Could Your Parent Be a Victim of Identity Theft?
July 17, 2018It is an unfortunate reality that elderly adults are more vulnerable to fraudulent activity such as identity theft than younger people. This is due to a variety of factors, including the fact that many elderly adults are not familiar with technology and may make unsafe decisions, are more likely to be trusting than younger adults, and may also be dealing with cognitive functioning decline that prevents them from being able to use proper judgment in unsafe situations. As a family caregiver, it is extremely important for you to be vigilant about your elderly adult's identity so you can detect when they may have become a victim of identity theft. This can help you to end and resolve the situation as quickly and effectively as possible to minimize the damage done by this type of crime.Some signs that may indicate your aging parent has become a victim of identity theft include:
- Unexplained or unfamiliar withdrawals from their bank account.
- Bills that stop arriving with the mail without you having signed up for paperless billing.
- Debt collectors calling your parents for debts they cannot explain, or that do not sound familiar to you.
- Checks or credit cards being rejected by stores and other services.
- Disconnect notices or warnings on bills that do not look familiar, or that should have been paid.
- Health insurance filing a claim for a condition or procedure not related to your senior.
- The health plan refusing to cover treatment or other benefits because it says they have reached your parents benefit limit when they have not.
- Notices from the IRS saying your parent has filed two returns.