The U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 2255 legislation, which includes The Senior Safe Act, late Monday to help protect seniors from financial exploitation.
Both H.R. 2255, the Housing Opportunities Made Easier (HOME) Act, and the Senior Safe Act (formerly H.R. 3758), had been standalone bills.
H.R. 3758 is companion legislation to S. 223, which was passed by the Senate Banking Committee and encourages financial services firms to provide appropriate training to front-line employees and producers, while granting immunity to those that report suspected abuse to regulators and law enforcement authorities.
Dirk Kempthorne, president and CEO of the American Council of Life Insurers, said in a statement that the Senior Safe Act “facilitates improved communication between insurance producers, life insurance companies and regulators in the event of suspected financial exploitation of senior citizens.”
“By encouraging the reporting of suspected fraud, the Senior Safe Act improves the ability of companies to work with regulators to protect seniors from losing their retirement savings,” said Kempthorne.
Paul Schott Stevens, president and CEO of the Investment Company Institute, added in a statement that the “vital legislation will establish a federal protection for financial institutions that act in good faith and with reasonable care to disclose the suspected exploitation of senior citizens” to a regulator or law-enforcement agency.
“While many states already shield financial institutions from liability when they disclose suspected elder financial abuse, this bill will provide such protection to all financial institutions, including all mutual fund transfer agents,” Stevens said.
Both ICI and ACLI urged the full Senate to pass the bill and send it to President Trump’s desk.