There are a number of organizations offering help in this area. Explore the links below.
Vermont Attorney General
The office of the Vermont Attorney General can try to help you resolve a complaint about a business that you purchased from. While this is not a formal legal process, it does often help.
Vermont Ethics Network
Visit www.vtethicsnetwork.org for forms and information about topics such as Advance Care Directives, the right to refuse treatment, physican-asssisted death, and other topics in medical decision-making and medical ethics.
Adult Protective Services
Adult Protective Services (APS) is part of the Division of Licensing and Protection, within the Vermont Department of Disabilities, Aging and Independent Living. APS is responsible for investigating allegations of abuse, neglect and exploitation of vulnerable adults. They also provide education and referrals.
Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program
Under the Vermont Dept. of Disabilities and Aging, the ombudsmen’s primary responsibility is to investigate and resolve complaints on behalf of Vermonters who are in nursing homes, in residential care homes, or using Choices for Care. They also provide information and consultations to individuals and organizations.
Office of Public Guardian
Under the Vermont Dept. of Disabilities and Aging, the Office of Public Guardian provides public guardianship where there is no friend or family member to serve as guardian. The Office of Public Guardian is also available to provide information to the public about guardianship and its alternatives, and to assist private guardians in understanding and carrying out their duties.
Vermont Legal Aid & Legal Service Vermont
These two organizations work together to provide legal assistance to low-income Vermonters and those with disabilities.
The VLA website has a directory that shows how to get help with specific issues. Click here to explore:
To get a legal consultation, Legal Service Vermont is your first point of contact. They screen requests for help, and then refer the client to a lawyer or advocate at either Vermont Legal Aid or Legal Services Vermont. They also refer clients to other programs. Their website is at https://www.legalservicesvt.org/
VLA does not handle criminal cases. There is no charge for services. Below are a few examples of the legal issues VLA can help with.
- Family matters, housing & utilities, public benefits, healthcare issues, financial, and help for victims of crime and domestic violence.
- Senior Citizens Law Project: Public health benefits, guardianship, powers of attorney, wills, nursing home/residential care home issues and elder abuse, neglect and financial exploitation.
- Disability Law Project: Special education, guardianship, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Medicaid, accessibility, discrimination (employment, housing, government services, private business), access to assistive technology, and abuse or neglect.
- Client Assistance Program: confidential assistance to people with disabilities who experience problems when applying for or receiving services from the following agencies: Division of Vocational Rehabilitation; Division for the Blind and Visually Impaired; Vermont Center for Independent Living; Vermont Association of Business, Industry, & Rehabilitation; Supported Employment; or Transition Programs.