Question: My neighbor is 94 years old and in the care of a 50 something year old son who lives with her in squalor. Is this a case of “elderly neglect” that should be reported?
Answer: Obviously, this is a serious matter. There are several federal laws that impact state policy concerning elder abuse; however, there isn’t really any general federal statute that deals with this heinous problem directly. The Older Americans Act of 1965, through its implementing regulations, provides state funding for programs designed to protect vulnerable adults. And The Family Violence Prevention and Services Act provides federal funding at the state level to combat domestic violence and elder abuse. Nevertheless, the investigation of allegations of elder abuse, and the administrative and legal handling of these cases is regulated by law at the state and/or local level. Your state has enacted an Adult Protective Services statute. Thus, I recommend you look into this further by accessing The National Center on Elder Abuse. The National Center on Elder Abuse has a listing of reporting hotlines for each state and a wealth of other helpful resources. I hope you find this information helpful. Thank you for your inquiry and the best of luck!
Dennis Duncan, Attorney at Law
The Law Offices of Dennis L. Duncan, P.C.
Macon, Georgia 31210