Mandatory Reporting Laws by State 2023

Alabama

Any person who knows or has reasonable cause to believe or suspect that a child has been abused or neglected or who observes any child being subjected to conditions or circumstances that would reasonably result in abuse shall be required to report orally, either by telephone or direct communication immediately, followed by a written report, to DHR, law enforcement, or the District Attorney.

Alaska

State law (A.S. 47.17. 020) requires that persons who are mandatory reporters who, in the performance of their occupational duties have reasonable cause to suspect that a child has suffered harm as a result of child abuse or neglect, shall immediately report the harm.

Arizona

A report of suspected child abuse, neglect, exploitation, or abandonment is a responsible attempt to protect a child. Arizona law requires certain persons who suspect that a child has received a non-accidental injury or has been neglected to report their concerns to DCS or local law enforcement.

Arkansas

Anyone can report abuse; however, mandated reporters are required by law to report suspected or observed abuse, neglect, or exploitation of endangered or impaired adults. In addition to mandated reporters required to report suspected adult abuse, sexual abuse, or neglect, any other person may make a report if the person has reasonable cause to suspect that an adult has been abused, neglected, or exploited, as defined by the law.

California

Mandated reporters are required to report suspected abuse or neglect by phone as soon as possible and follow up with a completed written report within two days.

Colorado

Mandatory reporters are required by law to report suspected child abuse and neglect. The training educates mandatory reporters on what constitutes abuse and/or neglect, when to call for assistance, and how to make a report. It also explains the process undertaken when a call is received.

Connecticut

Reports must be made within twelve hours of the moment the practitioner suspects the abuse/neglect has occurred. Suspected child maltreatment of any kind, regardless of the identity of the alleged perpetrator must be reported.

Delaware

Delaware law mandates any person, agency, organization, or entity to make an immediate oral report to the Department of Services for Children, Youth and Their Families, a Division of Family Services, when they know of, or suspect, child abuse or neglect.

Florida

Any person who knows, or has reasonable cause to suspect, that a child is abused, abandoned, or neglected by a parent, legal custodian, caregiver, or another person responsible for the child's welfare is a mandatory reporter.

Georgia

Georgia law generally requires those who work with families or who come in contact with children to report suspected child maltreatment.

Hawaii

If a mandated reporter has any reason to believe that child abuse, neglect, or trafficking has occurred, or that a child may be a victim of child abuse, neglect, or trafficking in the future, they must immediately report. Any suspicion is enough to report; you do not need proof.

Idaho

Everyone in Idaho is required to report child abuse, neglect, or abandonment. This includes doctors, hospital residents, therapists, interns, nurses, coroners, school teachers, daycare providers, social workers, relatives, friends, and private citizens.

Illinois

Illinois law requires certain individuals, called mandated reporters, to immediately report suspected child abuse or neglect to the Illinois Department of Child and Family Services (IDCFS). Under the law, all "personnel of institutions of higher education" are mandated reporters and must immediately report any instance where there is reasonable cause to believe that a child known to them in their official capacity may be abused or neglected. This means that all University faculty, other academic appointees, postdoctoral researchers, staff, student employees, and volunteers, regardless of rank or compensation status, are mandated reporters.

Indiana

Any individual who has reason to believe that a child is a victim of child abuse or neglect must make a report. Anonymous reports are accepted. Failure to make a report can be a Class B misdemeanor.

Iowa

Although anyone can report child and dependent adult abuse and is encouraged to do so, mandatory reporters are required by law to make a report of suspected abuse within 24 hours of becoming aware of the concern(s).

Kansas

There are legal penalties if a mandated reporter fails to report suspicions of child abuse or neglect. This is a Class B misdemeanor in Kansas, which can result in a fine of up to $1,000 and/or six months in jail.

Kentucky

Kentucky law requires mandatory reporting of child abuse, neglect, and dependency (KRS 620) and the abuse, neglect, or financial exploitation of adults who have a physical or mental disability and are unable to protect themselves; this might include an elderly person (KRS 209). Reports are typically made to the Cabinet for Health and Family Services.

Louisiana

Any person who, pursuant to Children's Code Article 609(A), is required to report the abuse or neglect of a child and knowingly and willfully fails to so report shall be fined not more than five hundred dollars or imprisoned for not more than six months, or both.

