Elder abuse - help your family hold on to their money
A recent Stuff article reminded us about how invasive and destroying elder abuse can be. Read more here about the 92 year old who was 'cleaned out' of $500,000 - ‘She cleaned him out’: Family seek answers after 92-year-old ‘left with nothing’
Elder abuse can be physical and or financial. It can be psychological, sexual, institutional or arise from neglect. Over 10% of over 65s living in our community experience abuse, but only 1 in 14 abuse incidences are reported, enabling action to be taken.
As financial advisers we have a responsibility to monitor any vulnerabilities with our clients and to raise concerns with our clients and if necessary with other people if we consider that there is some kind of abuse being perpetrated.
Age Concern have the following comments:
Elder abuse can reduce the person’s independence, self-esteem, confidence, and safety, especially if the person is dependent on others. However, it can be hard for older people to talk about their abuse when it happens for a variety of reasons. Some of the reasons an older person may not talk about abuse include:
They depend on the abuser for support
They have low self-confidence and self-esteem
They don't want to make a fuss
They are afraid that if they complain the abuse will get worse
They are isolated, so that it is difficult for them to tell anyone
They do not know who to tell or how to get help
They have dementia or an illness prevents them from telling anyone
They blame themselves for the abuse
They are ashamed that the abuser is a family/whānau member
Confidential Age Concern Elder Abuse Services can be found throughout the country, and you can find the contact details for your local support here.