Every year, millions of seniors fall for a slew of financial scams. However, these situations can easily be prevented if they know what to watch for. Naples in-home elder care experts discuss a few of the most common scams your aging loved one should be wary of and what to do if he or she suspects a scam.
1. Bogus Overdue Utility Bills
Many scammers call seniors pretending to be a local utility company and demand immediate payment for an allegedly overdue bill. They usually ask for a credit card number, check, or money order. Make sure your loved one calls the utility company first and confirm his or her account’s standing before paying.
2. The Relative Emergency Con
Quite a few seniors receive calls or emails claiming that a relative needs money quickly. For instance, a scammer might pose as a legitimate grandchild’s roommate and request money for an unexpected expense. At the very minimum, your loved one should check with other relatives to verify the story.
3. Fake Charity Solicitations
Most older adults with a little money to spare don’t mind donating to a worthy cause. However, few actually research the charity before sending them cash. Your loved one should never provide financial information to charity workers over the phone, even if they supposedly represent a legitimate organization like UNICEF.
4. The Classic Pigeon Drop Scam
A pigeon drop is a way to solicit funds by promising a big future payout. Fraudsters call seniors to tell them they’ve won a cash prize but require an upfront payment to unlock funds. When calls like this come in, your loved one should just hang up the phone.
5. Healthcare-Related Schemes
A significant number of scammers pose as Medicare representatives and ask for social security numbers, birth dates, and addresses. They then use this data to facilitate identity theft. Encourage your loved one to verify the identity of Medicare employees before volunteering any personal information.
To learn more about protecting your loved one’s finances, reach out to Home Care Assistance. We are a leading provider of respite and live-in care, and we also offer specialized Parkinson’s, stroke, and dementia care Naples seniors can rely on. For more information and to request a free in-home consultation, please call one of our friendly Client Care Managers at (239) 449-4701 today.