Investment scammers tend to target elderly people, who may live with cognitive impairment or are simply too trusting of people who call them on their home phones. According to the North American Securities Administrators Association, nearly half of all investment fraud targets are seniors, and that number is on the rise. Aging adults tend to have more disposable income and are more likely to want to help someone they think is in need. How can you protect your aging loved one from falling prey to fraud or theft? Here are some tips to avoid getting caught in one of the many financial traps targeting the older generation.
Don’t Make Decisions without All the Information
If someone calls asking for money to fund the construction of a building for a good cause, ask for financial information about the group. After conducting these interviews and reviewing the data, bring this information to an attorney or financial advisor who may be able to verify its authenticity.
The “grandparent scam” is another common scheme where someone calls a senior and asks, “Hi, Grandma, do you know who this is?” Once the aging adult responds with a name, the scammer uses that information to continue the conversation, eventually requesting money be sent via Western Union or MoneyGram to help him or her solve an urgent crisis. In this case, your loved one can hang up and call his or her grandchild’s number to verify the person who was calling is in fact not who he or she claimed to be.
Visit ncoa.org and search for “Top 10 Scams Targeting Seniors” for a more thorough review of what aging adults and their caregivers should be on the lookout for. A caregiver or family member can make a list of these common scams and leave it next to his or her loved one’s phone.
In addition to being susceptible to scams, seniors can face a variety of other challenges as they age. If your elderly loved one needs help maintaining a high quality of life while aging in place, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a trusted provider of at-home care. Our caregivers provide transportation to and from medical appointments and social events, nutritious meal preparation, assistance with daily exercise, and help with everyday tasks like bathing, grooming, and light housekeeping.
Don’t Give Away Any Information
Seniors are urged to never give up their bank account numbers, credit card numbers, or social security numbers. No bank will ever ask for that information over the phone, and if a scammer receives this information, he or she could make withdrawals from your loved one’s account without permission. Asking for personal information is always a glaring red flag.
From avoiding scams to performing basic housekeeping tasks, older adults may need help with an array of tasks. Some seniors need occasional assistance at home, and oftentimes the family members who take care of them need time away to run errands, take a nap, go to work, or take a vacation. Montgomery respite care experts from Home Care Assistance are available on an as-needed basis, giving your family peace of mind that your loved one will remain safe and comfortable while you relax or focus on other important responsibilities.
Run Away if It Sounds Too Enticing
If something sounds too good to be true, there’s a good chance it is. Someone who asks your loved one to invest in a fund promising a 20 percent return is probably ripping your loved one off. In general, a good return on an investment is less than 10 percent per year over a long-term period. Seniors should always ask third parties for advice on any investment opportunity before investing and make sure they never give up sensitive personal information.
Protection from scams isn’t the only thing older adults need to enjoy a high quality of life. Living alone at home in the golden years can present a few unique challenges. Trust Montgomery home care professionals to help your senior loved one maintain a higher quality of life while he or she manages an illness and performs the daily tasks of living. Home Care Assistance will work with you to customize a care plan that’s just right for your loved one’s needs. Call one of our friendly Care Managers today at (334) 593-3988 to learn more about our customized care plans.