Help Protect Vulnerable Adults: Reporting Concerns

Sensitive Content Warning: The following content discusses sensitive topics including emotional and physical abuse, reporting abuse, and harm to vulnerable adults. 

Information provided by DSHS’ DDA

Do you know how to report abuse? 

Any person can be a victim of abuse. Abuse can come from strangers, caregivers, family members, friends, and others.

Warning Signs of Abuse:

  • Injuries: Suspicious or unexplainable bruises, sores, or weight loss.
  • Behaviors or emotions: change in normal personality.
  • Daily living needs: neglect or inattention to hygiene, clothing, medication, food, or home.
  • Property and finances: unexplainable financial changes or missing money and personal belongings.
  • Verbal aggression: comments or statements that are intimidating, threatening, or degrading.

If you think you or someone you know is being abused or neglected:

To report a crime, physical, or sexual abuse or a life-threatening situation call 911.

Reporting Concerns Involving Vulnerable Adults 

If you suspect harm, you are able to report online or by phone.

The online form is for reporting complaints or concerns involving vulnerable adults residing in licensed long-term care settings (nursing homes, adult family homes, assisted living and enhanced care facilities, ICF/IID, or receiving supported living services) and complaints and concerns involving vulnerable adults residing in the community. You can make reports online seven days a week, 24 hours a day. Once you complete the report, you will receive a confirmation number.

All reports will be screened by Adult Protective Services and/or Residential Care Services. If the person is in immediate danger, call 911. You do not need proof to report suspected abuse and you do not need to give your name.

If you are an employee making a mandated report on behalf of a licensed long-term care facility or certified supported living agency, please complete Residential Care Services Online Report.

When making a report you will be asked to give the person’s name, address, contact information, and details of why you are concerned. You will be asked your name and contact if any investigator has follow-up questions. Unless there is court action, law enforcement has been called, or you have agreed, your identity is confidential.

After making a report, a DSHS staff member may contact you (the reporter) for more information.

For more information, reporting online, and contact information please visit

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