Reps. Sinema, Poliquin Reintroduce Senior Safe Act, Bipartisan Legislation to Help Protect Seniors From Fraud

WASHINGTON —Congresswoman Kyrsten Sinema (AZ-09) and Congressman Bruce Poliquin (ME-02) reintroduced the bipartisan Senior Safe Act, legislation to help identify, report, and stop financial abuse of seniors.

“Americans lose billions of dollars each year to financial fraud, and seniors are a top target,” said Congresswoman Sinema.  “These financial crimes devastate their bank accounts and often go unreported. Seniors deserve to retire with dignity, and they shouldn’t have to worry that their hard earned savings are at risk of fraud. This bill is a commonsense solution to help identify, report, and stop financial abuse of Arizona seniors.”

“Maine has the most elderly population in the Nation, a demographic that we have seen is particularly vulnerable to these vicious fraud schemes,” said Congressman Poliquin. “We need to make sure that our seniors are provided the help and protections against these fraud perpetrators, who are estimated to cost our seniors nearly $3 billion annually through illegal financial abuses. It is absolutely unacceptable for Mainers’ hard-earned investments to be so egregiously abused by common criminals, and I am proud to work across the aisle in continuing to ensure they are protected.”

Recent studies estimate nearly 1 in 5 American seniors may be a target of financial fraud or abuse. Even when financial institutions suspect abuse, the abuse may go unpunished. Current laws lack the necessary flexibility to allow financial institutions to report suspected abuse to authorities.

The Senior Safe Act encourages individuals and financial institutions to report suspected instances of fraud and elder financial abuse. It also incentivizes firms to train employees to identify and stop financial fraud.  This bill helps law enforcement track down financial criminals who target seniors by enabling banks, credit unions, investment advisors, broker-dealers, and other financial service providers to better communicate with appropriate agencies when they suspect financial exploitation of seniors.

Last Congress, this commonsense legislation passed the House with broad bipartisan support.