CFPB Faults Banks For Failing To Report Many Suspicions Of Elder Financial Abuse Directly To Law Enforcement

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau faulted bank and credit unions today for frequently failing to report suspected cases of elder financial exploitation enough directly to the authorities.

The bureau called the lapse a possible missed opportunity to strengthen prevention and response.

“More reporting to the relevant law enforcement agencies can increase investigation and prosecution,” said the CFPB in an update to a 2016 report on the issue.

Banks and credit unions tell police, adult protective services offices or other first responders in fewer than three out 10 times they suspect this kind of harm to seniors.

The agency emphasized robust reporting to adult protective services can increase the likelihood victims will receive appropriate services.

As of April, 26 states and the District of Columbia have mandated the reporting of suspected elder financial exploitation by bankers, credit union employees and other financial professionals.

Since a year ago June, the federal Senior Safe Act has been aimed at taking away the fear of a variety of financial institutions and professionals they could be sued on privacy and other grounds for releasing personal financial information to authorities on the grounds seniors may be being harmed.

The law does not mandate reporting.

Several states require financial institutions to produce financial records relevant to suspected EFE to adult protective services and law enforcement agencies upon request.

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