it is never more important to share them with older relatives. Hiring a lawyer to understand what is legal and what may be a fraud crime may be important as well. Counsel with a lawyer may aid these persons in retaining what finances are left after a long life of hard work.


Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer.

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