The United States government’s Administration on Aging, a part of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, identifies the major types of elder abuse such as physical abuse, sexual abuse, neglect, financial abuse, etc. A type of abuse identified by the U.S. government that is seen too often in probate and inheritance matters is elder financial abuse.
The Administration on Aging has posted the signs and symptoms of financial or material exploitation of the aging. These include but are not limited to:
- sudden changes in bank account or banking practice, including an unexplained withdrawal of large sums of money by a person accompanying the elder;
- the inclusion of additional names on an elder’s bank signature card;
- unauthorized withdrawal of the elder’s funds using the elder’s ATM card;
- abrupt changes in a will or other financial documents;
- unexplained disappearance of funds or valuable possessions;
- substandard care being provided or bills unpaid despite the availability of adequate financial resources;
- discovery of an elder’s signature being forged for financial transactions or for the titles of his/her possessions;
- sudden appearance of previously uninvolved relatives claiming their rights to an elder’s affairs and possessions;
- unexplained sudden transfer of assets to a family member or someone outside the family;
- the provision of services that are not necessary; and
- an elder’s report of financial exploitation.
You can visit the government’s site here for more information.