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Elder law: Banks, brokerage firms aim to thwart financial abuse

Banks, financial advisers and brokers are geared up to take a bite out of elder financial abuse. Elder law in New York is in place to help protect senior citizens from abusive situations, including bilking seniors out of their savings. Now, loved ones who are worried about their elder family members have the Senior Safe Act in place to help.

FINRA, the self-regulator for the brokerage industry, aims to protect seniors from unscrupulous types looking to take advantage of them financially. The new trusted contact rule assures that financial advisers and brokers make every effort possible to get a contact person on file for those opening new accounts or updating existing ones. That way they will be able to notify the contact if they suspect something untoward is going on. Experts say it's a step in the right direction in an effort to thwart financial abuse of seniors.

With this safeguard in place, when elderly clients go to make major transactions, someone can get in touch with a contact on file just to make sure the transaction is on the level. Some elderly clients may suffer some form of dementia and try to make transactions without being fully aware of what they're doing. The loophole is that brokers or advisers don't need to get a trusted contact for accounts already in existence unless they're updated. 

A New York attorney experienced in elder law will be aware of such acts like the Senior Safe Act and would be able to answer any questions regarding its legal aspects. Keeping elders safe from financial abuse is something loved ones of seniors aim to do. A lawyer can provide information on how that may be possible.

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