Although not studied empirically, there are abundant references in the literature to various lifestyle characteristics of the elderly believed to be linked to fraud victimization.
Charity Scams Scammers posing as charity workers contact seniors and offer up a sad story which, of course, concludes with a plea for funding. The marketer misleads the buyer into thinking the product is first rate. Gift-giving habits vary across families, as do cultural expectations regarding elderly care; thus it is essential that you examine each situation within the appropriate context.
In general, offenders are not bound by conventional norms or business ethics, and rationalize their behavior. For seniors with advanced impairments, responses requiring their participation may have limited effectiveness.
Although many seniors live in poverty, home ownership is high among this group, and many have savings, pensions, and social security income. Among some telltale signs: The challenge of the fraud itself may provide a "high," particularly when it is pulled off against wealthy or well-educated victims.
While one might guess that the promised product is never shipped, successful boiler rooms have found that reliable shipping minimizes consumer complaints, which in turn decreases the likelihood of law enforcement intervention. The scope of jurisdiction and various areas of expertise required are unlikely to be found in any one agency, requiring cooperation across traditional jurisdictions and professional boundaries.
Bear in mind that advance technology has now made it possible for calls to originate from overseas, from what used to be local area codes.
In Maryland, money transmitters such as Western Union must provide training to certain employees on how to recognize and respond to financial exploitation of seniors. Sometimes, a "good faith" relationship evolves beyond the original intent e. The Memory and Aging Project began inand enrollment is ongoing.
The second type includes those who methodically target vulnerable seniors, establish power, and obtain control over their assets. In general, such offenders may encourage investments and expenditures that benefit only themselves, steal money or property, or arrange for changes to wills, trusts, or mortgage financing for their own benefit.
Just asking a few questions can be enough to scare some con artists away. Obviously, given the complex nature of many financial transactions, mental capacity plays an important role in making sound purchases and managing financial affairs. These organizations generally provide refunds only with the threat of law enforcement action.
Have you ever been affected by any of the above schemes?
A relative or caregiver expresses concern over the cost of caring for the elder, or is reluctant to spend money for needed medical treatment. This figure may be even larger; the U. A lot of times the scam artist is in another country. Ongoing availability to customers is important to handle problems.
Any suspicious information-gathering activity from someone claiming to work for Social Security should be reported to the SSA so that a fraud report can be filed, protecting others from fraudulent activity in the future.
The victim has often formed a close bond with the offender, and may be unaware of or deny the abuse.Therefore, determining correlates of susceptibility to scams among a cohort of community-based older persons may be the most valid way to identify older adults who are most likely to fall victim to financial exploitation and inform efforts to prevent high risk seniors from falling victim to scams.
The number of senior scams is growing, with the IRS phone scam being one of the most pervasive aimed at the elderly today. Bankrate lists the most common scams and how senior citizens can avoid them. Let me first emphasize that the FBI has identified elder fraud and fraud against those suffering from serious illness as two of the most insidious of all white collar crimes being perpetrated by today's modern and high tech con-man.
A study by MetLife estimated that the annual loss to elderly victims of financial fraud (perpetrated by strangers) and abuse (perpetrated by family, friends or neighbors) was at least $ billion, a 12 percent hike over its estimate.
Every state has adopted laws to prohibit particular types of fraud and, often, to enhance penalties for fraud against the elderly. Older consumers are, of course, protected by general consumer protection laws, telemarketing laws, and other statutes governing theft, embezzlement, fraud, etc.
Sep 09, · Educate Your Elderly Parents or Grandparents About These 4 Commonly Perpetrated Scams.
1. The Home Repair Scam. The Repair Scam can occur both on and offline. Due to loneliness or diminished capacity, the elderly are particularly vulnerable because most seniors live alone and may not be able to withstand a pushy salesman.Download