Adult Protective Services (APS)

Adult Protective Services (APS) - Cumberland County Only

Adult Protective Services

If someone you know is 18 years of age or older, living in the community and is the subject of abuse, neglect and/or exploitation, contact your county APS office. If you need to report a case of abuse, neglect or exploitation in Cumberland County please call (856)825-0255 and ask to speak with an Investigator.

An APS investigation is a thorough assessment of a potential at-risk adult. Within 72 hours of a referral’s receipt, a face-to-face meeting with the adult by a trained APS social worker is required. During this meeting the potential client is interviewed in private. Every effort is made to determine the competence of the adult. Other individuals or agencies that have knowledge of the situation may also be interviewed. When the investigation is complete a report is submitted to the APS Supervisor who will then consult with the social worker and determine if the adult is at risk of abuse, neglect or exploitation. All information generated by the investigation is confidential.

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.

Self-Neglect is when an individual is unable or incapable to take care of themselves. The conditions of the home may be unsanitary, the person may lack resources for food, utilities may be shut off and they may need medical treatment.

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 seniors 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.

Are You Protected If You Make A Report? Are You Required to Report?

52:27D-409 Report of suspected abuse, neglect, exploitation.

4. a. (1) A health care professional, law enforcement officer, firefighter, paramedic or emergency medical technician who has reasonable cause to believe that a vulnerable adult is the subject of abuse, neglect or exploitation shall report the information to the county adult protective services provider.

(2)Any other person who has reasonable cause to believe that a vulnerable adult is the subject of abuse, neglect or exploitation may report the information to the county adult protective services provider.

b. The report, if possible, shall contain the name and address of the vulnerable adult; the name and address of the caretaker, if any; the nature and possible extent of the vulnerable adult's injury or condition as a result of abuse, neglect or exploitation; and any other information that the person reporting believes may be helpful.

c. A person who reports information pursuant to this act, or provides information concerning the abuse of a vulnerable adult to the county adult protective services provider, or testifies at a grand jury, judicial or administrative proceeding resulting from the report, is immune from civil and criminal liability arising from the report, information, or testimony, unless the person acts in bad faith or with malicious purpose.

d. An employer or any other person shall not take any discriminatory or retaliatory action against an individual who reports abuse, neglect or exploitation pursuant to this act. An employer or any other person shall not discharge, demote or reduce the salary of an employee because the employee reported information in good faith pursuant to this act. A person who violates this subsection is liable for a fine of up to $1,000.

e. A county adult protective services provider and its employees are immune from criminal and civil liability when acting in the performance of their official duties, unless their conduct is outside the scope of their employment, or constitutes a crime, actual fraud, actual malice, or willful misconduct.


New Jersey APS Fact Sheet

National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA) Fact Sheet