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Elder Fraud & Abuse

OVC Elder Fraud & Abuse Initiatives

The Office for Victims of Crime and the U.S. Department of Justice are committed to ensuring that older Americans have access to victim services so that they can experience a sense of security, peace of mind, and the support of their community.

The Office for Victims of Crime manages the following programs that provide services for victims of elder fraud and abuse.

Victims of Crime Act Formula Grants

Victims of Crime Act Formula grants fund crime victim compensation and victim assistance, which is awarded through subgrants to state/local agencies and local service providers.

These subgrants support direct services to crime victims in every state, territory, and Washington, D.C. More than 5,540 VOCA-funded organizations provided services ranging from individual advocacy, crisis intervention, and therapy to civil legal assistance, transportation, and emergency shelter to over 357,500 victims ages 60 and older in Fiscal Year (FY) 2019.

In FY 2019, crime victim compensation programs paid 1,430 compensation claims related to elder abuse or neglect.

In 2016, the new Victims of Crime Act Formula Victim Assistance Rule clarified and expanded states’ allowable uses of victim assistance funding. With this clarification, states were able to identify more ways to support all victims, including victims of elder abuse. View examples of state and local elder abuse programs supported with Victims of Crime formula funding.
 

Field-Generated Innovations in Addressing Elder Financial Exploitation

In collaboration with the U.S. Department of Justice's Elder Justice Initiative, the Office for Victims of Crime funded six national organizations around the country under the Field-Generated Innovations in Addressing Elder Financial Exploitation program. The grantees are working to help identify and remedy elder financial exploitation through innovative collaborations between the financial industry and other entities in order to better detect and respond to victims.

These grantees developed a series of resources to help elder justice professionals to optimize their response to elder abuse, neglect, and financial exploitation. Visit the Resources for Elder Justice Professionals section of the U.S. Department of Justice's Elder Justice Initiative website to view these videos, training guides, and other resources.
 

Transforming America’s Response to Elder Abuse: Enhanced Multidisciplinary Teams (E-MDTs) for Older Victims of Abuse and Financial Exploitation

In collaboration with the U.S. Department of Justice's Elder Justice Initiative, in FY 2019 the Office for Victims of Crime funded 13 organizations totaling $4.9 million dollars under the Transforming America’s Response to Elder Abuse: Enhanced Multidisciplinary Teams (E-MDTs) for Older Victims of Abuse and Financial Exploitation solicitation. The focus of these awards is the development and/or enhancement of E-MDTs to better identify and respond to cases of abuse and more comprehensively serve and support victims of elder abuse and financial exploitation. 

The Office for Victims of Crime provided and an additional $2.2 million in funding to support the development of the National Elder Abuse Training and Technical Assistance Center to help strengthen the capacity of these E-MDTs. 
 

Field Generated Tribal and Non-Tribal Program to Improve Services for Victims of Crime Program: Purpose Area 2 - Innovations in Telehealth

The Office for Victims of Crime awarded funds to the New York City Department for the Aging, in partnership with Weill Cornell Institute of Geriatric Psychiatry, under the Field Generated Tribal and Non-Tribal Program to Improve Services for Victims of Crime Program: Purpose Area 2 - Innovations in Telehealth program.

This project will deliver an internationally recognized, evidence-based mental health intervention to elder abuse victims and victims of crimes committed by strangers, who screen positive for depression. This program offers a psychotherapy treatment program using a secure internet platform to efficiently communicate with older victims remotely.
 

Enhancing Services for Older Victims of Abuse and Financial Exploitation

In FY 2020, the Office for Victims of Crime released the Enhancing Services for Older Victims of Abuse and Financial Exploitation solicitation. Under this program, grantees will implement projects intended to improve outcomes, minimize additional trauma, and restore safety and security to older adult victims of abuse and financial exploitation.
 

Training for Law Enforcement to Improve Identification of and Response to Elder Fraud Victims

The National White Collar Crime Center received nearly $2 million under the Training for Law Enforcement to Improve Identification of and Response to Elder Fraud Victims program. The National White Collar Crime Center will work with the International Association of Chiefs of Police to identify current training, tools and practices being used to address elder fraud. The project will study current resources and responses to elder fraud in a rural and an urban jurisdiction in two of the Transnational Elder Fraud Strike Force districts.

The National White Collar Crime Center will also develop and deliver trainings to improve law enforcement's response to elder fraud tailored to the particular needs of different types of jurisdictions. The trainings will be tested, evaluated, and revised as needed and then made available to rural and urban law enforcement agencies nationwide.
 

Transforming America's Response to Elder Abuse: Mobilizing Attorneys for Older Victims of Abuse & Financial Exploitation

The Transforming America's Response to Elder Abuse: Mobilizing Attorneys for Older Victims of Abuse & Financial Exploitation program mobilizes 22 Fellows across the country to address the gap in civil legal services for victims of elder abuse and exploitation, with a special emphasis in serving rural communities. Fellows work with victims of elder abuse and exploitation to enforce their rights and address issues such as financial exploitation, housing, protection orders, and make referrals to other supportive services.

The fellowship program is operated by Equal Justice Works with funding support from the Office for Victims of Crime.
 

National Elder Fraud Hotline

To help combat fraud against older Americans and provide services to victims, the Office for Victims of Crime manages the National Elder Fraud Hotline. If you or someone you know is a victim of elder fraud, we encourage you to call the hotline at 833–FRAUD–11 (833–372–8311).

Date Created: November 24, 2020