"He’s a ward of the state"

A ward of the state is a child or adult placed under the protection of the court, meaning that the court makes legal and medical decisions on behalf of that person. A government agency will usually be appointed to oversee the ward’s affairs. An orphan under the care of a government welfare agency, a person with mental illness or one who is mentally or physically incapacitated enough to need caring for in a government institution, and in some cases indigenous peoples (in Canada for instance), might become wards of the state.