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Jul 19, 2022 by |

San Francisco Financial Elder Abuse Attorney: Older LGBTQ Adults May Be More Vulnerable To Financial Elder Abuse And Fraud

ATTORNEY NEWSLETTER

Isolation And Economic Insecurity 

History Of Discrimination

Consumers lost more than $5.8 billion to financial elder abuse and fraud last year, up 70 percent from 2020, according to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).  While anyone of any age can be victimized by financial abuse, some groups may be more vulnerable to these crimes than others. In particular, some elder advocates believe that older members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) community are particularly vulnerable to financial abuse. The chief program officer at SAGE, an organization that provides services and support for older LGBTQ people recently stated that older members of the LGBTQ community throughout the country are increasingly victims of what he called “horrible fraud and abuse.”  If you or a loved one is a victim of elder or dependent adult abuse or neglect in San Francisco or elsewhere in California call us today at (415)441-8669. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267).

Isolated And Wary Of Authorities

In a newly released AARP survey of 2,004 LGBTQ Americans 45 and older, 8 in 10 said they are not sure they will have adequate family or social supports in their later years. And more than half of respondents (52 percent) said they felt left out, lacked companionship or felt lonely.  By comparison, only about a quarter of the broader 50-plus population reported such feelings.  Many older LGBTQ people are estranged from their biological families so lack a traditional source of caregiving support that many older adults rely on. They are twice as likely to live alone and four times less likely to have children than average, according to SAGE, and often have experience of discrimination that can make them less likely to reach out to senior centers, meal programs and other support services.

Adding to the difficulties for the LGBTQ community, older LGBTQ Americans might not feel as though they can turn to the authorities to report fraud. Many in the community came of age in a time when homosexuality was illegal, so law enforcement was not who you went to if there was a problem.  Many established community senior centers have only recently become more welcoming the LGBTQ seniors.  Community resources have tended to make LGBTQ individuals feel unwelcome in the past in many communities.

And isolation is closely tied to loneliness, fueling a desire for connection that can lead many to seek out companionship on social media and dating apps, or allow new strangers to enter their life and take an inordinate interest in their affairs.  These kind of new relatio0nships formed out of loneliness can be very dangerous as an older person begins to lose cognition and be unable to monitor their own affairs.

Contact Us

If you have an older loved one, friend or neighbor who is an older LGBTQ  person be especially aware of the risks they face as they age.  Help them by monitoring their bank accounts.  Accompany them to any business meeting they may have, such as for a proposed annuity, life insurance or investment.  Never, ever allow your loved one or friend to give a caregiver or other new person in their life a Power of Attorney, credit card, or a blank check.  Stay involved in any senior loved one’s life so a stranger does not have the opportunity for this kind of theft and exploitation.  If you sense any kind of abuse of an older loved one, call us right away.  Ingrid M. Evans has years of experience in representing seniors and their families against abusers of any kind, including in-home caregivers.  You can reach us at (415) 441-8669, or by email at info@evanslaw.com. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267).

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