Take Steps to Prevent Senior Financial Scams

A study released by MetLife Mature Market Institute, New York, revealed that perpetrators of elder financial abuse typically are not strangers to the victim: Most perpetrators have gained the trust of the older individual, according to the March 2009 report.

The shocking truth: Family members and caregivers are culprits in 55% of reported cases.

Take steps to reduce the likelihood you or a loved one will become a victim:

* Establish who will have power of attorney.
* Don’t commingle funds with those of the person granted power of attorney.
* Check references and conduct criminal or background checks on all hired help.
* Be suspicious of all phone solicitations. Simply say “no thank you” and hang up.
* Get to know credit union staff members; they are trained to recognize warning signs affecting accounts and to report suspicious activity.

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