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Self-advocacy toolkit

What you need to know for better aged care

Self-advocacy or speaking up means having the right information to get the care and support you need. Explore the topics below to start.

Home Self-advocacy toolkit Protecting yourself from harm Financial abuse

Financial abuse

Financial abuse is the theft or misuse of an older person’s money, assets or property. It includes moving into the home of an older person without their consent, failing to contribute to household costs and forcing, coercing or misleading an older person into signing paperwork concerning loans, property, wills or powers of attorney. It may also include forcing an older person to use their aged care funding or home care package inappropriately.

According to Aged Discrimination Commissioner Kay Patterson, there are six key risk factors

  • a family member having a strong sense of entitlement to an older person’s property or possessions, often due to financial pressures in their own life
  • an older person having diminished capacity
  • an older person being dependent on a family member for care
  • a family member having a drug or alcohol problem
  • an older person feeling frightened of a family member
  • an older person lacking awareness of their rights and entitlements.

Documents and external links

Learn more about financial abuse. These documents and websites offer help, strategies, and practical information. Brief descriptions are provided for each document or link.

Protecting yourself from financial abuse

View this helpful resource from Compass outlining the nine steps you can take to protect yourself from financial abuse.

Financial elder abuse and the importance of enduring documents

The Hon Dr Kay Patterson AO explores the key risk factors in financial elder abuse and the importance of enduring documents that reflect an older person’s wishes.

Financial abuse in-language resources

Financial abuse in-language resources. View Seniors Rights Service (OPAN’s NSW member) audio and video resources on financial elder abuse produced in Hindi, Arabic, Mandarin and Cantonese as well as English.

Home care - know your consumer rights

Read the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) leaflet on understanding your rights when you receive a home care package, in English and other languages.

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