Four smart ways to protect yourself from financial elder abuse

On Behalf of | May 29, 2023 | Financial Elder Abuse

California is the perfect place for senior citizens to relax after retirement. Unfortunately, the diminished mental capacity of some elderly individuals is often preyed on by people with bad intentions. However, it’s possible to prevent elder financial abuse.

Set up a financial power of attorney

One of the best ways to prevent financial elder abuse by a conservator/trustee is to designate someone you trust as your financial power of attorney. A financial power of attorney makes money-related decisions on your behalf. This person can also help detect when potential elder financial abuse is happening.

Go paperless

It’s not uncommon for older adults to prefer doing things the old-fashioned way. So, they often elect to receive paper checks instead of direct deposits. Unfortunately, a conservator or trustee can steal checks easier than they can log in to your private online bank account. Going paperless keeps your checks and banking statements out of the mailbox.

Establish a revocable trust

Sometimes, conservators attempt to go after homes, cars and other assets. In these situations, having a revocable trust is an essential estate planning component that provides you with the protection you need. Similar to a financial power of attorney, your trust’s trustee oversees control of your stored assets.

Receive account-related notifications

Another way to prevent elder financial abuse is by enabling notifications for your financial accounts. These alerts notify you whenever these accounts receive withdrawals or deposits. A financial power of attorney can also manage these notifications if you’d prefer not to.

Whether you’ve been the victim of financial elder abuse or suspect it’s happening, have a trusted friend or family member help safeguard your accounts. One untrustworthy person could deplete your hard-earned life savings.