Feb 03, 2015 - 07:41 AM
In approximately half of all states a "filial responsibility" is on the legal books indicating adult children have a legal responsibility to support their parents when their parents don't have sufficient income to take care of themselves. For more specific information on this type of law, check with an elder care attorney in your state.
It is possible self neglect, a form of elder abuse is occurring. There are many things that can cause an elder to stop taking care of themselves including, dementia, depression, disease, poverty, and isolation.
If you suspect elder abuse or self neglect, there are often local agencies that you can contact to help assist an elder who is not taking care of themselves. Adult Protective Services are duty-bound to investigate every claim of abuse and neglect that is reported to them. They have experience in dealing with self-neglecting elders and have a number of resources available to them to help an elder in need.