Governor Signing Bill

Gov. McDonnell signing bill.
Photo by David DeBiasi, AARP Virginia

Governor signed bill into law July 3

RICHMOND _ Governor Bob McDonnell signed the Financial Exploitation bill on July 3 that AARP Virginia volunteer Peggy Friedenberg was instrumental in getting passed.

Friedenberg, who attended the bill signing ceremony with AARP Advocacy Director David DeBiasi, became a strong advocate for protections against financial exploitation when she discovered that her mother had been a victim of financial abuse.  Friedenberg’s mother, then 84, had transferred the deed to her condo to her new housekeeper, who she had also made the primary beneficiary of her will.

Previously, the law in Virginia was unclear on how to prosecute financial exploitation of older adults. The Financial Exploitation bill (SB706 and HB 1682) makes it unlawful for any person who knows or should know that another person suffers from mental incapacity to financially exploit them. A violation is punishable as larceny.

“I’m very pleased that it will be easier to prosecute people who practice this crime that is devastating to families,” Friedenberg said.

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