Legal Protection for Vulnerable Adults in Seattle

Preventing Abuse and Exploitation Through a Vulnerable Adult Protection Order

Just as an order for protection can protect a person from domestic violence or family abuse, Washington law provides protection for vulnerable adults from physical neglect, abuse or financial exploitation. At Ridgway Law Group, the protection of elderly or disabled persons is an important focus of our practice. An attorney from our firm can advise you regarding the best ways to protect a loved one who might be subjected to physical or financial harm.

Claims of abuse or neglect from an elderly or disabled loved one need to be taken seriously. Our legal team has the experience and legal understanding to help you recognize and pursue your options. In some cases, seeking a Vulnerable Adult Protection Order may be appropriate.

Vulnerable adults eligible for this protection do not need to be fully incapacitated or disabled. The state law that defines valid claims for protection includes anyone under residential or home care as well as people with developmental disabilities or for whom a guardian could be appointed. The main issue is not legal incompetence or total disability. Instead, it is dependence on the services or care of another.

A Vulnerable Adult Protection Order can protect an individual from problems such as:

  • Abandonment
  • Physical, sexual or emotional abuse
  • Exploitation, including financial exploitation
  • Neglect
  • The threat of any of these, especially when intended to influence the behavior or decisions of the vulnerable person

The police or sheriff's office can enforce a vulnerable adult protection order in much the same way that they enforce protection orders in domestic violence situations. Further, violating a protection order is a criminal offense.

Let Us Help You Defend Your Loved One

Our firm provides comprehensive client service when you need to consider acting on claims of abuse or neglect. We can help you seek a Vulnerable Adult Protection Order and take the necessary steps to enforce it when issued, and we can also advise you concerning the use of powers of attorney to give your loved one an additional layer of protection, especially in cases where there is a threat of financial exploitation. Our probate litigation experience is valuable in actions to recover assets lost through exploitation. For additional information about the services we provide on behalf of vulnerable adults, contact us at our Seattle office.