Resources

Explore our broad assortment of information and materials to learn more about how older adults make financial decisions. Whether you are a finance professional, psychologist or caregiver, you'll find resources relevant to your needs.


Research & Publications


The complete bibliography of Dr. Peter Lichtenberg's published research on assessing financial decision making and vulnerability in older adults.


MOST RECENT

  • The Success After Financial Exploitation (SAFE) program provides financial education and individual financial coaching to older urban adults, many of them African American. SAFE participants were able to repair their credit scores, reduce new financial burdens, and even recover monies. Participants were assessed prior to services and performed poorer on executive functioning tasks than controls. They also reported more physical health problems, anxiety and depressive symptoms and scored significantly higher on risk in a financial decision-making scale. Clinicians need to be attuned to the financial health of their older clients who, if struggling with financial exploitation, may also suffer from problems with cognitive functioning and physical and mental health.
    Clinical Gerontologist, Jan 29, 2019, https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/07317115.2019.1569190
  • 150 participants completed the Family & Friends Interview (or FFI) about a known older adult’s financial decisional abilities. The FFI had adequate sensitivity and specificity to detect a relative's or friend's current concerns regarding financial exploitation and is useful for collecting 3rd party information about an older adult’s ability to make financial decisions.
    Journal of Elder Abuse & Neglect, Dec 20, 2018, https://doi.org/10.1080/08946566.2018.1556762

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Training & Education


VIDEOS & WEBINARS


Deepen your knowledge by watching Dr. Lichtenberg present webinars to the National Adult Protective Services Association and conduct an actual Financial Vulnerability Assessment.


ORGANIZATIONS


A carefully vetted list of credible organizations that provide safe, accurate information about protecting older adults from financial abuse and preventing financial exploitation.

Get Certified on the Lichtenberg Scales

Certification is simple and straightforward. Our convenient online trainings show you how to administer the assessments to achieve accuracy and reliability. Training to become certified to use the Decision Tracker and the Family & Friends Interview is available to all professionals. Training and certification to use the Vulnerability Assessment, however, should be completed only by a mental health professional.

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Frequently Asked Questions


EXPLORE QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS AROUND FINANCIAL DECISION-MAKING TERMS AND CONCEPTS

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Do I have to be trained to administer these interviews?
Yes.Training insures that the interviews are conducted reliably and effectively to produce the most accurate results. Our trainings are designed to be easy to follow while insuring mastery of the interview skills.
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What is undue influence?
Influence or coercion by someone who intentionally uses his or her role and power to deceive and exploit the trust, dependency, and fear of another and gain decision-making control. The influencer uses various techniques or manipulations over time to gain power and compliance. These can be so subtle that the victim doesn’t realize he or she is being manipulated. Many cases of financial exploitation result from undue influence.
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How can I identify undue influence in an older adult?
Some common signs are: 1. Significant gifts to people like caregivers, service providers and acquaintances outside the usual sphere of the older adult’s love and commitment. 2. Gifts to anyone that are so large they threaten the older adult’s economic security. 3. Loans, particularly if undocumented, to anyone. 4. The older adult’s fiduciary (such as an attorney or trustee) making decisions that reflect poor judgment or conflict of interest. 5. Estate planning documents naming non?family members as fiduciaries or beneficiaries. 6. Joint accounts with non?family members. 7. Checks prepared by others but signed by the older adult. 8. Bequests or other arrangements favoring one child, particularly if that child lives with the older adult. 9. Large discrepancies between the older adult’s understanding of his or her estate and its true value 10. Excessive fees charged by professional finance managers such as trustees, attorneys, financial advisors and stockbrokers.
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What’s the difference between being a conservator, guardian, and having power of attorney?
A conservator is a person (family member, friend, or paid professional), agency or institution appointed by the court to make financial decisions for someone a judge has determined is unable to make such decisions. A guardian is a person (family, friend, or paid professional), agency, or institution appointed by the court to make personal decisions for another. Unlike a conservator, a guardian’s authority is often limited by statutes and can also be limited by the judge to specific tasks or decisions based on the retained capacities of the person. A power of attorney is a legal instrument used to delegate authority to another. The person who signs a power of attorney is called the “principal,” and the person to granted the authority is delegated is the “agent.” A “durable” power of attorney enables the agent to act for the principal even after the principal loses capacity to make decisions, and is effective until revoked by the principal or until the principal’s death. A durable power of attorney generally refers to financial decisions and can be an effective alternative to guardianship, allowing an individual to plan for the control of his or her affairs in the event of incapacity.
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What is financial incapacity?
The law starts with an assumption of capacity, which refers to decision making regarding a number of financial tasks, such as general financial management of assets and debts, writing checks, paying bills, knowing and using currency and coins, making contracts and writing wills. Financially incapacity means a person is unable to manage their financial resources. This can be the result of a number of conditions including mental illness, dementia, drug use, physical illness and disability. Determination of incapacity is complex. Psychological evaluations, medical reviews, as well as legal standards (that vary from state-to-state) are used in the determination.
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How can I encourage my entire organization to use the Older Adult Nest Egg interviews and resources?
Contact us and we can work with you to bring Older Adult Nest Egg to your company or organization. Adult Protective Services employees have already been trained in several parts of the country, and we are researching use of the Tracker in Virginia, Minnesota and New York. The Michigan Alzheimer’s Disease Center has also made the Tracker interview part of its longitudinal study on cognitive changes.
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What is motivational Interviewing?
Motivational interviewing tries to change behavior by gently moving a person from indecision and uncertainty and toward making positive decisions and accomplishing established goals. The technique helps people resolve their ambivalence and insecurities through empathetic listening, helping clients become aware of discrepancies between their goals and behavior, avoiding arguments and direct confrontations, and supporting self-efficacy and optimism.The client is central and is guided to generate the arguments and solutions for change.
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Why doesn't the audio for certification training play when I view it in Safari's browser?
Safari, and a few other browsers recently made changes to autoplay for video and audio files. You must now enable audio and video to autoplay on Safari explicitly for OlderAdultNestEgg.com. To do this, open OlderAdultNestEgg.com in Safari. In the Safari menu select "Safari" > "Preferences"> "Websites" >. Select "Auto+Play" in the left "General" menu and "olderadultnestegg.com" in the main window under the heading "Allow websites below to automatically play media:" Select "Allow All Auto-Play" from the drop-down options. Your audio for OlderAdultNestEgg.com will be enabled.
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I forgot my password, but I don't seem to receive the forgot password email to reset it. What can I do?
Step One: check your spam folder and add the sender's contact information, info@olderadultnestegg.com, to your contact list and try again.
Spam filters are set at varying entry points including settings you control on your personal computer, network settings that your IT group manages, and even at the internet provider level. Most problems with missing emails are solved by looking in your spam folder and/or adding the sender's email address to your contact list. But that doesn't always solve the problem. If your problem persists, check with your IT group to see if they can detect if emails from the sender info@olderadultnestegg.com or the domain www.olderadultnestegg.com are being caught in the network spam filter.

