Helpful Tips, Quick Tips

Want Eternal Peace – Avoid Scams After Loss of Loved Ones

October 7, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

My Beloved by jkbarath | Flickr.comThe loss of a loved one is never an easy experience for any family, and people can be understandably distracted and overwhelmed during these times. Unfortunately, scam artists tend to capitalize on people when they’re most vulnerable. Some even use the obituaries in the newspaper as a way to target potential victims. Here are some tips to help you or your loved ones avoid scams during times of loss.

Protect Your Home

If funeral service dates and locations are listed in the newspaper obituary, scam artists will be able to tell when you will be away from home. And with friends and relatives visiting to pay their respects, neighbors may assume someone entering your house has permission to do so. To be safe, either ask a friend or neighbor to house-sit while you’re away, or let your neighbors know your plans so they can look out for suspicious visitors.

Know Who’s Calling

If you have caller ID on your home phone, make good use of it and don’t answer calls from unknown numbers. This will help you avoid calls from companies or individuals who are running cons. Remember, any company or person who pressures you during difficult times probably isn’t looking out for your best interests.

Remember, never give out sensitive personal information over the telephone. If anyone calls you and asks for this information, ask what company they work for, hang up, and then call the company directly yourself and talk to someone you know and trust before making any decisions.

Be Mindful of What You Pay

As you are going through papers, pay all bills that you know are legitimate like the mortgage, utilities, credit cards, and car payments. Do not pay anything from unknown parties or companies, including invoices, investment opportunities, calls for orders placed, or calls for money owed.

Get a Second Opinion

Sorting through paperwork can be overwhelming during times of loss. Consider asking a friend, family member, or even a trusted professional like an accountant or an attorney to review any invoices or claims before you send a payment.

Help others in your community avoid scammers during tough times. Share this blog post with your friends and family. And share with us any tips you know that we should add to our list.

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