Isolation Increases Elder Abuse
Isolation Increases Elder Abuse in Utah Seniors.
In a recent New York case, an elderly man, diagnosed with prostate cancer and Alzheimer’s disease was left in the care of a family friend while his daughter took a short vacation.His daughter returned to discover that her supposed friend had married her father.
It must have been a busy week because the new bride was added to her elderly husband’s will and listed as the beneficiary of his retirement account before his daughter returned. The groom did not live much longer, so a third issue at trial was his dubious widow’s right to an elective share. This case is demonstrative of how quickly devastating financial exploitation can occur. Unfortunately what makes this case truly rare are not the outrageous facts, but rather that the abuser was challenged.
Elder financial abusers come in many forms. Scams such as telemarketer swindles,door to door sales fraud, mail solicitations, lottery scams, internet scams Medicare/Medicaid fraud together with more legitimate business exploitation such as bad faith mortgage loans fraudulent investment advice, and many others accounted for 45% of reported abuse of elderly from 2010-2011. Abuse of elderly by family members and fiduciaries accounted for 47% over the same period. The latter category is of most concern because it involves abuse by actors who are often legally empowered to ensure the victim’s welfare during incapacity.