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6/28/2019 Sen. Lawson and Rep. Serodio’s bill that creates the ‘Senior Savings Protection Act’ passes the General Assembly
STATE HOUSE – Sen. Valarie J. Lawson (D-Dist. 14, East Providence) and Rep. Joe Serodio’s (D-Dist. 64, East Providence) legislation (2019-S 0433A / 2019-H 6091A) that establishes the “Senior Savings Protection Act” was passed by the General Assembly tonight.

The act would require certain individuals to report the occurrence or suspected occurrence of financial exploitation of persons who are 60 years of age or older and persons who have a disability between the ages of 18 and 59 years old.

“With so many terrible stories of our seniors and most vulnerable citizens being victimized through financial scams over the phone and on the internet, as well as more direct financial manipulation from people they trust, I saw that this bill was necessary to protect our seniors and our disabled citizens.  These crimes that drain the bank accounts of our at-risk populations need to be stopped before they are able to do maximum damage and this bill will hopefully accomplish the task of stopping these ever-evolving schemes and scams from taking place,” said Senator Lawson.

“Financial scams, especially those that target the elderly or disabled, are becoming increasingly more complex so it is important that we do everything in our power to protect the money and savings of our residents who are the most at-risk to be financially exploited.  This bill will create a good front-line defense against these heartless criminals who take advantage of our elderly and disabled populations,” said Representative Serodio.

According to the bill, if a qualified individual, a person associated with a broker-dealer who serves in a supervisory, compliance, or legal capacity, believes that financial exploitation is taking place, or being attempted, the individual must notify the Department of Business Regulation, the Division of Elderly Affairs, and law enforcement.  The individual may also alert immediate family members, legal guardians, conservators, or agents under a power of attorney of the person possibly being financially exploited.

The legislation also allows qualified individuals to hold financial transactions that they believe may be involved with financial exploitation.

The bill also calls for the Department of Business Regulation and the Division of Elderly Affairs to develop websites that include training resources to assist in the prevention and detection of financial exploitation against the elderly and the disabled.

The bill now heads to the governor’s desk for consideration.

For more information, contact:
Andrew Caruolo, Publicist
State House Room 20
Providence, RI 02903