State Laws. B. Child Abuse Reporting Requirements

09/25/2000

1. Inclusion of statutory rape in reporting requirements

Mandated reporters are required to report of all cases in which they suspect a child under 18 years of age has been the victim of abuse.[239] Although the sexual offenses defined in the criminal code are not specifically referenced, the definition of abuse contains specific reference to sexual conduct, including rape and molestation.[240] The reporting requirement does not include any provisions that indicate that it applies only to parents, guardians, or custodians of the child in question.

2. Mandatory reporters

Mandatory reporters include: any physical or mental health provider, school teacher, day care personnel, social worker, or other person having reason to believe that a child under 18 years of age has been abused. Clergy members who learn of abuse through confidential communication are exempted from reporting requirements.[241]

3. Who to report to

Mandated reporters are required to inform the Department of Health and Welfare or law enforcement within 24 hours of encountering a case of suspected abuse.[242]

4. State response

Law enforcement must notify the Department of Health and Welfare of any reports of alleged abuse that it receives.[243]