Rep. Cartwright Introduces Bipartisan Bill to Protect Veterans from Scams
Washington, DC – Today, U.S. Representative Matt Cartwright (PA-17) re-introduced a bill that would protect older, low-income veterans from financial scams. The bipartisan Veterans Care Financial Protection Act would direct the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) to work with other federal agencies and states to develop and implement standards that protect veterans from predatory practices. Reps. Seth Moulton (MA-06), Jim Renacci (OH-16), Steve Cohen (TN-09), and Ted Deutch (FL-22) were original co-sponsors of this legislation.
The VA offers an Aid & Attendance (A&A) benefit for veterans who qualify for a VA pension, and need financial help with in-home care or assisted living. The A&A application is free, but scam artists have targeted veterans and charged them to obtain these benefits. With this information, scammers can take ahold of the veteran’s assets, and may even move them into an irrevocable trust or an annuity. This movement of assets may also disqualify the veteran from other assistance, such as Medicaid.
“These scams are completely unacceptable and appalling,” said Rep. Cartwright. “There needs to be greater protections for our nation’s heroes. This bill will put a stop to these predatory financial scams, and help ensure veterans receive their hard-earned benefits.”
"I am proud to support this bipartisan effort to protect veterans who receive VA funded assistance from becoming the victims of financial scams. Our veterans deserve the best health care in the world and should be protected from financial predators," Rep. Moulton said.
U.S. Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) introduced companion legislation in the Senate.
"The Aid and Attendance program is a critical lifeline for the thousands of older veterans who just need a helping hand for basic daily activities," said Senator Warren. "Unfortunately, the program is being undermined by scams, putting our veterans at even greater financial risk and wasting taxpayer dollars. This legislation will help put a stop to these financial scams and ensure that we honor our commitments to our veterans."