Identifying vulnerable clients, and assessing mental capacity to ultimately safeguard and protect against abuse is very much at the forefront of my role as an Estate Planner.
That said I decided to go back to my Psychology roots and spend some time really assessing the wider community and groups of people that could fall into the category of a vulnerable adult or adult at risk which is now the preferred term.
Vulnerability is no longer a matter of just simply being old or disabled. It goes much deeper and encompasses wider groups, some of which may have fallen under the radar or just simply not been considered as vulnerable by professional communities such as Accountants & Financial Advisers.
When I started writing this article I realised just how many different groups are actually vulnerable (in my humble opinion at least) and should be given extra consideration when meeting new clients and their wider families in order that I provide the very best service and advice to all my clients.
Protecting clients is naturally of paramount importance and ultimately the key driver for many clients and their families seeking my advice. With this comes a responsibility to ensure that all clients are treated fairly and met with the appropriate level of service to ensure their long term interests are served.
I would welcome any feedback as the list is not exhaustive and i'm sure there may be other groups. I'd certainly be keen to hear the opinions of others.