Please warn your parents, grandparents, and any other older adult you know about people who are trying to scam them out of their money by using their grandchildren. The “grandparent scam” has been around for many years but it has been back in the news lately. This scam is a terrible act that abuses the love of a grandparent for a grandchild. Increasing knowledge of this crime is one of the best ways to avoid it from happening to someone you love.
What Is The Grandparent Scam?
The scam is quite simple. The telephone rings and a person on the other end of the line says something like, “Hello Grandma” or “Hello papa.” The person claims to be your grandchild who is in terrible trouble and needs help immediately. The story may be different, but the request is the same — “send money now because I need help.” The scam may involve more than one person, such as someone playing the role of an attorney, police officer, or another person who tries to convince the grandparent of the urgency to send money.
Examples of things a person may say to a grandparent when trying to scam him or her out of money include, but are not limited to:
- I have been arrested and need to pay my attorney to get out of jail.
- I need to post bail money because I was wrongfully arrested.
- I have been in an accident and need a rental car or money for medical bills.
- I was on a trip, and all my property and cash were stolen.
- My home was broken into (or I was mugged), and my credit cards and cash was stolen.
The scenarios are endless, but the result is the same, a grandparent’s emotions are being taken advantage of for the purpose of scamming the person out of hundreds or even thousands of dollars.
How Do Scam Artists Pull Off the Grandparent Scam?
Scam artists are very creative. Many times, they have someone with them to play the role of a judge, police officer, attorney, doctor, or another person of “authority” to help convince the grandparent of the extreme urgency of the request. Scam artists scour social media websites and obituaries to gain information they can use to make their scam more believable. In addition, many calls come very early in the morning, late at night, or during the night when the person may be tired or not fully awake and focused.
It is crucial to discuss financial scams with elderly family members and friends to prevent them from being taken advantage of by a scam artist. Provide grandparents with current contact information for all family members and encourage them to contact a family member before sending any money or giving any personal or financial information to a caller. Also, discuss various ways of contact so your loved one understands it may be an email, social media message, or another form of contact.
Always report scam attempts, including a grandparent scam, to local authorities and the FBI.
Call a Louisville Elder Abuse Attorney for More Information
If you suspect elder abuse or neglect, contact our office for more information. Our Louisville elder abuse attorneys offer free consultations for victims and their families. Contact the Shelton Law Group by calling 1-888-761-7204 or by using our online contact form.