Sources of Elderly Financial Abuse and Federal Response
The sources of elderly financial abuse come from a number of different places. Doctors and caregivers who understand these sources often see the signs of abuse before those who do not know possible abuse sources. This is why the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) and the Administration on Aging (AOA) have posted information on recognizing the sources of elderly financial abuse.
Both sites admit that more research must be done to fully understand who is financially abusing the elderly, but both sites agree that the person who financially abuses an elderly person has a few outstanding qualities:
The abuser believes he or she is not getting a “fair share” of the elder person’s assets, so there is a sense of entitlement to what is taken.
The abuser often has a family history of violence, stealing, and dishonest means of obtaining property or money.
The abuser often uses control and power dynamics to gain access to accounts, properties, and assets.
Who are The Abusers?
In many cases of financial abuse, according to the Federal government, the abuser is a family member. These family members are overwhelmingly current or past drug or alcohol users, according to current research, but ongoing research is proving that this isn’t always the case. A growing number of abusers are found to have their own mental illnesses, and nearly one in three were unemployed, according to the NIJ. As the government completes further research, more information regarding the sources of financial elder abuse is being presented on sites such as the NIJ and the AOA.
What Doctors and Caregivers Need to Know
The biggest sign of financial abuse is a sudden change in the elder’s financial situation. Caregivers and doctors must be aware of those who are around the elderly person. While it is not necessary to be suspicious of everyone, it is important to watch for the signs of financial elderly abuse. Sadly, professionals can only be retroactive, reacting only after an incident has happened. However, understanding the signs and reacting after the first few instances can save an elderly person a lot of money and assets.
Please call Vancouver Home Health Care Agency with questions regarding the sources of elder financial abuse.
At Vancouver Home Health Care Agency, Caring and Compassion is our business.