I. In this section:
(a) “Adult” means any person who is 18 years of age or older.
(b) “Caregiver” means any person who has been entrusted with, or has assumed the responsibility voluntarily, by contract, or by order of the court, for frequent and regular care of or services to an elderly, disabled, or impaired adult, including subsistence, medical, custodial, personal or other care, on a temporary or permanent basis. A caregiver shall not include an uncompensated volunteer, unless such person has agreed to provide care and is aware that the person receiving the care is dependent upon the care provided.
(c) “Disabled adult” means an adult who has a diagnosed physical or mental impairment.
(d) “Elderly adult” means an individual who is 60 years of age or older.
(e) “Impaired adult” means any adult who suffers from an impairment by reason of mental illness, developmental disability, organic brain disorder, physical illness or disability, chronic use of drugs, chronic intoxication, memory loss, or other cause, that causes an adult to lack sufficient understanding or capacity to make or communicate reasonable decisions concerning the adult’s person or property or exhibits the functional limitations as defined in RSA 464-A:2, VII. Impaired adult includes a person determined to be vulnerable under RSA 161-F or incapacitated under RSA 464-A.
(f) “Neglect” means the failure or omission on the part of the caregiver to provide the care, supervision, and services which he or she has voluntarily, or by contract, or by order of the court agreed to provide and which are necessary to maintain the health of an elderly, disabled, or impaired adult, including, but not limited to, food, clothing, medicine, shelter, supervision, and medical services, that a prudent person would consider necessary for the well-being of an elderly, disabled, or impaired adult. “Neglect” may be repeated conduct or a single incident.
(g) “Person” means any natural person, corporation, trust, partnership, unincorporated association, or any other legal entity.
(h) “Serious bodily injury” means serious bodily injury as defined in RSA 625:11, VI.
(i) “Undue influence” means the intentional use, by a person in a position of trust and confidence with an elderly, disabled, or impaired adult, of that position to obtain an unfair advantage over the elderly, disabled, or impaired adult, through actions or tactics, including, but not limited to, emotional, psychological, and legal manipulation.
II. Any caregiver who purposely causes serious bodily injury to an elderly, disabled, or impaired adult by neglect shall be guilty of a class A felony.
III. Any caregiver who knowingly or recklessly causes serious bodily injury to an elderly, disabled, or impaired adult by neglect shall be guilty of a class B felony.
IV. Nothing in this section shall be construed to alter or impair a person’s right to self-determination or right to refuse medical treatment as described in RSA 151:21 and RSA 151:21-b.
V. Nothing in this section shall be construed to mean a person is abused, neglected, exploited, or in need of protective services for the sole reason that such person relies on or is being furnished treatment by spiritual means alone through prayer, in accordance with the tenets and practices of a church or religious denomination of which such person is a member or an adherent.
VI. Nothing in this section shall be construed to impose criminal liability on a person who has made a good faith effort to provide for the care of an elderly, disabled, or impaired adult, but through no fault of his or her own, has been unable to provide such care, or on a person who is carrying out the lawful request of an elderly or disabled adult who is competent to make his or her own decisions.
Source. 2002, 226:1. 2014, 151:2, 3, eff. Jan. 1, 2015. 2016, 59:8, eff. July 4, 2016.
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