Elder laws are in place to protect the health and financial well-being of the older population in Florida and other states throughout the nation. Since those in their older years may experience cognitive decline, they’re more susceptible to financial abuse than those in their younger years. To ensure the financial health of your loved one, it’s important to understand the different signs of financial abuse so that you can identify it and take action.
What is financial elder abuse?
At its most basic level, financial elder abuse is defined as using an older adult’s assets or money in a way that is contrary to their needs, interests and wishes. In these cases, the abuser seeks to get personal gain from using the elder’s financial assets. This is what’s known as an undue influence over the elder because the abuser uses their position of trust to manipulate the elderly person. In many cases, the abuser gains control of the elderly person’s property, money, trust, inheritance and even their life decisions through a power of attorney.
Common signs of financial elder abuse
When it comes to identifying financial elder abuse, there are some common signs that will give it away. When an elderly person changes their deeds, wills or even trust into the name of one particular person, it’s likely that the person may be an abuser. If the elderly person starts to make very large purchases for one particular person, that person may be an abuser trying to benefit from the finances of the elderly person.
Elder abuse is not simply confined to physical harm. Elderly people can be taken advantage of in a financial sense. By understanding what elder financial abuse is and the common signs, and working with an attorney with knowledge of elder law, you might be able to identify if this is happening to one of your loved ones.