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Administration on Aging (AoA)

Elder Rights Protection

Please select from the programs below to learn more.

Elder Abuse Prevention

The best way to intervene in the problem of elder abuse is to prevent it from happening in the first place. To this end, the Administration for Community Living has committed resources to several important projects designed to meet the goals of coordinating federal elder justice efforts, exploring new prevention and intervention models, and providing up-to-date research and information to professionals and the public.

Adult Protective Services

Adult Protective Services (APS) is a social services program provided by state and local governments nationwide serving older adults and adults with disabilities who are in need of assistance because of abuse, neglect, self-neglect, or financial exploitation (adult maltreatment). In all states, APS is charged with receiving and responding to reports of adult maltreatment and working closely with clients and a wide variety of allied professionals to maximize clients’ safety and independence. Most APS programs serve both older and younger vulnerable adults.

Legal Assistance

AoA programs and services funded under the Older Americans Act (OAA) are designed to empower older persons to remain independent, healthy, and safe within their homes and communities, for as long as possible. Legal assistance and elder rights programs work in conjunction with other AoA programs and services to maximize the independence, autonomy and well-being of older persons.

The Title III-B legal assistance network, the National Legal Resource Center, the Model Approaches demonstration grants, and Legal Assistance Developers are programs designed to protect older persons from direct challenges to independence, choice, and financial security. These programs also help older individuals understand their rights, exercise options through informed decision-making and achieve optimal benefit from the support and opportunities promised by law.

Legal programs under Title III-B, Title IV, and Title VII of the OAA provide and enhance important protections for older persons:

Office of Long-term Care Ombudsman Programs

The AoA Long Term Care Ombudsman Program began, as a demonstration program, in 1972. With funding from Titles II and VII of the OAA and other resources, Ombudsman programs operate in all states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Guam. Each state has an Office of the State Long-Term Care Ombudsman, headed by a full-time state ombudsman. As part of statewide ombudsman programs, thousands of local ombudsman staff and volunteers, assist residents and their families by providing a voice for those unable to speak for themselves.

Last Modified: 10/5/2016