Friday, May 22, 2015

Is There A Role for Mediation in Prevention of Financial Abuse of Older People?

In the May 2015 issue of Conflict Resolution Quarterly, four authors use quantitative and qualitative data collected in Australia to identify risk factors for the financial abuse of older people by a family member, analyze the potential usefulness of mediation as a strategy to prevent this form of elder abuse, and to identify knowledge and skills important to mediators facing potential financial abuse.

The authors note that mediation is in the early stages of consideration as a strategic tool for combating financial elder abuse, and thus much of their report focuses on "potential" risks or benefits of mediation, rather than instances of its use.  Nonetheless their study leads to interesting conclusions, including:

Potential advantages:

(1) enhancing the rights and wishes of older people,

(2) opening and facilitating communication between family members and older persons,

(3) enhancing accountability and responsibility of family members, and

(4) reducing family conflict.

The authors also identify potential concerns, including:

(1) it may be hard to get families to commit to the process or to see value in prevention,

(2) family members could misuse the financial and other information provided in the mediation, and,

(3) the current generation of older people may feel uncomfortable discussing financial matters with family members.

For more, see Elder Mediation and the Financial Abuse of Older People by a Family Member, by Dale Bagshaw (School of Psychology, Social Work and Social Policy at University of South Australia), Valerie Adams (project researcher in social sciences), Lana Zannettino (School of Nursing at Flinders University) and Sarah Wendt (School of Psychology, Social Work and Social Policy at University of South Australia).

Special thanks to Dickinson Law Librarian Gail Partin for this item!

 

 

https://lawprofessors.typepad.com/elder_law/2015/05/is-there-a-role-for-mediation-in-prevention-of-financial-abuse-of-older-people.html

Consumer Information, Current Affairs, Elder Abuse/Guardianship/Conservatorship, Ethical Issues, International | Permalink

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