Vulnerable adult

As defined in the psychology, sociology, social work and legal fields, a vulnerable adult, or an adult at risk, is a person over the age of 18 who is at risk of harm or who lacks some life skills. A vulnerable adult is unable, rather than unwilling, to properly learn or properly maintain these skills and is usually completely without, and unable to obtain, any family, friends, acquaintances or other assistive persons in their lives to offer education or assistance in these areas (see: abandonment). To be classed as vulnerable, the adult's circumstances must be unable to be altered or improved by the adult's own individual actions without direct assistance from a more capable adult. The vulnerable adult must also be shown to be, on some significant level, a risk to themselves if assistance is not provided.


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