They say that the love of money is the root of all evil. Unfortunately for many of our senior citizens, this evil is targeting more and more of them. With a world moving at the speed of light and a mind ever slowing, many of our seniors find themselves needing an advocate to care for their financial concerns. Here is where many of them find trouble.
When an elderly individual is incapacitated (temporarily or permanently), they will need to find an individual to act on their behalf in financial matters. Typically, this role includes duties such as paying the bills, dealing with taxes, managing property, etc. The ability to deal with these issues is conferred by a document called a Financial Power of Attorney. This document gives the individual named the ability to manage financial issues in the elderly individual’s name.
The trouble comes when the individual imbued with Financial Power of Attorney uses the document for personal profit rather than stewardship. Many scammers will drain bank accounts, transfer properties, and much more all under the guise of caring for the individual. These scams can leave the individual destitute and betrayed.
If you or a loved one have faced Financial Power of Attorney scams, the best course of action is to contact an attorney immediately. Money can be hard to trace, and these cases can be very difficult to reach satisfactory results, but in most cases, early detection and action is vital to success.
The two most common charges leveled in cases of Financial Power of Attorney scams are Breach of fiduciary duty and conversion. Breach of fiduciary duty claims that the agent’s actions went against the good of the elder, and broke the contractual duty bestowed by the Power of Attorney. Conversion claims the transfer of an elder’s property to the agent for the agent’s benefit.
Trust your instincts. If something doesn’t seem quite right, its definitely worth a little investigation. Ask questions. The more resistance you find, the more your instincts may be correct. Press charges if necessary, and make sure you or your loved one is fully protected.