Legislation sponsored locally by Assemblymen Matt Milam to prohibit financial advisors from using misleading information to make it appear they have special certifications for advising senior citizens is now law.
The law prohibits financial advisors from advertising senior-specific certifications or professional designations which:
· Was not actually earned or that an advisor is otherwise ineligible to use;
· Is nonexistent or self-conferred;
· Indicates or implies a level of occupational qualifications obtained through education, training or experience that the person does not have; and
· Is conferred by any organization that does not meet certain recognized professional criteria.
“Consumers rely on professional designations because they confer a level of trustworthiness and expertise that not everybody has,” said Milam (D-Cumberland/Atlantic/Cape May). “Especially in financial matters, these seals of approval mean a lot. We need to take a tough stance against advisors who take advantage of the goodwill these certifications create – especially among seniors and retirees.”