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Scams from loved ones and outsiders common elder law issues

Elderly people are often the target of financial scams. Elder law issues involving fraud from complete strangers and even loved ones are plentiful across Delaware. Aging people should be on the lookout for some of the most common scams that seek to take advantage of their pensions, health situations and other elder-specific vulnerabilities.

People pretending to be official bodies, such as Medicare or the IRS, are common scams used to trick the elderly in Delaware and across the U.S.  Medicare scammers will often ask for personal information, like a Social Security number, then use that information to defraud Medicare. IRS scammers will call and tell people they owe back taxes, arranging for the money to be sent directly to them.

While these types of scams often make headlines, some of the most common elder law violations can be found closer to home. After taking over financial management of an aging relative, deceptive family members can misappropriate funds. Setting up a springing power of attorney that becomes effective when one becomes incapacitated is a good idea to help avoid people taking over and misusing money. Financial advisors are another group to watch out for, as these people are in a perfect position to take advantage of an elderly individual.

There are many scams, big and small, that can catch aging people in Delaware off guard. Remaining vigilant is important for anyone, especially those who are growing older. It is a good idea to have multiple people involved in helping you avoid or respond to these situations, such as multiple trusted relatives and an elder law lawyer.

Source: U.S. News & World Report, "10 Financial Scams to Avoid in Retirement", Rachel Hartman, May 9, 2018

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