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New Florida Law to Protect Seniors

Governor DeSantis just signed a new law that could help prevent a senior citizen from losing their life savings or making a huge cash withdrawal from a bank that they might later regret.

The new law will let banks protect senior citizens or vulnerable adults from being ripped off.   The new law takes effect January 1, 2025.

senior on phone

The law allows banks to delay a withdrawal or transaction if bank employees suspect a senior citizen or vulnerable adult is being financially exploited. This delay expires in 15 days but can be extended. The reason for the law is that lawmakers believe many people in Florida, because of age or disability, are at increased risk of being exploited financially, and they may have substantial assets compared with younger people.

According to figures from the Florida Senate, the cost of elder financial exploitation in the U.S. in 2022 was about $270 billion and the amount of elder fraud losses in Florida are estimated to be more than $15 billion.

The new law requires banks to develop and implement training programs for bank employees on financial exploitation of people 65 or older and people who are impaired due to mental or emotional disabilities.

The FBI reported that 2023 was the highest year on record in terms of the numbers of complaints of elder fraud and just how much money victims lost.

Law enforcement officials said the biggest tip is to hang up the phone. If something sounds fishy like a lottery or cruise ticket, it’s most likely too good to be true.

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