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Types of elder financial abuse: Is your loved one being hurt?

One of the dangers of growing older relates to the fact that — even if you’re financially independent — you could become physically dependent on others for your care and daily life needs. This will leave you vulnerable to elder financial abuse.

Hopefully, as an elderly adult, you will have people around you who make your best interests their priority. And hopefully, all Americans will keep a watchful eye to ensure that their loved ones, family members and friends do not get hurt by one of the following types of elder financial abuse:

Coercion by way of violence or neglect: Sometimes people close to an elderly person will use violence or deprivation of their needs — like food and basic care — to coerce them into giving them money.

Constant requests for money: Family members and others around an elderly person could take advantage of the person’s kindness and memory loss by constantly asking them to provide money.

Removing money from joint bank accounts: Elderly individuals commonly create joint accounts with their loved ones so that their loved ones will receive the money in the event of their death. Sometimes loved ones take advantage of this relationship and drain the entire account.

Theft: An elderly person could find that people close to him or her are stealing things. They might say they’re borrowing it but never return it, or they might just take the item and sell it.

Lodger and roommate abuse: Elderly individuals who need care may ask someone to live with them for free in exchange for servicing their basic care needs. These lodgers and roommates often become freeloaders and don’t fulfill their end of the bargain.

Real estate scams: Fraudsters have been known to trick an elderly individual into signing over real estate deeds or to take out unneeded mortgages to invest in risky ventures.

If you or someone you love is being victimized by elder abuse, stand up for your rights and put a stop to the abuse now. You may also be able to use Florida elder law and estate planning strategies to protect you and your loved one from this despicable behavior.

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