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Red Flags for Financial Scams

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While financial fraud can happen to anyone, older adults are especially at risk. Corrupt individuals know that many older people have worked hard for years and accumulated significant wealth. They are often preyed on because they may not be as savvy as younger consumers or have mental impairments that affect their judgment. We want to prevent you and your loved ones from becoming victims to these crimes.

Check out these red flags to look for so you are prepared to defend yourself from fraud:

You’re confused about the product being sold – If you don’t understand the financial product you are being pitched, don’t buy it. It is important to understand the risks, benefits and costs of any purchase. One common scam is on variable annuities. Seniors often don’t understand the fine print, like high annual expenses and withdrawal feeds. If you have concerns about a product or need help understanding the details, talk to a financial expert at MBT Bank.

The advisor has a lot of useless credentials – Anyone can call themselves a financial advisor and will add fancy credentials to their name. Designations like Certified Financial Planner or Certified Financial Analyst are legitimate and signal that the individual has training and expertise. However, others require little training and are essentially meaningless. Do some research about the credentials that your advisor claims to have.

You’re offered “free” advice – Invitations to free dinners and financial seminars are often just a sales pitch. While it is fine to attend these events, be aware that the ultimate goal is probably to sell you a product or service. If you are interested in the presenter’s offers, research it on your own and contact the advisor if you want to pursue it.

We want to do everything we can to protect the people in the communities we serve, both young and old. If you are leery of offers that you or your loved one is receiving, talk to someone you can trust at MBT Bank.