Elder Law of Louisville's Blog

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Elder Financial Abuse Checklist of Warning Signs

1. Enrollee's personal belongings, papers, or credit cards are missing; or there are signs of a break-in or vandalism on the premises.

2. Signatures on checks or legal documents that do not resemble enrollee's signature.

3. Frequent checks made out to "cash".

4. Enrollee appears truly fearful when questioned about another person's handling of the enrollee's finances.

5. Notice of eviction or foreclosure.

6. Notice to cut-off utilities or property tax past due.

7. Large number of credit cards to manage.

8. Numerous unpaid bills.

9. Purchase of home improvements that are more costly than appropriate for the home's value or enrollee's budget.

10. Enrollee owns home but no longer gets tax notice and doesn't know why.

11. Enrollee has signed blank legal or financial document "to be filled in later".

12. Problems with income taxes.

13. Enrollee has a trustee, conservator or representative payee AND enrollee's basic needs are not being met.

14. Enrollee signs on loan for another person.

15. Withdrawals from bank accounts or transfers that the enrollee cannot explain.

16. Unusual activity in the enrollee's bank accounts; such as large withdrawals, frequent transfers between accounts.

17. Explanations given about the enrollee 's finances don't make sense.

18. Enrollee has no documentation about financial arrangements.

19. The enrollee does not understand or know about financial arrangements that have been made for him or her.

20. Bank statements and canceled checks no longer come to the home, and enrollee does not know why.

21. Banking activities at new accounts at banks with which the enrollee has no prior connection.

22. A new person's name is added to a bank account and enrollee does not know why.

23. Frequent phone calls from charities or telemarketers.

24. Enrollee is spending money on sweepstakes, gambling games, psychics and other scams.

25. Relatives or caregivers, who were never involved before, suddenly appear and want to be very involved.

26. Enrollee is repeatedly solicited for un-prescribed "health services".

27. Telephone bill is unusually high.

28. Someone else controls the money and refuses to spend it on the enrollee.

29. Frequent or expensive gifts to a caregiver, friend, family or provider.

30. Someone else expresses too much interest in how much money is spent on the enrollee's care.

31. Enrollee is unaware of monthly income or recurring bills.

32. Legal documents suddenly appear, which the enrollee doesn't understand.

33. Enrollee or caregiver state that a contract exists for enrollee to pay for caregiver's services, especially if payment is a gift of the home.

34. Multiple visits by door-to-door salesmen.

35. New "best friends," or suspicious "sweetheart, including an improperly chummy or flirtatious provider.

36. Enrollee unaware of reason for upcoming appointment with banker or attorney.

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