State Laws. B. Child Abuse Reporting Requirements


1. Inclusion of statutory rape in reporting requirements

Mandated reporters are required to report all cases of suspected child abuse.[270] The definition of child abuse makes specific reference to sexual offenses detailed in the state’s criminal code, including the two described in the previous section.[271],[272] 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

Any individual that suspects a child has been abused must make a report.[273]

3. Who to report to

Mandated reporters must make an oral report to the local child protection service or law enforcement agency immediately after encountering a case of suspected abuse.[274]

4. State response

The local child protection service agency is required to make a written report of suspected abuse within 48 hours of receiving an oral report[275] and forward copies of its report to law enforcement and the district attorney’s office.[276]

If a law enforcement agency receives the initial report, it must immediately inform the local child protection service agency. In all cases of suspected abuse, law enforcement and local child protection service must conduct an onsite investigation in unison.[277]