Show more questions and answers
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Do I have to be trained to administer these interviews?
Yes.Training insures that the interviews are conducted reliably and effectively to produce the most accurate results. Our trainings are designed to be easy to follow while insuring mastery of the interview skills.
+
How can I encourage my entire organization to use the Older Adult Nest Egg interviews and resources?
Contact us and we can work with you to bring Older Adult Nest Egg to your company or organization. Adult Protective Services employees have already been trained in several parts of the country, and we are researching use of the Tracker in Virginia, Minnesota and New York. The Michigan Alzheimer’s Disease Center has also made the Tracker interview part of its longitudinal study on cognitive changes.
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What is motivational Interviewing?
Motivational interviewing tries to change behavior by gently moving a person from indecision and uncertainty and toward making positive decisions and accomplishing established goals. The technique helps people resolve their ambivalence and insecurities through empathetic listening, helping clients become aware of discrepancies between their goals and behavior, avoiding arguments and direct confrontations, and supporting self-efficacy and optimism.The client is central and is guided to generate the arguments and solutions for change.
+
Why doesn't the audio for certification training play when I view it in Safari's browser?
Safari, and a few other browsers recently made changes to autoplay for video and audio files. You must now enable audio and video to autoplay on Safari explicitly for OlderAdultNestEgg.com. To do this, open OlderAdultNestEgg.com in Safari. In the Safari menu select "Safari" > "Preferences"> "Websites" >. Select "Auto+Play" in the left "General" menu and "olderadultnestegg.com" in the main window under the heading "Allow websites below to automatically play media:" Select "Allow All Auto-Play" from the drop-down options. Your audio for OlderAdultNestEgg.com will be enabled.
+
I forgot my password, but I don't seem to receive the forgot password email to reset it. What can I do?
Step One: check your spam folder and add the sender's contact information, info@olderadultnestegg.com, to your contact list and try again.
Spam filters are set at varying entry points including settings you control on your personal computer, network settings that your IT group manages, and even at the internet provider level. Most problems with missing emails are solved by looking in your spam folder and/or adding the sender's email address to your contact list. But that doesn't always solve the problem. If your problem persists, check with your IT group to see if they can detect if emails from the sender info@olderadultnestegg.com or the domain www.olderadultnestegg.com are being caught in the network spam filter.

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What is motivational Interviewing?
Motivational interviewing tries to change behavior by gently moving a person from indecision and uncertainty and toward making positive decisions and accomplishing established goals. The technique helps people resolve their ambivalence and insecurities through empathetic listening, helping clients become aware of discrepancies between their goals and behavior, avoiding arguments and direct confrontations, and supporting self-efficacy and optimism.The client is central and is guided to generate the arguments and solutions for change.


View all frequently asked questions


Glossary


Some of the terms used in assessing financial decision making are academic, medical or legal in nature. Find simple, accurate definitions of these profession-specific terms here.

intellectual & contextual factors:
As explained under “Financial Decision-Making Abilities and Scoring,” a person must communicate several factors to confirm their decisional abilities: choice, rationale, understanding and appreciation. These are termed Intellectual Factors. Another group of factors, called Contextual Factors (the context of the decision), involves a person’s underlying traits. These are: awareness of the financial situation, psychological vulnerability and susceptibility to influence. Low awareness paired with high vulnerability and susceptibility can significantly impair the Intellectual Factors. Scoring for Older Adult Nest Egg assessments weighs both factor types carefully for the most accurate result.


View Glossary

Print-and-Go Assessment Versions


Prefer a paper version of an interview or assessment for easy portability? Download here and administer at your convenience, then simply enter the responses online at a later date for risk scoring.


Contact Us

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Institute of Gerontology
At Wayne State University


87 East Ferry St.,
Pauline Knapp Building
Detroit, MI 48202

(313) 664-2600


Wayne State University, Institute of Gerontology

Copyright 2019 Privacy Policy

Older Adult Nest Egg assessments provide information only about financial decision-making performance. Assessment results detail the client’s responses to a specific financial decision or transaction. They assist the interviewer only in identifying potential areas of strength or challenge regarding that decision or transaction and as informed by the interviewer’s independent judgment. Assessments DO NOT provide diagnosis or treatment recommendations. Older Adult Nest Egg assessments are to be conducted by trained interviewers. Assessment reports are not stand-alone and require the interpretation of the interviewer and possibly a relevant professional within their scope of practice and in the context of all information they have gathered about their client. Assessments, risk scores and levels of concern are not intended to diagnose, treat or prevent cognitive impairment. Information provided by Older Adult Nest Egg is not a substitute for face-to-face consultation with a medical or mental health professional and should not be construed as individual medical or mental health advice. Older Adult Nest Egg assessments and the statements made on this website have not been evaluated by other regulatory bodies.