The Grandma Scam
By Rick Law, estate planning and elder law Attorney. Rick Law and his daughter Attorney Diana Law are part of the multi-generational firm of the Estate Planning Center at Law Elder Law in Aurora, IL. Another common scam is for the scammer to call an elderly woman up and say, “Hi grandma, this is your favorite granddaughter.” The senior responds, “Oh, is this Kim?” Now the scammer has the senior on the hook and can reel her in. The scammer proceeds to tell the senior, “I am going to a wedding in Niagara Falls and I got into this car accident and I need money.” Or “Grandma, I’ve been arrested for drug charges. I know it doesn’t sound like me because I have a cold, the guy next to me on the plane had a cold and I caught it. I took Nyquil and that’s why I have drugs in my system. Grandma, I need you to send money or they’ll put me in jail, and please don’t tell my parents!” The scammer then instructs the senior to get a green dot MoneyPak and put money on the card and to await the call back. If the senior pays the court costs, the scammers will probably make up another reason that they need more money and will continue to take the senior’s money until the senior runs out of money or figures out it’s a scam. Fortunately, education does help. Cherie Aschenbrenner, an elder-service officer with the Elgin (Illinois) Police Department, was happy to get a call from one of the seniors who heard Aschenbrenner’s seminar on avoiding financial exploitation and was able to use that knowledge to defeat a scammer. The senior was the intended victim of the grandma scam, but instead of running to Wal-Mart to put money on a green dot MoneyPak, she called her son and asked if her granddaughter was in Niagara Falls. When the scammer called back, she was able to say, “I know this is a scam because my granddaughter is home.” Sadly, Aschenbrenner estimates that this scam probably works 50 percent of the time. Too many families needlessly lose everything they have. Don’t let that be you. If you need help building a fortress around your estate to protect it from creditors, predators, and the cost of chronic disease, give our office a call at 800-310-3100. Your first consultation is absolutely free. We’ll let you know what steps you need to take, right now, to protect yourself and your family. Call now, because when you’re out of money, you’re out of options! Sincerely, Rick L. Law, Attorney, Estate Planner for Retirees. Rick has been named the #1 Illinois elder law estate planning attorney for the past 8 years in a row by Leading Lawyer Magazine. He has been quoted in the Wall Street Journal, AARP Magazine, TheStreet.com, and numerous newspapers and articles. Rick is the lead attorney for Law Elder Law, LLP, focusing in Estate Planning, Guardianship, and Nursing Home Solutions. His goal is to give retirees an informed edge when it comes to dealing with an uncertain future. Get flexible retirement strategies that work during good times and bad, plus information on how you can save your home and assets from being used to pay for long term care. Call 800-310-3100 for your free consultation now!