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Mandated Reporting Adult Protective Services Title Graphic

Unit 2


Familiarize yourself with the role of Adult Protective Services.

Understand the definitions and indicators of abuse, neglect and exploitation. In order to talk about what is reportable, you must begin with definitions of an incapacitated or dependent adult.


Incapacitated Adult

  • Any adult who is impaired by reason of mental illness, mental deficiency, physical illness or disability to the extent that that individual lacks sufficient understanding or capacity to make or communicate responsible decisions concerning that individual’s person, or to the extent the adult can not effectively manage or apply that individual’s estate to necessary ends.
    (Title 17-A; Section 555)

Dependent Adult

  • A dependent adult is one who has a physical or mental condition that substantially impairs the adult’s ability to adequately provide for that adult’s daily needs. This includes a resident of a nursing home or assisted living facility. It also includes a person considered a dependent person under Title 17-A;section 555.


Key Points

  • Adults are presumed to have capacity to give informed consent unless found not to have capacity to make decisions by a Probate Judge in a guardianship hearing. Guardianship will be discussed later.

  • Informed consent is a decision made with all the relevant information about the issue, with an understanding of the consequences of a decision, and in the absence of duress.

  • Adults have the right to make their own decisions regardless of how others view those decisions. For example, a competent brittle diabetic who understands the importance of a diet yet chooses not to follow that diet is using poor judgment.

  • Due to physical or mental impairment, dependent adults require the assistance of others to meet their daily needs.


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