Ryan Conklin

By Ryan Conklin, Wright & Moore Law

Can you think of a time you received a suspicious phone call, letter or email? Maybe the caller indicated you had a past-due loan that required payment? Or the letter or email said you could get a bunch of money with a few quick steps?

While these are more common fact patterns, unfortunately the range of potential scams is immense. Though traditionally associated with the elderly, scams often reach young people in the form of online shopping or phony investments.

In the spirit of the Halloween season, let’s talk about a few ways to guard against financial tricksters and mischief-makers.

If it’s too good to be true…

To be safe, if you get a phone call, letter or email, and you don’t recognize the sender, approach the interaction with a healthy dose of skepticism. In general, legitimate businesses are not reaching out to you to solicit sensitive information or quickly send you a $10,000 check. Online shopping or investment scams may be harder to spot. Significant markdowns on expensive items or quick and easy investment opportunities are red flags. 

Rapid responses are essential

Once you spot fraudulent activity, quick action is so important to contain the damage. Freezing credit cards, contacting your bank, stopping payments, reporting the event to an identity protection service, even notifying your insurance are key steps. If you can respond swiftly, you might be able to escape unscathed.  

Lean on familiar parties

If you have a trusted banking relationship, take a moment to meet with your banking team to discuss fraud prevention measures. This may include additional signers on an account, account alerts, and special account transfers. Your bank should have internal protections in place to protect your money. Also, second opinions from trusted advisers, family or friends can help you spot potential scams.

How about an emergency plan?

A durable power of attorney is one way for a family member to aid in the management of finances. However, those powers are limited. In severe circumstances where a person cannot understand the consequences of his/her actions, a guardianship may be necessary. A guardianship is a major step because it removes a person’s autonomy, but it could be a necessary protective measure. Consult your legal counsel before pursuing a guardianship.

Invest in security

If identity theft is a major concern or a recurring problem for your business or family, it might be worthwhile to invest in an identity protection service. These services can be customized depending on your goals and could provide great peace of mind. Furthermore, check with your insurance agent to see if your policy provides some reimbursement for losses. 

The use of your personal information by criminals is a scary proposition. Some people make their livelihood off scamming hard-working business owners and families. Like other areas of risk assessment, take a look at your exposure and determine if protective steps are necessary. 

Wright & Moore Law Co., LPA has a rich heritage in Ohio agriculture. Since 1988, our firm has proudly assisted farmers, rural residents, and landowners from all over the state with their farm succession planning and agricultural legal needs. We would be happy to discuss your family goals and how to meet them. To learn more about Wright & Moore or schedule a meeting, call 740-990-0750 or visit OhioFarmLaw.com.
Labor has always been an issue, mainly because we are a seasonal operation. So that's a challenge finding somebody who only wants to work three months out of a year, sometimes up to six months.
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Mandy Way

Way Farms

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Ernie Welch

Van Wert County Farm Bureau

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Matt Aultman

Darke County Farm Bureau

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Jaclyn De Candio

Clark County Farm Bureau

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Jenna Gregorich

Coshocton County Farm Bureau

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Jared Hughes

Groovy Plants Ranch

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Hardin County Farm Bureau

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Mary Smallsreed

Trumbull County Farm Bureau

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