Have you been a victim of elder fraud? After the horse has bolted the barn, is there anything you can do?
First, you can correct inaccurate information on your credit reports. Get free credit reports from Equifax, Experian and TransUnion at www.annualcreditreport.com. Review them carefully. If anything is wrong, send a letter by certified mail, return receipt requested, asking for a 90 day fraud alert. Consider requesting a credit freeze.
Second, file suit under the Texas Business Code (Section 521.101) so that you can officially be declared a victim of identity theft.
Then contact every creditor by certified mail, return receipt requested. Ask for letters stating that they have closed any fraudulent account. Keep a log.
File a report with the police.
File a report with the Federal Trade Commission.
You can mitigate the damage – and perhaps make yourself a less attractive target in the future.
Read more here for ways to protect yourself from fraud: Still Clowning Around? Protect Yourself From Fraud or Telecom and Utility Fraud: Is that Bill Yours?
Elder law attorney, Terry Garrett, is a member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys and is active in the Texas and Austin Bar Associations. She graduated with honors from Cornell University. She was on the Dean’s List at Wharton Business School. She earned her J.D. at Columbia Law School, receiving the Parker Award and a Mellon Fellowship.
She assists families of people with special needs, people planning for the retirement years and people administering estates.