The state House has given initial approval to a bill meant to protect older Missourians from losing their savings to potential thieves.
The bill, sponsored by Representative Jay Barnes (R-Jefferson City), would let a financial agent halt the dispersal of money from the accounts of a person aged 60 years or older, or a person between 18 and 59 who has a disability, if that agent suspects the client is being financially exploited, and would allow the agent to raise that concern with state authorities and family of the client.
The bill received overwhelming support in the House, but some Republicans like Mike Moon (R-Ash Grove) argued it was unnecessary. Fellow Republican Kevin Engler (R-Farmington) disagreed.
“There are provisions currently available to protect,” Moon began to argue, but Engler interrupted.
“No there’s not,” said Engler, who is a representative for Edward Jones. He said current law doesn’t allow an agent to raise concerns to anyone not named on an account.
“In the business that I’m in, I cannot tell someone’s child if dad, who is demonstrating dementia, is about ready to get ripped off,” said Engler.
The Senate has also approved a version of the legislation sponsored by Senator Eric Schmitt (R-Glendale).
Earlier story: Proposals target fraud against seniors and disabled