June 11, 2014
In recognition of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day on June 15, First Interstate Bank is helping stop financial abuse of elderly customers. Elder financial abuse is a crime that deprives senior citizens of their resources and independence. Financial exploitation of elders is a fast-growing form of abuse, and can involve trusted persons in the life of the vulnerable adult.
Senior citizens are targets for manipulation due to a number of factors. Persons over the age of 50 control 70% of the nation’s wealth, and often many elderly individuals have disabilities that make them dependent on others for help. Also, many seniors have predictable patters, such as receiving monthly checks or trips to the bank.
First Interstate employees are frequently trained to notice when a customer is vulnerable or a victim of financial abuse by paying attention to red flags, such as:
It is important to recognize these red flags when determining if a senior citizen has been taken advantage of. By being proactive, steps can be taken to prevent financial fraud. Here are some simple tips to adhere to:
If you or someone you know is a victim of financial mistreatment, report the abuse to the victim’s bank and enlist a banker’s help in stopping the abuse and preventing its recurrence. You may also contact Adult Protective Services or your local police to report any instances of elder abuse, financial or otherwise.
For more information, visit the National Committee to Prevent Elder Abuse and click on Financial Abuse.