2013 Overview: Elder Abuse

Volume: 35 Issue: 2

(Note: The pdf for the issue in which this article appears is available for download: BIFOCAL Vol. 35, Issue 2.)

In 2013, the Commission’s elder abuse accomplishments were focused in five areas.

Policy and Practice
The Commission...

  • Provided background information and ideas to employees of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau regarding initiatives of that agency’s Office of Financial Protection for Older Americans.
  • Continued or established collaborations with financial industry representatives and regulators to enhance awareness of elder financial exploitation and to improve industry practices related to that problem.
  • Consulted for the DOJ Office for Victims of Crime project to develop an online elder abuse curriculum for legal services attorneys, providing input on content and design of training.
  • Provided technical assistance on financial exploitation and guardianship to a Department of Justice fellow involved in efforts to develop the agency’s elder justice webpage.
  • Provided technical assistance on an array of elder abuse issues to staff of state and federal agencies and Congressional offices and committees.
  • Consulted for AARP’s State Advocacy and Strategic Initiatives division to provide technical assistance and training on financial exploitation and power of attorney abuse.

The Commission...

  • Updated and expanded the Commission’s old charts on power of attorney statutory provisions and prepared a short and a long paper comparing those provisions.

Professional Education
The Commission...

  • Participated in 12 continuing legal education and other presentations on a variety of issues at national, regional, and state conferences and through webinars.
  • Published four articles in two publications: Victimization of the Elderly and Disabled; and Bifocal, the Commission’s e-journal.
  • Continued to serve on the editorial boards of the field’s pre-eminent publications, the Journal of Elder Abuse and Neglect and Victimization of the Elderly and Disabled.
  • Continued work on two federally funded projects to inform professionals serving elder abuse victims about legal issues and state statutes.

Consumer Education

  • The Commission continued working on a contract from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's Office of Financial Protection for Older Americans to develop four national and 24 state-specific guides for lay fiduciaries.

Media Awareness

  • Staff provided extensive background on financial exploitation and power of attorney abuse to the Wall Street Journal. ■


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About Bifocal

Bifocal, the Commission on Law and Aging's bi-monthly journal, provides timely, valuable legal resources pertaining to older persons, generated through the joint efforts of public and private bar groups and the aging network.



The Commission distributes Bifocal for free six times a year to elder bar section and committee members, legal services providers, elder law and other private practitioners, judges, court staff, elder advocates, policymakers, law schools, elder law clinics, law libraries, and other professionals in the law and aging network.

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Bifocal invites the submission of news about your elder bar section’s activities, as well as brief articles of interest to elder law and other professionals in the aging advocacy network.

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