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Go back to: Alaska statutes
Go back to: Title 47. Welfare, Social Services, and Institutions.
Go back to: Chapter 24. Protection of Vulnerable Adults.

Sec. 47.24.900. Definitions.
In this chapter,
     (1) “abandonment” means desertion of a vulnerable adult by a caregiver;

     (2) “abuse” means
          (A) the intentional, knowing, or reckless nonaccidental and nontherapeutic infliction of physical pain, injury, mental or emotional distress, or fear, including coercion and intimidation; or

          (B) sexual assault under AS 11.41.410 or 11.41.420;

     (3) “caregiver” means
          (A) a person who is providing care to a vulnerable adult as a result of a family relationship, or who has assumed some or all responsibility for the care of a vulnerable adult voluntarily, by contract, as an employee of a business that provides care in an adult’s home, or by court order; or

          (B) an employee of an out-of-home care facility who provides care to one or more vulnerable adults;

     (4) “deception” means creating, reinforcing, or failing to correct a false impression or preventing another person from acquiring information that would affect the person’s judgment regarding a transaction;

     (5) “decision making capacity” means the ability to understand and appreciate the nature and consequences of a decision and the ability to reach and communicate an informed decision; in this paragraph, “informed decision” includes a decision made by the vulnerable adult that is free from undue influence;

     (6) “department” means the Department of Health and Social Services;

     (7) “designee” means another state agency or a community-based program, individual, or provider of supportive services that has been licensed, or authorized by agreement with the department, to provide one or more services to vulnerable adults;

     (8) “exploitation”
          (A) means unjust or improper use of another person or another person’s resources for one’s own profit or advantage, with or without the person’s consent; and

          (B) includes acts by a person who stands in a position of trust or confidence with a vulnerable adult or who knows or should know that the vulnerable adult lacks the capacity to consent that involve obtaining profit or advantage through undue influence, deception, fraud, intimidation, or breach of fiduciary duty; in this subparagraph, “fraud” has the meaning given in AS 13.26.595(1) and (2);

     (9) “fiduciary duty” means the duty of a third party who stands in a position of trust or confidence with another person, including a vulnerable adult, to act with due regard for the benefit and interest of that person;

     (10) “financial institution” means an institution subject to state or federal banking or financial regulations, including
          (A) a broker-dealer;

          (B) a commercial bank;

          (C) a savings bank;

          (D) a credit union;

          (E) a premium finance company;

          (F) a small loan company;

          (G) a bank holding company;

          (H) a financial holding company;

          (I) a trust company;

          (J) a savings and loan association;

          (K) a deferred deposit advance licensee;

          (L) an investment bank;

          (M) an insurance company subject to regulation by AS 21;

          (N) a licensee subject to regulation by AS 21; and

          (O) an investment adviser;

     (11) “incapacitated person” means a person whose ability to receive and evaluate information or to communicate decisions is impaired to the extent that the person lacks the ability to provide or arrange for the essential requirements for the person’s physical health or safety without court-ordered assistance;

     (12) “neglect” means the intentional, knowing, or reckless failure by a caregiver to provide essential care or services or access to essential care or services or to carry out a prescribed treatment plan necessary to maintain the physical and mental health of the vulnerable adult when the vulnerable adult is unable to provide or obtain the essential care or services or to carry out the prescribed treatment plan on the vulnerable adult’s own behalf; in this paragraph, “essential care or services” includes food, clothing, shelter, medical care, and supervision;

     (13) “person who stands in a position of trust or confidence” means a person who
          (A) is a relative by blood or marriage;

          (B) is a joint tenant or tenant in common;

          (C) has a legal or fiduciary relationship; or

          (D) is a person who has been entrusted with or has assumed responsibility for the use or management of the vulnerable adult’s assets or income;

     (14) “police officer” has the meaning given in AS 18.65.290;

     (15) “protective services” means services that are intended to prevent or alleviate harm resulting from undue influence, abandonment, exploitation, abuse, neglect, or self-neglect and that are provided to a vulnerable adult in need of protection; in this paragraph, “services” includes
          (A) protective placement;

          (B) applying for or obtaining public benefits;

          (C) obtaining health care services and supplies;

          (D) staying financial transactions;

          (E) petitioning for a protective order under AS 13.26.401 — 13.26.460;

          (F) assisting with personal hygiene;

          (G) obtaining food and clothing;

          (H) protection from physical and emotional abuse;

          (I) obtaining representative payee services; and

          (J) coordinating protective services;

     (16) “public home care provider” has the meaning given in AS 47.05.017(c);

     (17) “self-neglect” means an act or omission by a vulnerable adult that results, or could result in the deprivation of essential services necessary to maintain minimal mental, emotional, or physical health and safety;

     (18) “supportive services” means the range of services delivered by public and private organizations and individuals that assist the elderly and vulnerable adults with their social, health, educational, recreational, transportation, housing, nutritional, financial, legal, or other needs;

     (19) “unable to consent” means refusal to, or inability to, accept services because
          (A) the person is an incapacitated person or apparently is an incapacitated person;

          (B) of coercion by or fear of reprisal from the perpetrator of undue influence, abandonment, exploitation, abuse, or neglect;

          (C) of dependency on the perpetrator of undue influence, abandonment, exploitation, abuse, or neglect for services, care, or support; or

          (D) of an inability to perceive that refusal to consent results in an imminent and substantial danger of loss, waste, or dissipation of income or assets, eviction, physical or mental harm to self or others, or death;

     (20) “undue influence” means the use by a person who stands in a position of trust or confidence of the person’s role, relationship, or authority to wrongfully exploit the trust, dependency, or fear of a vulnerable adult to gain control over the decision making of the vulnerable adult, including decision making related to finances, property, residence, and health care;

     (21) “vulnerable adult” means a person 18 years of age or older who, because of incapacity, mental illness, mental deficiency, physical illness or disability, advanced age, chronic use of drugs, chronic intoxication, fraud, confinement, or disappearance, is unable to meet the person’s own needs or to seek help without assistance.

Other Sections in this Chapter: