Detection and prevention of financial abuse against elders

Harries, P. A., Davies, M. L., Gilhooly, K. J., Gilhooly, M. L.M. and Cairns, D. (2013) Detection and prevention of financial abuse against elders. Journal of Financial Crime, 21(1), pp. 84-99. (doi: 10.1108/JFC-05-2013-0040)

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Purpose: This paper reports on banking and finance professionals' decision making in the context of elder financial abuse. The aim was to identify the case features that influence when abuse is identified and when action is taken. Design/methodology/approach: Banking and finance professionals (n=70) were shown 35 financial abuse case scenarios and were asked to judge how certain they were that the older person was being abused and the likelihood of taking action. Findings: Three case features significantly influenced certainty of financial abuse: the nature of the financial problem presented, the older person's level of mental capacity and who was in charge of the client's money. In cases where the older person was more confused and forgetful, there was increased suspicion that financial abuse was taking place. Finance professionals were less certain that financial abuse was occurring if the older person was in charge of his or her own finances Originality/value: The research findings have been used to develop freely available online training resources to promote professionals' decision making capacity ( The resources have been advocated for use by Building Societies Association as well as CIFAS, the UK's Fraud Prevention Service.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Cairns, Professor Deborah
Authors: Harries, P. A., Davies, M. L., Gilhooly, K. J., Gilhooly, M. L.M., and Cairns, D.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Health & Wellbeing > Mental Health and Wellbeing
Journal Name:Journal of Financial Crime
Publisher:Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2013 The Authors
First Published:First published in Journal of Financial Crime 21(1):84-99
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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