Have you had an elderly loved one be financially taken advantage of through the use of the internet? Without proper financial protection from consultation with an estate planning attorney, there are many threats online for the elderly.
Why the Elderly Are The Target of Scams
Several factors combine to make many senior citizens victims of financial abuse – many have a large “nest egg” available for investment; many live alone and isolation makes them perfect targets for telemarketing; memory problems may enhance gullibility; they tend to be unwilling to report victimization or poor judgment due to fear of losing independence.
Another serious threat contributing to the financial abuse of the elderly is access to the internet. Those of us who use the internet on a regular basis have become accustomed to ignoring the many scams we stumble upon throughout the day.
However, for our elderly loved ones, it may not be as easy to ignore the email they received stating that they won the lottery in a foreign country or that they inherited millions of dollars from a deceased long-lost cousin. Their trusting nature usually makes senior citizens a much easier target for scams such as these.
Who Can You Trust?
Many times financial internet scams involving the elderly are more difficult to detect than the flashing advertisement on the side of the screen. It’s possible that your parents were actively seeking an investment specialist and found someone who seemed like an expert. After several conversations with the person (usually through email or over the phone) your elderly parents seem to think this investment opportunity is one they can’t pass up. Before realizing it, they’ve signed away thousands of dollars that they’ll probably never see again.
The question is – how do you protect your elderly parents from being taken advantage of? The most proactive way to ensure that your parents don’t lose money to online scams is to have access to their financial statements. But most importantly you should have your parents meet with an elder law attorney to discuss financial planning and how they can best protect their assets. Contact estate planning lawyer, Adam J. Tobin today for a free consultation.