Depending on which source you ask, financial losses due to elder abuse are estimated to be somewhere between $3 and $40 billion per year. One of the largest contributors to that loss is unauthorized check writing or other kinds of account tapping – sometimes by a stranger, more often by a “trusted” relative or friend. The National Adult Protective Services Association estimates that 90% of abusers are family members or trusted others. They also state that financial abuse is rarely reported; only one in 44 cases is brought to light by the victim or their family. They also report that one in ten financial abuse cases are so devastating that the victims turn to Medicaid as a direct result of having their life savings wiped out by fraudulent financial activity.
Fortunately, there are a handful of companies, mostly start-ups, that have designed their products around keeping vulnerable older adults safe from financial abuse. Read more by clicking here.