Financial abuse is the most common abuse of elder abuse and is the use of a person’s money in a fraudulent way and without their consent or awareness.
The Canadian Securities Administrators is launching a campaign this month, which is aimed at family, friends and caregivers of older adults. People are being encouraged to reach out to older adults in their lives to discuss their financial health and to make them aware of the ways that fraudsters can attempt to defraud them of their money.
Older adults are often the target of these scammers as they may be living alone, or suffering a decline of cognitive abilities or afraid to ask for assistance for fear it may have a negative impact on their independence.
As friends, family members and caregivers of older adults we need to be watching for the signs of financial abuse. According to the CSA:
Canadians can take action and prevent financial abuse of seniors by:
- Talking about their financial matters with them.
- Learning to recognize and avoid investment scams. Visit the CSA website to find important information and helpful resources about fraud prevention.
- Taking time to investigate every investment opportunity or sales pitch, as well as the person promoting the investment, before handing over money. If you’re unsure about an investment, consider seeking out independent, third-party advice.
- Reporting investment fraud to their provincial or territorial securities regulator. Reporting potential scams may help prevent other seniors from becoming victims of investment fraud.
More information is available here.