Maine

Any person may make a report if that person knows or has reasonable cause to suspect that a child has been or is likely to be abused or neglected or that there has been a suspicious child death.

Maryland

Under Maryland law, all adults have an obligation to make a report(s) if they have reason to believe that a child has been subjected to abuse or neglect.

Massachusetts

Massachusetts law requires mandated reporters to immediately make an oral report to DCF when, in their professional capacity, they have reasonable cause to believe that a child under the age of 18 years is suffering from abuse and/or neglect. A written report is to be submitted within 48 hours.

Michigan

Michigan Child Protection Law requires certain professionals to report their suspicions of child abuse or neglect to Centralized Intake (CI) at the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS). These people are mandated reporters and have established relationships with children based on their profession.

Minnesota

Under Minnesota mandatory reporter laws, knowledge about any of the following can trigger your obligation to report: Child malnourishment and starvation. Lack of appropriate child care or education. Parent or guardian alcoholism and substance abuse.

Mississippi

Mississippi law requires any person to report reasonable suspicion of child abuse or neglect, vulnerable adult abuse, and human trafficking of minors to the Department of Human Services. State law also mandates reports of abuse, neglect, and exploitation of vulnerable persons.

Missouri

The following adults are mandated (required) to report child abuse and neglect under Missouri law: physician; medical examiner; coroner; dentist; chiropractor; optometrist; podiatrist; resident; intern; nurse; hospital or clinic personnel who are engaged in the examination, care, treatment or research of persons and any other health practitioner; psychologist; mental health professional; social worker; day care center worker or another child-care worker; juvenile officer; probation or parole officer; jail or detention center personnel; teacher; principal or another school official; minister as provided by section 352.400, RSMo; police officer or law enforcement official; and volunteer or personnel of a community service program that offers support services for families in crisis to assist in the delegation of any powers regarding the care and custody of a child by a properly executed power of attorney in accordance with Sections 475.600 to 475.604 RSMo.

Montana

Mandated reporters must report a child who has been abused or neglected as defined by Montana statute 41-3-102 and legal guidance interpreting the statute. "Child abuse or neglect" means actual physical or psychological harm to a child; Substantial risk of physical or psychological harm to a child; or Abandonment.

Nebraska

Nebraska State law requires that any person who believes a child has been or is being abused or neglected make a report. The identity of the person who made the report is confidential and cannot be released. State law also requires that all reports that meet the definition of abuse and neglect are assessed.

Nevada

A mandated reporter who knowingly and willfully fails to report child abuse or neglect is guilty of a misdemeanor for the first violation and a gross misdemeanor for each subsequent violation.

New Hampshire

New Hampshire law mandates that any person who has reason to suspect that a person is being abused or neglected must make a report to the police or State agencies. If you suspect a problem, use the form at the end of this chapter to collect information and report the situation.

New Jersey

In New Jersey, any person having reasonable cause to believe that a child has been subjected to abuse or acts of abuse should immediately report this information to the State Central Registry (SCR).

New Mexico

Section 32A-4-3 of the New Mexico Children’s Code mandates that anyone who has knowledge or a reasonable suspicion that a child is an abused or neglected child must report it immediately. The report may be made to (1) a law enforcement agency; (2) the New Mexico Children, Youth, and Families Department; or (3) a tribal law enforcement or social services agency for any child residing in Indian Country.

New York

Mandated reporters are required to report suspected child abuse or maltreatment when they are presented with a reasonable cause to suspect child abuse or maltreatment in a situation where a child, parent, or another person legally responsible for the child is before the mandated reporter when the mandated reporter is acting in his or her official or professional capacity. “Other person legally responsible" refers to a guardian, caretaker, or other person 18 years of age or older who is responsible for the care of the child. Mandated reporters who are social services workers have expanded reporting requirements. Social services workers are required to report when, in their official or professional role, they are presented with a reasonable cause to suspect child abuse or maltreatment where any person is before the mandated reporter and the mandated reporter is acting in his or her official or professional capacity.

