Enduring Powers of Attorney and Financial Exploitation of Older People: A Conceptual Analysis and Strategies for Prevention.J Aging Soc Policy. 2019 Dec 17 [Online ahead of print]JA
Enduring powers of attorney (POAs) are commonly used legal instruments that enable older people to plan for asset management in the event of future incapacity. The policy objective of POAs - empowering control over money and property - are frustrated when POAs are misused to financially exploit older people. This commentary integrates theory and evidence to propose a conceptual framework for POA-facilitated financial exploitation (POA-FE). Identified risk factors include inadequate knowledge about the POA role; family conflicts; attitudes of entitlement; and lack of planning and preparation for financial decision-making. POA-FE occurs on a continuum of behavior and strategies for preventing POA-FE are suggested using strengths-based approaches for older people and their attorneys.