ITV Tonight featured a disturbing report on financial abuse of the elderly - here's why...
Did you see this?
During my career, I've encountered many very disturbing cases of financial abuse targeting elderly people. Sometimes they fall victim to professional criminals but mostly the elderly person has had their life savings stolen by a close relative or friend.
ITV Tonight - Elderly Theft: Robbing the Relatives
On 30th November 2017 a programme was aired on ITV Tonight that featured a report on these types of financial abuse cases. The broadcast revealed an alarming increase in the number of abuse cases being uncovered by the police and being reported to charities such as Action on Elder Abuse. The stories featured in the programme were heartbreaking.
Unfortunately, the cases that are reported are just the tip of the iceberg. Many cases go unreported because the elderly person is too scared, or confused or embarrassed to reveal they have been a victim.
ITV Tonight interviewed members of the national organisation Solicitors For The Elderly (SFE). Members of SFE are lawyers who have specialist knowledge and training in issues affecting elderly people, including elder abuse.
I have been a member of Solicitors For The Elderly since the early years of its inception and was one of the first members to pass their accreditation test to become a Full Accredited Member.
The good news is that financial abuse of the elderly can be stopped and even better news, it can be prevented from happening in the first place.
By getting to know our clients and their families potential dangers can be spotted and appropriate safeguards built into the arrangements we help our clients to put in place.
We also offer training and support through our online service BE My Own Lawyer to people appointed as attorneys or deputies so they properly understand their roles and the limits of their authority and can avoid making mistakes that may lead to fraud.
We have information packs about making powers of attorney and our blog features many articles on these subjects.
Financial abuse occurs at all levels and across all social and economic sectors. It's highly likely that someone you know is suffering abuse right now or they might even be the perpetrator!
They might be your relative or friend or an employee or business contact.
So please would you think about sharing this email and let's fight abuse of the elderly together.
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