Maryland criminal defense attorneys are seeing more prosecutions involving the exploitation of vulnerable adults. Section of the Maryland Code Annotated, Criminal Law provides for a criminal action against a person who exploits a vulnerable adult. The elements are:. The victim is a vulnerable adult a. The defendant knew or should have known that the victim was a vulnerable adult 3. Undue influence does not include the normal influence that one member of a family has over another member of the family, but means domination and influence amounting to force and coercion such that the vulnerable adult of individual over 68 years old was prevented from exercising free judgment and choice.
Abuse and Neglect Of Elderly Persons | The Maryland People's Law Library
Under Maryland law any health practitioner, police officer, or human service worker who has reason to believe that a vulnerable adult is in danger is required to report that fact to the local department of social services. Any concerned person may make such a report. The purpose of the law is to prevent or remedy neglect, self-neglect, abuse, or exploitation of vulnerable adults who are unable to protect their own interests and are at risk of immediate harm to their own person or to others. The following definitions are very important:. It is also a crime for anyone responsible for the supervision of a vulnerable adult to neglect or abuse the person. Any abuse or neglect not rising to first degree abuse or neglect of a vulnerable adult may still be prosecuted as misdemeanor of abuse or neglect of a vulnerable adult in the second degree.