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Legal Information: Maryland

Statutes: Maryland

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November 27, 2023

§ 14-101. Definitions

In general

(a) In this title the following words have the meanings indicated.


(b) “Abuse” means the sustaining of any physical injury by a vulnerable adult as a result of cruel or inhumane treatment or as a result of a malicious act by any person.


(c) “Director” means the director of the local department in the county where the vulnerable adult lives.

Disabled person

(d) “Disabled person” has the meaning stated in § 13-101(e) of the Estates and Trusts Article.


(e) “Emergency” means any condition in which an individual is living that presents a substantial risk of death or immediate and serious physical harm to the individual or others.


(f) “Exploitation” means any action which involves the misuse of a vulnerable adult’s funds, property, or person.

Health practitioner

(g) “Health practitioner” includes any person who is authorized to practice healing under the Health Occupations Article.

Human service worker

(h)(1) “Human service worker” means any professional employee of any public or private health or social services agency or provider.

(2) “Human service worker” includes:

(i) any social worker; and

(ii) any caseworker.

Law enforcement agency

(i) “Law enforcement agency” means a State, county, or municipal police department, bureau, or agency.

Local department

(j) Except as provided in §§ 14-201, 14-402, and 14-403 of this title, “local department” means the local department that has jurisdiction in the county:

(1) where the vulnerable adult lives;

(2) for purposes of a notice received under § 11-307 of the Corporations and Associations Article, where an individual who is at least 65 years old lives; or

(3) where the abuse is alleged to have taken place.

Local State’s Attorney

(k) “Local State’s Attorney” means the State’s Attorney for the county:

(1) where the vulnerable adult lives; or

(2) where the abuse is alleged to have taken place.


(l)(1) “Neglect” means the willful deprivation of a vulnerable adult of adequate food, clothing, essential medical treatment or habilitative therapy, shelter, or supervision.

(2) “Neglect” does not include the providing of nonmedical remedial care and treatment for the healing of injury or disease, with the consent of the vulnerable adult, recognized by State law instead of medical treatment.

Police officer

(m) “Police officer” means any State or local officer who is authorized to make arrests as part of the officer’s official duty.

Review board

(n) “Review board” means the adult public guardianship review board.


(o) “Secretary” means the Secretary of Human Services.


(p) “Self-neglect” means the inability of a vulnerable adult to provide the vulnerable adult with the services:

(1) that are necessary for the vulnerable adult’s physical and mental health; and

(2) the absence of which impairs or threatens the vulnerable adult’s well-being.

Vulnerable adult

(q) “Vulnerable adult” means an adult who lacks the physical or mental capacity to provide for the adult’s daily needs.