Authored By: Legal Hotline for Texans
What is elder abuse?
Elder abuse is when someone 65 or older is hurt by another person. The hurt can be physical, sexual, or mental. The hurt can be done on purpose, or because of neglect.
Is elder abuse a crime?
Yes. In Texas, it is a crime to abuse anyone. And, there
are special laws about elder abuse. Many elders need to have other people take care of them. They may have a health care assistant or other caretaker in their home. And many live in special homes or facilities. The law protects elders from caretakers who may abuse, neglect or exploit them.
Who is considered a caretaker?
A caretaker can be an owner, operator, or employee of a group home, nursing facility, assisted living facility, or other care facility. A caretaker is also someone who takes care of a person in his or her home.
What if I know about an older person being abused?
The law says you must report abuse, neglect or exploitation. You can call the Department of Family and Protective Services at 1-800-252-5400 – day or night. They will not give your name to the victim or the victim’s family. (Texas Human Resources Code §48.051). You may also report the abuse to your local police, sheriff, District Attorney or County Attorney.
What if I do not want to call the authorities?
The law says you must report abuse, neglect or exploitation. You can call the Department of Family and Protective Services at 1-800-252-5400.
They will not give your name to the victim or the victim’s family. (Texas Human Resources Code, § 48.051)
For more information…
Contact your local authorities or call Protective Services at: 1-800-252-5400.
Texas Law Help has useful information on many areas of the law. Go to www.texaslawhelp.org.
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