About the Article

Financial exploitation is one of the most common crimes against seniors. Exploitation schemes significantly impact the elderly, both financially and emotionally. As life expectancy and the population increase, so does the risk for further senior financial exploitation. Not only are crimes of this nature rampant across the United States, they are also severely underreported.

Various laws and proposals at the federal and state levels have attempted to curb these crimes; some of which have been successful, and some of which have proven insufficient. Ultimately, financial institutions are in the best position to aid prosecutors and communities in the prevention of financial crimes given their access to relevant information, connections to government, and ability to easily communicate with seniors. Accordingly, it is essential for any proposed legislation to include necessary reporting laws to ensure the financial sector’s compliance.

This Note surveys legislation at the state and federal levels that have attempted to solve the issue of senior financial exploitation through the regulation of banks and credit unions. It further recommends a federal solution focused on implementation of reporting laws that mandate financial institutions identify and remedy elderly financial exploitation. The proposed federal laws would motivate state governments to pass their own, ideally, more intensive and preventative legislation.

About the Author

Nora McGuire is the Executive Administrative Editor 2018–2019, Member 2017–2018 of The Elder Law Journal; J.D. 2019, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign; B.A. 2015, English and Media Study, University at Buffalo.

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The Elder Law Journal

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