The National Adult Protective Services Association (NAPSA) reports1 that financial abuse and exploitation is a rapidly increasing form of elder abuse in the United States. Financial elder abuse occurs anytime another individual wrongfully or fraudulently takes money or property from an elderly adult. Financial abusers can be strangers, caretakers, or even trusted family members or friends. No matter who commits the financial abuse, they often substantially deplete the estate of their victim, taking assets that would belong to rightful beneficiaries upon the death of the victim.
There are numerous financial abuse tactics, including sweepstakes schemes, convincing the victim to sign a Power of Attorney2 to gain access to accounts, Medicare scams, intimidation tactics to obtain money, or simply outright stealing money from an unsuspecting person. If you are the victim of financial abuse or the beneficiary of a victim, you deserve to recover the assets that were unlawfully taken by an abuser.
The following are only some of the common signs that financial elder abuse is occurring:
- Sudden unexplained drops in checking, savings, or other accounts
- Large withdrawals from accounts
- The elder suddenly adds someone unexpected to a bank or credit account
- Sudden transfer of title or assets to someone unexpected
- Sudden appearance of an individual in the elderly adult’s life (trying to gain their trust)
- Abrupt changes in beneficiaries of insurance accounts or other estate documents
- Appearance of bills for services that were not received
- Receiving services that were not necessary
If you notice these or any other suspicious financial factors, your loved one and their estate may be suffering financial exploitation.
Contact an experienced probate and estate planning attorney for assistance today
If you believe that your loved one was the victim of financial abuse and that the abuser has money or property that rightfully belongs to the estate, your first step should be to contact and experienced attorney who understands estate planning and probate litigation.
THE EXPERIENCED LEGAL TEAM AT THE DICKSON LAW GROUP IS COMMITTED TO HELPING PROTECT THE RIGHTS OF VICTIMS OF ELDER ABUSE AND THEIR FAMILIES, SO CALL OUR OFFICE IN SEATTLE OR TACOMA AT (206) 621-1110 OR (253) 572-1000 FOR A FREE PHONE CONSULTATION TODAY.