Senior Financial Exploitation "the crime of the 21st century".
Taking about money with your aging parent or parents can difficult, but it's important. More and more seniors are victims of Elder Financial Exploitation, but if you know what to watch for you might be able to keep your parents becoming a victim.
In 2017 alone, reports of suspicious financial activity involving seniors totaled $1.7 billion, according to the
U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. *
Senior financial exploitation and fraud is the illegal or improper use of a senior's resources for another's profit or advantage.
- Exploitation - usually involves someone the senior know, such as a family member or caregiver
- Fraud - is usually perpetrated by a stranger, such as a telemarketer or investment promoter
Why don't older adults report financial exploitation?
- Shame or embarrassment – how did I let this happen
- Self -blame
- Fear of retaliation – can't see the grandkids
- Lack of awareness – didn't realize it is a crime
What do you do if you suspect elder financial abuse?
- Contact Washington Adult Protective Services in your town or state for help. 1-866-363-4276
- Report all instances of elder financial abuse to your local police if fraud is involved, they should investigate.
- If you suspect investment fraud, contact the Washington State Department of Financial Institutions at 1-877-746-4334.
- Download a copy of MONEY SMART for older Adults a resource guide from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
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