Texas Adult Protective Services (APS)
Adult Protective Services responsibilities include:
What We Do
APS investigates abuse, neglect, and exploitation of adults who are elderly or have disabilities. Any adult who has a disability or who is age 65 or older over that is in a state of abuse, neglect, or exploitation is eligible to receive adult protective services.
Victims of abuse, neglect, or exploitation may get short-term help with shelter, home repairs, food, transportation, managing money, medical care, home healthcare services, and mental health services.
APS's mission is to protect older adults and persons with disabilities from abuse, neglect, and exploitation by investigating and providing or arranging for services, if needed, to stop or prevent further harm.
The two major types of APS services are:
Note: APS provides interpreters as required by law for clients (and those suspected of abuse, neglect or exploitation) who have limited English skills or are blind, deaf, hard of hearing, etc.
Adult Abuse Facts
The problem of abuse of the elderly and adults with disabilities became widely recognized only in the past few decades. Yet, it may be as common as child abuse. As the number of older Texans and awareness of the issue has increased, so has the number of cases Texas APS investigates.
In 2011, APS completed 87,741 investigations of abuse, neglect, or exploitation involving adults living in Texas communities. Of those cases, 58,068 were confirmed as valid. That compares to 56,170 investigations and 40,559 confirmed cases just a decade earlier.
Signs of Abuse of the Elderly or People with Disabilities
Abuse may cause various injuries such as scratches, cuts, bruises, burns, broken bones, or bedsores. It can also result in confinement, rape or sexual misconduct, and verbal or psychological abuse.
Neglect may cause starvation, dehydration, over- or under-medication, unsanitary living conditions, lack of personal hygiene. Neglected adults may also not have heat, running water, electricity, medical care.
Exploitation may result in loss of property, money, or income. Exploitation means misusing the resources of an elderly or disabled person for personal or monetary benefit. This includes taking Social Security or SSI (Supplemental Security Income) checks, misusing a joint checking account, or taking property and other resources.
Sometimes adults who are 65 years old or older or those who have disabilities may become isolated or ill and not have someone who is willing and able to help meet their basic needs.
How You Can Help
Prevention and Public Awareness
- Elder Abuse Is Everyone's Business (awareness campaign and video)
- Web Video - A Closer Look at APS Caseworkers and Clients
- Health Information for Seniors (from U.S. government)
- Danger from Summer Heat is Everyone’s Business
APS Related Links
- APS History
- Community Satisfaction Survey Results Report
- APS and the TEAM Institute
- How to Request a Case Record
- See Agency Reports for addition presentations and reports
- Contract Services
Laws and Handbooks
- APS In-Home Services and Investigations Handbook
- APS Facility Investigations Handbook
- Proposed and Adopted Rules in the Texas Register
- Texas Adult Protection Legal Definitions