Bid to stop freeloading family members

A recommendation to stop seniors from being financially abused by family members has been put to the Royal Commission into Family Violence.

Seniors Law, a Victorian based legal service specifically for older people, submitted a recommendation which, if put into place, would allow elderly people experiencing financial abuse to have intervention orders actioned.

The organisation has recommended the definition of family violence in the Family Violence Protection Act be broadened to include forms of financial abuse.

Gippsland Community Legal Service told The Express they regularly helped clients who experienced financial abuse.

If the act was broadened, circumstances such as family members living with their elderly relatives and refusing to pay their own way would be included.

Seniors Law told the commission it estimated up to five per cent of elderly people experienced some sort of abuse, mostly at the hands of family members.

They also said that 25 per cent of matters they assisted with involved property, equity and trust fund issues.