The Better Business Bureau receives a number of reports of schemes against elderly people after losing their spouse.
According to the BBB, scam artists may obtain the names and general information of their victims from obituaries. After losing a loved one, it is encouraged to never make rush decisions without making sure you’re dealing with a trustworthy company.
The following ploys have been reported to the BBB:
Contracts for services allegedly signed before the spouse’s death - Unethical people offering home-related services visit a surviving with an allegedly signed contract by the deceased husband before his death.
Specially-engraved trinkets - A surviving spouse receives a trinket engraved with the name of her deceased husband along with an invoice. A note is also included that explains how the husband ordered the trinket especially for her.
Delinquent life insurance premium ploy - An insurance agent calls the surviving spouse with an alleged funeral home employee on the line. The widower is told that his wife’s life insurance premium was delinquent and a payment must be made to release funds to the funeral home.
Seniors are advised to check with the BBB whenever they are contacted by unknown individuals or businesses that demand payment for unfamiliar products or services.