In recognition of Holocaust Education Week, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Jimmy Patronis is highlighting the Department of Financial Services’ (DFS) Holocaust Victims Assistance Program.
The program helps all Florida Holocaust survivors in their recovery of proceeds from insurance policies issued to Holocaust victims and restitution for Nazi-confiscated bank accounts, art and property. Holocaust Education Week is observed during the second week of November, which corresponds with the anniversary of Kristallnacht, a defining moment in the discrimination and persecution of Jewish families by the Nazis.
“During Holocaust Education Week, we stand together to recognize the victims and survivors of the Holocaust. This unthinkable tragedy must never be forgotten, and we must ensure that all Floridians are educated on this tragic part of history so we will never relive it. Last year, we assisted survivors and their families with securing more than $15 million through our Holocaust Victims Assistance Program, and I hope to see these claims resolved, and property recovered. Florida is proud to be home to the third largest Jewish population in the country, and as CFO, I’m always proud to support Florida’s Jewish community,” Patronis said.
Since 1998, DFS’ Division of Consumer Services has worked to reunite Florida Holocaust survivors seeking to recover stolen assets, such as confiscated bank accounts, art and property, determined by the Holocaust Victims Assistance Act. Since its inception, the total monetary recoveries and assistance recovered through the Holocaust Victims Assistance Program is more than $92 million.
Although many of the deadlines have passed for submitting claims to compensation programs, it may be possible to submit a claim directly with the financial institution or with remaining open restitution funds. The Florida Department of Financial Services provides education and assistance to Holocaust survivors and their heirs regarding restitution programs from Germany, Poland, the Czech Republic, France, Austria, Hungary and other countries. Information and assistance is also provided to individuals seeking access to much-needed home health care services.
Anyone who needs assistance with filing a Holocaust-era financial claim or assistance in obtaining social welfare services can contact the Holocaust Victims Assistance Helpline by phone at (800) 388-4069 or via email at HolocaustAssistance@MyFloridaCFO.com.
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