About Statutes

This page accesses the Code of Maryland (Statutes) and the Maryland Municipal Charters and Resolutions as compiled and maintained by the Department of Legislative Services.

The Code is arranged by and organized into “Articles” (e.g. Transportation Article), which are further subdivided into “titles”, “subtitles”, “sections”, “subsections”, “paragraphs”, subparagraphs”, etc.

Note that the “official” compilation of the laws (Chapters) enacted at each session of the General Assembly is published by the State as the “Laws of Maryland”, commonly referred to as the “Session Laws”. The Session Laws for each session are compiled chronologically by chapter number and serve as the source law from which the statutes accessed here are derived.

While the “Laws of Maryland” (Session Laws) constitute the official laws of the State, this Code and the annotated versions noted below are accepted as “evidence” of the law in all State courts and by all public offices and officials (See § 10-201 of the Courts & Judicial Proceedings Article). However, in the event of a conflict between the Code and the Session Laws, the Session Laws prevail.

Note: Annotated versions of the Code, published by LexisNexis and West, are available in book and online formats. These Annotated Codes include references to case law, related citations, and explanatory notations.

The Municipal Charters are updated each year by incorporating all charter resolutions received by the Department through May 31 of that year. Individual Municipal Resolutions are published to the General Assembly website as they are received by the Department.

Statute Text

Article - Family Law
(a)   In this title the following words have the meanings indicated.
(b)   “Abuse” means the sustaining of any physical injury by a vulnerable adult as a result of cruel or inhumane treatment or as a result of a malicious act by any person.
(c)   “Director” means the director of the local department in the county where the vulnerable adult lives.
(d)   “Disabled person” has the meaning stated in § 13-101(e) of the Estates and Trusts Article.
(e)   “Emergency” means any condition in which an individual is living that presents a substantial risk of death or immediate and serious physical harm to the individual or others.
(f)   “Exploitation” means any action which involves the misuse of a vulnerable adult’s funds, property, or person.
(g)   “Health practitioner” includes any person who is authorized to practice healing under the Health Occupations Article.
(h)    (1)   “Human service worker” means any professional employee of any public or private health or social services agency or provider.
(2)   “Human service worker” includes:
(i)   any social worker; and
(ii)   any caseworker.
(i)   “Law enforcement agency” means a State, county, or municipal police department, bureau, or agency.
(j)   Except as provided in §§ 14-201, 14-402, and 14-403 of this title, “local department” means the local department that has jurisdiction in the county:
(1)   where the vulnerable adult lives; or
(2)   where the abuse is alleged to have taken place.
(k)   “Local State’s Attorney” means the State’s Attorney for the county:
(1)   where the vulnerable adult lives; or
(2)   where the abuse is alleged to have taken place.
(l)    (1)   “Neglect” means the willful deprivation of a vulnerable adult of adequate food, clothing, essential medical treatment or habilitative therapy, shelter, or supervision.
(2)   “Neglect” does not include the providing of nonmedical remedial care and treatment for the healing of injury or disease, with the consent of the vulnerable adult, recognized by State law instead of medical treatment.
(m)   “Police officer” means any State or local officer who is authorized to make arrests as part of the officer’s official duty.
(n)   “Review board” means the adult public guardianship review board.
(o)   “Secretary” means the Secretary of Human Resources.
(p)   “Self-neglect” means the inability of a vulnerable adult to provide the vulnerable adult with the services:
(1)   that are necessary for the vulnerable adult’s physical and mental health; and
(2)   the absence of which impairs or threatens the vulnerable adult’s well-being.
(q)   “Vulnerable adult” means an adult who lacks the physical or mental capacity to provide for the adult’s daily needs.