4 Corners and Fairfax investigation alleges retirement home rip-offs

A joint investigation by Fairfax Media and the ABC’s 4 Corners program has shone a light on the dubious practices utilised by Australian retirement villages.

The report from Sarah Danckert and Adele Ferguson, looks at retirement village operator Aveo, who are one of the biggest providers of housing for the elderly.

Highlighting that the company’s complicated contracts include clauses which see vulnerable elderly people paying massive fees to leave the property’s they have purchased, the report features a same sex couple whose decades long relationship was not recognised by the company after one half of the couple died.

Geoff Richards, moved into one of Aveo’s villages with Harry Nash, his partner of over 55 years. According to The Age, after Harry passed away Geoff was forced to move out of the home they had shared, even though he was the sole beneficiary of his late partner’s estate, including the unit they had lived in.

“Imagine if a husband and wife,” Richards said, “and one of those died and was the only name on the title. Would they throw out the other surviving partner?”

Opponent of marriage equality have regularly claimed that LGBT Australians feature no legal discrimination and current laws provide adequate protections.

The report ‘Bleed Them Dry Until They Die’ airs on 4 Corners Monday night on ABC television at 8:30pm.

OIP Staff; Image: Stock image.

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