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Managing someone else’s money: New protection from ID theft and fraud

September 27, 2018
Source: Federal Trade Commission

If you manage someone else’s money, protecting your loved one from financial exploitation and scams is among your important responsibilities. Starting September 21st, 2018, a new federal law lets some financial caregivers request a security freeze, also called a credit freeze, on their loved one’s behalf. Taking this step can help protect them from identity theft and fraud.

Anyone can be a victim of identity theft

Identity theft happens when someone steals personal information, such as a Social Security number. That lets hackers, thieves, and even people you know open new credit cards and other financial accounts in your name. A security freeze restricts access to your credit reports and makes it hard for identity thieves to open new accounts in your name. Under the new law, it’s free to freeze and unfreeze your credit file at all three of the nationwide consumer reporting agencies – Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion.

Help for financial caregivers

But what about people who can’t manage their finances on their own? The new law lets people with certain legal authority act on someone else’s behalf to freeze and unfreeze their credit file. The new law defines a “protected consumer” as an incapacitated person, someone with an appointed guardian or conservator, or a child under the age of 16.

If you’re acting on behalf of a protected consumer, you must give the credit reporting agencies proof of authority before you can freeze and unfreeze the protected consumer’s credit. Proof of authority includes:

  • A court order (such as an order naming you guardian or conservator), or
  • A valid power of attorney.

To freeze or unfreeze the credit file of a child under 16, you must provide other proof of authority.

You’ll also need to provide proof of your identity, which can be your Social Security card, your birth certificate, or your driver’s license or other government issued identification.

If you think you or someone you know is a victim of identity theft, visit the Federal Trade Commission’s IdentityTheft.gov to get a personalized step-by-step recovery plan.



FACT SHEET - Licensed vs. Unlicensed Home Care Services

The Home Care Services Consumer Protection Act took effect in California on January 1, 2016 mandates that all Home Care Organizations (HCOs) must be licensed by the Caliornia Department of Social Services (CDSS) prior to providing home care services. Additionally, all Home Care Aides (HCAs) employed by HCOs must be registered on the HCA Registry prior to providing care in the home. To provide the care that you or your loved ones need, the Act ensures that HCOs are using HCAs who meet training requirements, are free of active tuberculosis, and are background check cleared through CDSS. Heritage Senior Care is licensed by the CDSS and all of our caregivers are trained and registered.
PDF of Fact Sheet



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