North Carolina

North Carolina has a mandatory reporting law, NCGS § 7B-301 that states "any person or institution who has cause to suspect that any juvenile is abused, neglected, or dependent, as defined by NCGS § 7B-101, or has died as the result of maltreatment, shall report the case of that juvenile to the director of the department of social services in the county where the juvenile resides or is found."

North Dakota

A mandated reporter must report if in an official or professional capacity, he or she: o has knowledge that a vulnerable adult has been subjected to abuse or neglect, or o observes a vulnerable adult being subjected to conditions or circumstances that reasonably would result in abuse or neglect.

Ohio

Certain professionals are mandated by Ohio Law to report if they suspect Child Abuse or Neglect. A Mandated Reporter is a person who works with minor children or adults with Developmental Disabilities ages 18-21 in a professional capacity.

Oklahoma

Any person who knowingly and willfully fails to promptly report abuse, neglect, or exploitation as required per 10A O.S. § 1-2-101 and 43A O.S. § 10-104 may be subject to administrative action or criminal sanctions upon conviction.

Oregon

Mandatory reporters are public and private professionals required by law to report suspected child abuse. Some examples of mandatory reporters include medical practitioners, law enforcement personnel, employees of a public or private organization providing child-related services or activities, public and private school employees, and members of the clergy.

Pennsylvania

Mandated reporters are certain adults, who are legally required to report suspected child abuse if they have reasonable cause to suspect that a child is a victim of child abuse. The law requires that the mandated reporter identify themselves and where they can be reached.

Rhode Island

All persons in Rhode Island are required by law (RIGL §40-11-3) to report known or suspected cases of child abuse and/or neglect to the Department of Children, Youth, and Families within 24 hours of becoming aware of such abuse/neglect.

South Carolina

Mandated reporters must report abuse or neglect when, in their professional capacity, they receive information giving them reason to believe that a child's physical or mental health has been, or may be, adversely affected by abuse or neglect.

South Dakota

A mandatory reporter is an individual or agency who is required by state law to report any instance where he or she has reasonable cause to suspect that a child under the age of 18 has been abused or neglected. Mandatory reporters must report the instance to the state’s attorney of the county in which the child resides or is present, the Department of Social Services (DSS) or law enforcement officers.

Tennessee

Everyone in Tennessee is a mandated reporter under state law. Any person with reasonable cause to believe a child is being abused or neglected must, under the law, immediately report to the Tennessee Department of Children's Services or to local law enforcement. The reporter can remain anonymous.

Texas

A person having reasonable cause to believe that a child's physical or mental health or welfare has been adversely affected by abuse or neglect by any person shall immediately make a report.

Utah

Any person will immediately report abuse, sexual abuse, and sexual exploitation, neglect, maltreatment, or exploitation by contacting the local Regional Office within 24 hours.

Vermont

If you reasonably suspect child abuse or neglect, you are legally required to make a report within 24 hours of the time you first observed, or received information about, the suspected abuse/neglect.

Virginia

Mandated reporters shall report immediately any suspected abuse or neglect that they learn of in their professional or official capacity unless the person has actual knowledge that the same matter has already been reported to the local department.

Washington

Any person who has cause to believe that a child has suffered abuse or neglect should report such incidents. Those people legally required to report child abuse or neglect are medical practitioners, nurses, dentists, social service counselors/therapists, psychologists, medical examiners, pharmacists, school personnel, child care providers, law enforcement officers, juvenile probation officers, corrections employees, DSHS employees, DCYF employees, placement and liaison specialists, responsible living skills program staff, HOPE center staff, state family and children's ombudsman, any volunteer in the ombudsman's office, adults residing with a child suspected to have been severely abused.

West Virginia

Anyone may report suspected abuse, neglect, financial exploitation, or any emergency situation involving a vulnerable adult or facility resident. WV Code §9-6-11 states the report must be made to the Department of Health and Human Resources immediately, but not more than 48 hours after suspecting these circumstances.

Wisconsin

Mandated Reporters are required by law to report child abuse and/or neglect to a county or law enforcement. In addition, Mandated Reporters are required to report threats of school violence to law enforcement.

Wyoming

According to Wyoming law, everyone must report suspected abuse, neglect, or exploitation of a child or vulnerable adult if they have reasonable cause to believe that it may be occurring.

Mandatory Reporting Laws by State 2023