Spiralling house prices have led to an increase in incidences of elder abuse cases
The national Legal Aid chairman, Graham Hill, said an urgent investigation was needed into the abuse of elderly people who had been pressured to relinquish their family home by adult children who could not afford to enter the property market on their own.
Hill said prospective homebuyers battling to get a deposit together or struggling to qualify for a loan were increasingly turning to elderly parents for help.
In some cases, Hill said, adult children deny their elderly parents access to their grandchildren if they do not agree to guarantee their home loan or supply a deposit. In other cases, adult children threaten to move interstate, or move in with their elderly parents, unless a deposit can be supplied.
It was reported recently in The Telegraph that UK house prices are once again on the increase. It was reported that “The average house in Britain will be worth £220,000 this year – up £9,000 on 2016 levels – as the property shortage continues to drive values higher. New forecasts by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) predict a 4.4% rise in 2017.”In a related article in the Australian Guardian it has been found that there is a correlation between an increase in house prices and financial abuse. As house prices increase it becomes more and more difficult for first time buyers to get a foot on the property ladder. The report has discovered that elderly relatives are being pressured into selling their homes, and or providing cash for relatives who cannot get on the property ladder. This pressure often constitutes financial abuse and can lead to similar malpractice and breach of trust.Whilst the article is reported in the Australian press, with similar increases in UK house prices are the elderly at further risk of financial abuse?If you are concerned about a relative or a family member please do not hesitate to contact us for advice.