Help advisors protect you from fraud
Worried about your ability to manage financial matters as you age? Concerned about your parents or another loved one? One way to help protect yourself against scams or fraud is to authorize your advisors to contact someone if they have concerns.
An attorney is obligated to take protective action if they believe a client lacks sufficient capacity to make adequately considered decisions. Such actions could include consulting with family members, pausing action to allow an improvement in the client’s condition, deferring to durable powers of attorney, or engaging protective agencies.
In taking protective measures, an attorney’s actions are guided by the client’s best interests and what they know of the client’s intentions and values. That creates an opportunity for you to make your wishes known.
You can pre-authorize lawyers and financial planners to contact a trusted representative if they’re concerned about your decision-making capabilities. A “letter of diminishing capacity” spells out what you would like your advisors to do if they have concerns.
Here are some other proactive steps you can take to protect yourself or loved ones:
- Use monitoring software to detect unusual activity in banking and other financial accounts. True Link Financial, Eversafe, and Carefull are some of the emerging services you can use to help monitor a loved one’s financial activity.
- Talk with your financial advisor about setting up a fraud protection plan.
- Monitor your credit at least once a year to be sure no one is opening false accounts using your identity.
- Update your power of attorney. If you become incapacitated, that allows a trusted individual you name to communicate with financial service providers.