Taking advantage of anybody is despicable, but it is especially so when that person is vulnerable. Unfortunately that is exactly what's happening as more and more elderly are becoming victims of financial fraud, making independent living more difficult.
According to the Washington Post, a pair of newly released studies revealed that 7.3 million Americans over the age of 65 have been victimized to the tune of $2.6 billion a year by opportunistic con men.
"With the present state of the economy, older Americans are at a greater risk than ever of having their financial security threatened," Sandra Timmermann, director of MetLife's Mature Market Institute, told the news source
In order to combat the growing presence of financial fraud, the Investor Protection Trust established the Elder Investment Fraud and Financial Exploitation project. The initiative teaches assisted living professionals to learn the signs that a senior citizen may be being financially abused - even by a relative.
According to MSNBC.com, signs can include sudden changes in bank practice, uncharacteristic and unexplained withdrawls of large sums of money and abrupt changes in wills or other financial documents.