Financial Elder Fraud & Abuse

Financial elder abuse is an issue that affects hundreds of thousands of individuals in the elderly community each year. In an effort to try and combat elder financial abuse and educate all women about this devastating problem, WISER compiled a list of helpful resources and links below.

Signs that someone may be a victim: 

  • Failure to pay bills
  • Failure to buy food or medication
  • Large amounts of money withdrawn or transferred
  • Missing personal property or belongings
  • Isolation of the elder from friends or family
How can you help?
  • Be aware! It can happen to anyone.
  • Pay attention! Look for signs of financial abuse among your family and friends.
  • Educate seniors! Make sure they know financial abuse risks and what to look for.
  • Involve others! Advise older adults to contact caregiver support groups if they need help.
  • Stay knowledgeable! Learn about your community’s resources.
  • Report! If there are any signs of wrong doing, immediately file a police report. 


For more information, check out WISER's 8 briefs on elder financial abuse developed with the National Adult Protective Services Association (NAPSA). Each brief covers a different topic to help you and those you care about stay financially protected.

Senior Financial Fraud & Abuse  /  Spanish

Identity Theft and Credit Card Fraud  /  Spanish

Healthcare Scams  /  Spanish

Reverse Mortgage Scams  /  Spanish

Annuity and Living Trusts Scams  /  Spanish

Deed Theft and Foreclosure Rescue Scams  /  Spanish

Power of Attorney Abuse  /  Spanish 

Undue Influence  /  Spanish


Materials available from WISER and SIFMA:

Be WISER About Financial Scams

A Checklist to Help You Protect Those You Care About from Elder Financial Abuse  

Protecting Your Income: Tips for Seniors

WISER Special Report on Senior Fraud:
Sweetheart or Sweetheart Scam? What you should know about financial abuse and elder scams


Toolkit Available!  Savvy Saving Seniors: Steps to Avoiding Scams
WISER, in partnership with the National Council on Aging and with support from the Bank of America Charitable Foundation, has developed a toolkit to help educate seniors on how they can protect themselves against financial fraud. Older adults represent 12% of the U.S. population, but make up 35% of all fraud victims. The Savvy Saving Seniors: Steps to Avoiding Scams toolkit includes:

  • PowerPoint presentation
  • Training guide
  • Participant handbook
  • Facilitator Evaluation Form
  • Participant Evaluation Form
  • Webinar on how to facilitate a workshop


Click here to view the toolkit and download materials from the NCOA website.



AARP's Fraud Watch Network
The AARP Fraud Watch Network provides information about how to protect yourself and your loved ones.  You can sign up for Watchdog alerts, stay up on con artists' latest tricks, and find out what to do if you or someone you know has been victimized.

Elder Justice: Stronger Federal Leadership Could Enhance National Response to Elder Abuse
Included in this report are statistics on indiviudal state incidences of elder abuse and the wide range of financial elder abuse that exists throughout the country

Elder Abuse: A Women's Issue 
WISER featured in OWL's Mother's Day Report on Elder Financial Abuse (2009)

California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform (CANHR)

Through direct advocacy, community education, legislation and litigation, CANHR’s goal is to educate and support long term care consumers and advocates regarding the rights and remedies under the law. 

The National Long-Term Ombudsmen Resource Center
The Center developed consumer fact sheets with a grant from the Administration on Aging for the National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA). These sheets discuss the prevention, detection and reporting of financial exploitation in assisted living and nursing homes. 

Other WISER Resources

Predatory Lending

WISER's Too Good to Be True Checklist


For additional information on financial fraud and abuse click here.

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