Psychologically Vulnerable Elders at Risk of Financial Exploitation

According to a new study, psychologically vulnerable seniors–those that have high depression scores and lower socioeconomic status–are more likely to experience financial elder abuse.

Researchers at Wayne State University teamed up with the Illinois Institute of Technology and studied 4,440 seniors who were considered potential victims for higher levels of financial fraud.

The study resulted in those with the highest levels of depression and lowest levels of social-needs fulfillment experienced higher levels of fraud. Overall, the psychologically vulnerable seniors were 226 percent more likely to experience this type of elder abuse.

The lead author of the study concluded that depressive symptoms and the lack of social-needs fulfillment do have an effect on fraud prediction.

Financial exploitation in seniors is on the rise. Scams and other financial abuse cost elderly Americans approximately $3 billion every year. It is recommended that elders be regularly assessed by clinicians for potential financial abuse, so that they are more aware of those looking to take advantage of them.

Elder Abuse Awareness

If you or a loved one has been a victim of elder abuse, contact Brayton Purcell for help with discovering your legal rights. We are committed to providing our clients with excellent representation and service, upholding to the highest ethical standards.

“Psychologically Vulnerable Seniors More Susceptible to Financial Exploitation, Study Finds.” ALFA: Creating the Future of Senior Living. Association Management Software – ESX Inc., 20 June 2013. Web. 27 June 2013. <,-Study-Finds>.

(photo by Dave Dugdale)