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Elder Abuse and Financial Exploitation

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Elder Abuse and Financial Exploitation Powered By Docstoc
					The elderly are prone to all forms of abuse because of their frail and
vulnerable nature. Elder abuse can happen in their home, in a nursing
home, an extended living facility or other senior care center. Because of
their known vulnerabilities, they can be especially susceptible to
financial exploitation and identity theft schemes. The very people who
typically commit such crimes against the elderly are the ones who are
closest to them and have the opportunity to take full advantage of them.

Aside from the victim's age, elder abuse can affect every race, every
socio-economic background, every religion, educational background and
geographic location. Elder abuse is a global problem, plaguing nursing
homes, extended living facilities and personal residences all over the
world.

Unfortunately, many elder abuse victims suffer in silence. Either they
have no family members or friends to turn to, or they think that their
cries for help will be ignored and they fear retaliation from their
abusers. Some victims of elder abuse aren't even aware that they are
being victimized and so financial exploitations go undetected
indefinitely or until it is too late and the damage is already done.

Many elder abuse victims remain silent because they fear the
repercussions their family members might face if they are criminally
prosecuted, while others are too embarrassed to admit they have lost
their money to unscrupulous predators. Others fear that nobody will
believe them, chalking up their allegations to hallucinations or
Alzheimer's.

Financial abuse consists of theft or embezzlement of money or any other
property from an elderly person. It can be as minor as taking cash from a
victim's purse or wallet and as insidious and cunning as turning the
victim's property over to the abuser.

It is important to be vigilant if you suspect that your loved one has
fallen prey to a predator. Keep an eye out for unusual bank account
activity, such as withdrawals from an ATM when the individual was at home
or at a time when they could not get to a bank.

Also look for unusual debits on their account, signatures on checks that
do not resemble their signature, strange credit card transactions, unpaid
bills when someone else is designated to pay the bills, a lack of
personal amenities, a change in spending patterns, or the odd appearance
of a stranger who begins a close friendship and offers to handle the
elder's finances for them.

A clue that there may be something to worry about is social isolation. If
friends or family members are being denied visitation or contact with the
elderly person, there might be something to worry about. Furthermore, if
the elder is not able to speak freely or without the caregiver present,
it may give you cause for concern.

Elder abuse can also involve telemarketing fraud, identity theft, and
predatory lending. On a more intimate level, even family members can take
advantage of their relatives. People empowered with "Power of Attorney"
can abuse their position by taking money from the elder's bank,
transferring property and even placing the elder into a long-term care
facility against their will.

The elderly can be abused by family members, conservators, caregivers,
trustees, representative payees, financial planners, attorneys and
friends amongst others. If you suspect that you or your loved one have
been a victim of elder abuse, contact a caring and compassionate estate
planning attorney today before it's too late.

The Law Offices of David A. Shapiro is dedicated to servicing the
residents of Los Angeles and the surrounding areas for all their estate
planning needs. Their firm can help you with any matter relating to
estate planning, wills, elder abuse, guardianships, probate and many
more. They take pride in their ability to help their clients both meet
their goals and protect their assets at the same time. If you would like
more information about what steps you can take to further protect your
property and assets, contact a Los Angeles estate planning attorney from
their firm by calling (310) 773-0377.

				
DOCUMENT INFO
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