In this 45 minute program, host Dr. Rachel Geller, Ed.D. and guests Kendra Cooper (MA Attorney/Educator) and Jane Krieger (Personal Representative) discuss the problem of financial exploitation of elders, citing specific examples and patterns followed by some abusers.
Considering how disabilities or mental confusion can be misdiagnosed as “dementia” rather than “delirium” caused by underlying infection, medication interactions, dehydration or diet, the participants emphasize the importance of regularly obtaining medical records and second opinions from medical providers. Sometimes evaluations are conducted without consideration of physical disabilities like hearing or vision. Deemed “not of capacity” and drugged, elders can lose their civil rights through guardianships, powers of attorney or healthcare proxies. Groups of people and entities may target elders and work together to control them. “Sweetheart scammers” befriend lonely, vulnerable elderly people, gain their trust and then use isolation and undue influence to benefit financially. When an elder’s usefulness has passed and their assets are depleted by financial exploiters, the elderly often perish while abusers move on to the next victims.
With 10,000 residents turning 62 every day nationally, Episode 12 emphasizes the need for the training of law enforcement, protective services and the courts in financial exploitation. Discussion includes references to the 2014 MA Legislative Commission Report on Elder Protective Services and the 2015 Maine Attorney General Final Report on Financial Exploitation of Elders. More recently, the October 2017 Federal Elder Abuse Prevention and Prosecution Act (EAAPA) contains provisions for the training of FBI and federal prosecutors in financial exploitation of elders.
Q&A Episode 12 “Elder Exploitation: Follow the Money” will be shown on RCTV Comcast 9 and Verizon 31at the following times:
Mondays 12 Noon, Tuesdays at 5:00 PM, Wednesdays 7:30 PM, Thursdays 7:30 PM, Fridays 12 Noon, Saturdays 10:00 AM, and Sundays 1:00 PM.