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updated: 7/30/2012 7:36 AM

New Illinois laws aim to protect elderly

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Associated Press

New laws signed by Gov. Pat Quinn this weekend are aimed at protecting the elderly in Illinois by increasing oversight of caregivers and making it easier for authorities to respond to cases of abuse or neglect.

One of the new pieces of legislation allows prosecutors to ask a court to freeze a suspect's assets if he is charged with financial exploitation of an elderly person. That's meant to keep a defendant from spending stolen money before restitution is collected.

Another new measure allows police and fire departments access to reports of abuse, neglect or financial exploitation against the elderly. Previously, they could only access that information if a specific instance of abuse was reported to them.

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