Learn How To Recognize The Signs of Fraud Against Seniors
Seniors are often victims of financial scams. These scams are not perpetrated by strangers only. Sometimes family members or friends are behind scams too. Financial abuse by family members includes depleting joint checking accounts or promising care in exchange for money or property but not delivering it.
You can help your loved one avoid financial exploitation by using only trustworthy organizations when making financial arrangements and decisions. It is also wise to have everything in writing and avoid verbal assurances. Before sharing any personal or financial information, seniors should always ask why someone needs them.
There are many ways in which seniors can be tricked. You can protect your loved one by familiarizing them with the most common schemes such as lottery and sweepstakes scams, funeral and cemetery scams, grandparent scam, health care/Medicare/health insurance fraud, and various Internet frauds.
Let’s take a closer look at the most popular scams:
Lottery and sweepstakes scams: Seniors are informed that they have won the lottery, but in order to unlock the prize, they must send in money to cover mailing and other expenses. Keep in mind that when it comes to real lottery winnings, there are no fees to pay. It is important for seniors to be aware of this.
Funeral and cemetery scams: Scammers usually read the obituaries to find grieving widows or widowers. They take advantage of them by claiming the deceased owed them money. It is also worth mentioning that sometimes funeral homes can add unnecessary charges to the bill.
Grandparent scam: In this type of fraud, the scammer impersonates a grandchild in distress asking for money to get out of an emergency situation.
If your loved one is not computer savvy, you can protect them by telling them what types of online behavior they should avoid. You can also help them with online searches and purchases. If you suspect your loved one is the victim of a fraud, you should inform the authorities at once.