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Georgia Adult Protective Services Manual

Georgia Adult Protective Services

Authority for Adult Protective Services is found at O.C.G.A. § 30-5-1 et seq. The stated purpose of the Act ” is to provide protective services for abused, neglected, or exploited disabled adults and elder persons. It is not the purpose of this chapter to place restrictions upon the personal liberty of disabled adults or elder persons, but this chapter should be liberally construed to assure the availability of protective services to all disabled adults and elder persons in need of them.” See O.C.G.A. § 30-5-2. Definitions, including those for abuse, caretaker, neglect, essential services, are found at O.C.G.A. § 30-5-3.

The following groups are mandatory reporter:

  • Any person required to report child abuse as provided in subsection (c) of Code Section 19-7-5;
  • Physical therapists;
  • Occupational therapists;
  • Day-care personnel;
  • Coroners;
  • Medical examiners;
  • Emergency medical services personnel, as such term is defined in Code Section 31-11-49;
  • Any person who has been certified as an emergency medical technician, cardiac technician, paramedic, or first responder pursuant to Chapter 11 of Title 31;
  • Employees of a public or private agency engaged in professional health related services to elder persons or disabled adults;  and
  • Clergy members.

In addition, employees at financial institutions with reason to believe exploitation has taken place must report. A member of the staff of a hospital, social agency, financial institution, or similar facility must make a report when he or she believes APS services are needed. Everyone else is a permitted reporter. Persons required to make a report may be charged with a misdemeanor if they fail to make a report. Persons reporting are entitled to confidentiality, except that prosecutors and law enforcement may have access. If they testify at a hearing, they have immunity from civil or criminal liability for making the report and for their testimony unless such person acted in bad faith, with a malicious purpose, or was a party to such crime or fraud.

O.C.G.A. § 30-5-5 authorizes caseworkers to seek an order from the Court if access is denied when investigating reports of abuse or neglect. The Court where the petition is filed is the probate court for the county of residence of the disabled adult or elder person or the county in which such person is found.

If the suspected victim has capacity, then “services may not be provided under this chapter to any person who does not consent to such services or who, having consented, withdraws such consent.” See O.C.G.A. § 30-5-5(e) (emphasis added). In other words, paternalism is not permitted when the alleged victim has capacity.

The Georgia Adult Protective Services Manual, MAN5500, is available online. The official version is at Below is an unofficial mirror.

Last Updated: October 20, 2023

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Table of Contents





Chapter 5000 – RESERVED

  • Reserved

Chapter 6000 – A/N/E MDT



Appendix A – Manual Transmittal Cover Letters

Appendix B – HOLD

Appendix C – Review Guides

Appendix D – APS Contact & Documentation Standards

Appendix E – Other Agency Referral Forms

Appendix F – Engaging the Reporter

Appendix G – Assessment and Investigation Forms

Appendix H – APS Structure

Appendix I – APS Field Safety Guide

Georgia Adult Protective Services

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