April 24, 2018 Division Resource

Elder Law Statutes Database Available

Michael Van Zandt

The Elder Law Committee has compiled a comprehensive database of elder law statutes with the assistance of the National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA). The database can be found here.

This database lists the elder law statutes for each individual state and provides a link to where the state statutes are made digitally available.

A number of states have very comprehensive protections for seniors, which may allow for the development of a model statute. There are some common themes among these statutes regarding the types of protections and reporting requirements in each state.

These are the common threads among the state statutes:

  • Definition of abuse to include intentional infliction of physical or mental harm, injury caused by negligent acts or omissions, unreasonable confinement, and sexual abuse or sexual assault
  • Definition of financial abuse
  • Mandatory reporting of abuse or neglect
  • Designation of mandatory reporters of abuse or neglect
  • Timeframes for reporting, including reports to law enforcement
  • Fines and jail time for failing to report
  • Provisions for emergency protective custody and services

The database will be an ongoing, living project of the Elder Law Committee. We need volunteers from each state to continually review the list to ensure it is up to date and accurate. 

Please take some time to review the database for the states in which you practice. Any changes to those statutes that have occurred can be sent to the Senior Lawyers Division Director, Emily Roschek, and myself, Michael Van Zandt. My e-mail is mvanzandt@hansonbridgett.com, and Emily can be reached at emily.roschek@americanbar.org.

Michael Van Zandt

Michael J. Van Zandt is a partner and co-chair of the Environmental & Natural Resources group at Hanson Bridgett in San Francisco. In addition to chairing the Senior Lawyer Division’s Experience editorial board, Van Zandt is a member of the Senior Lawyers Division Council, a representative for the ABA SLD Environment, Energy, and Resources Special Committee, a Litigation Counsel of America senior fellow, and an American Bar Foundation life fellow.