The Federal Trade Commission saw fraud complaints involving Americans age 60 and older rise as much as 47% from 2012-2014, and estimates that this fraud has cost seniors anywhere from $3 billion to $30 billion dollars, collectively, little or none of which can be recovered. Those are huge statistics that clearly indicate the negative impact of senior scams that most certainly affects us all.
You may know someone who has experienced an elder scam. A recent study shows that 1 in 20 senior citizens have admitted to being financially abused. In fact, The Journal of General Internal Medicine states, “If a new disease struck that many older Americans, we would probably declare a public health crisis.”
Senior scams run rampant because the retired elderly have managed to save good money for their retirement years, they often live alone, they are trusting, they are vulnerable, and in some cases, they have declining mental health.
Concerned caregivers of Home Helpers are well-versed in a combination of ways to provide senior care services to prevent financial abuse.
For example, since many seniors are not savvy when it comes to computers, caregivers will happily assist with opting out of annoying, and often fraudulent, phone calls and direct mail solicitations by going online to specific websites that provide the services.
Moreover, caregivers can research contractors for you online through the Better Business Bureau, Angie’s List, and state licensing websites. They know to always make sure a contractor you hire is licensed and bonded, and they will advise you to never pay for services up front. Caregivers can also answer “unknown” calls and request your phone number be added to “Do Not Call” lists.
It’s important that seniors not isolate themselves by frequently staying home alone. Caregivers can provide transportation and companionship to keep elders active and social, out and about!
Home Helpers strongly advises seniors to seek assistance from a trusted family member who can oversee financial matters and bank accounts to monitor for scams or fraudulent activity. A Power of Attorney or Elder Attorney will carefully advise about finances and investments in the event you are hospitalized or incapacitated for periods of time.
Don’t be a victim of senior scams. Call Home Helpers today for more information about senior care services and what can be done to protect you or someone you love from suffering financial abuse. 727-942-2539