Child Abuse Defined M-N

Maryland

Definitions of Child Abuse and Neglect

To better understand this issue and to view it across States, download the PDF (924 KB) of this publication.

Current Through March 2019

Physical Abuse

‘Abuse’ means either of the following:

  • The physical or mental injury of a child under circumstances that indicate that the child’s health or welfare is harmed or at substantial risk of being harmed by any of the following:
    • A parent
    • A household member or family member
    • A person who has permanent or temporary care or custody of the child
    • A person who has responsibility for supervision of the child
    • A person who, because of the person’s position or occupation, exercises authority over the child
  • Sexual abuse of a child, whether physical injuries are sustained or not

‘Abuse’ does not include the physical injury of a child by accidental means.

 

Neglect

‘Neglect’ means leaving a child unattended or other failure to give proper care and attention to a child by any parent or other person who has permanent or temporary care or custody or responsibility for supervision of the child under circumstances that indicate either of the following:

  • That the child’s health or welfare is harmed or placed at substantial risk of harm
  • Mental injury to the child or a substantial risk of mental injury

 

Sexual Abuse/Exploitation

‘Sex trafficking’ means the recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, obtaining, patronizing, or soliciting of a child for the purpose of a commercial sex act.

‘Sexual abuse’ means any act that involves the following:

  • Sexual molestation or exploitation of a child by any of the following:
    • A parent
    • A household member or family member
    • A person who has permanent or temporary care or custody of the child
    • A person who has responsibility for supervision of the child
    • A person who, because of the person’s position or occupation, exercises authority over the child
  • Sex trafficking of a child by any individual

‘Sexual molestation or exploitation’ includes any of the following:

  • Allowing or encouraging a child to engage in any of the following:
    • Obscene photography, films, poses, or similar activity
    • Pornographic photography, films, poses, or similar activity
    • Prostitution
  • Incest
  • Rape
  • A sexual offense in any degree
  • Sodomy
  • Unnatural or perverted sexual practices

 

Emotional Abuse

‘Mental injury’ means the observable, identifiable, and substantial impairment of a child’s mental or psychological ability to function that was caused by an intentional act or series of acts, regardless of whether there was an intent to harm the child.

 

Abandonment

 

This issue is not addressed in the statutes reviewed.

 

Standards for Reporting

Citation: Fam. Law § 5-704
A report is required when a mandatory reporter has reason to believe that a child has been subjected to abuse or neglect.

 

Persons Responsible for the Child

‘Responsible person’ includes any of the following:

  • A parent
  •  A household member or family member
  • A person who has permanent or temporary care or custody of the child
  • A person who has responsibility for supervision of the child
  • A person who, because of the person’s position or occupation, exercises authority over the child

The term ‘family member’ means a relative of a child by blood, adoption, or marriage. ‘Household member’ means a person who lives with or is a regular presence in a home of a child at the time of the alleged abuse or neglect.

 

Exceptions

 

No exceptions are specified in statute.

 

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Massachusetts

Definitions of Child Abuse and Neglect

To better understand this issue and to view it across States, download the PDF (924 KB) of this publication.

Current Through March 2019

Physical Abuse

‘Abuse’ means the nonaccidental commission of any act by a caregiver upon a child under age 18 that causes or creates a substantial risk of physical or emotional injury, or constitutes a sexual offense under the laws of the Commonwealth, or any sexual contact between a caregiver and a child under the care of that individual.

‘Physical injury’ means any of the following:

  • Death
  • Fracture of a bone, a subdural hematoma, burns, impairment of any organ, and any other such nontrivial injury
  • Soft tissue swelling or skin bruising depending upon such factors as the child’s age, circumstances under which the injury occurred, and the number and location of bruises
  • Addiction to a drug at birth
  • Failure to thrive

 

Neglect

‘Neglect’ means failure by a caregiver, either deliberately or through negligence or inability, to take those actions necessary to provide a child with minimally adequate food, clothing, shelter, medical care, supervision, emotional stability, and growth, or other essential care.

 

Sexual Abuse/Exploitation

A ‘child requiring assistance’ is a child between the ages of 6 and 18 who is a sexually exploited child. A ‘sexually exploited child’ is any person younger than age 18 who has been subjected to sexual exploitation because such person:

  • Is the victim of the crime of sexual servitude, pursuant to chapter 265, § 50, or is the victim of the crime of sex trafficking, as defined in 22 U.S.C. § 7105
  • Engages, agrees to engage, or offers to engage in sexual conduct with another person in return for a fee or in exchange for food, shelter, clothing, education, or care
  • Is a victim of the crime, whether or not prosecuted, of inducing a minor into prostitution
  • Engages in common night walking or common streetwalking

In regulation: The term ‘abuse’ includes a sexual offense under the laws of the Commonwealth or any sexual contact between a caregiver and a child under the care of that individual.

 

Emotional Abuse

‘Emotional injury’ means an impairment to or disorder of the intellectual or psychological capacity of a child as evidenced by observable and substantial reduction in the child’s ability to function within a normal range of performance and behavior.

 

Abandonment

Citation: Ann. Laws Ch. 119, § 39
‘Abandonment’ of an infant under age 10 occurs when:

  • A person leaves the child within or without any building.
  • A parent or other person who has a legal duty to care for the child, having made a contract for the child’s board or maintenance, absconds or fails to perform such contract and for 4 weeks after such absconding or breach of contract, if of sufficient physical and mental ability, neglects to visit or remove the child or notify the department of his or her inability to support the child.

 

Standards for Reporting

Citation: Ann. Laws Ch. 119, § 51A
A report is required when a mandatory reporter who, in his or her professional capacity, has reasonable cause to believe that a child is suffering physical or emotional injury resulting from any of the following:

  • Abuse inflicted upon the child that causes harm or substantial risk of harm to the child’s health or welfare, including sexual abuse
  • Neglect, including malnutrition
  • Physical dependence upon an addictive drug at birth
  • Being a sexually exploited child
  • Being a human trafficking victim

 

Persons Responsible for the Child

Responsible persons include the parent and any other person responsible for the child’s care.

In regulation: The term ‘caretaker’ (caregiver) means:

  • A child’s parent, stepparent, or guardian
  • Any household member entrusted with the responsibility for a child’s health or welfare
  • Any other person entrusted with the responsibility for a child’s health or welfare, whether in the child’s home, a relative’s home, a school setting, a daycare setting (including babysitting), a foster home, a group care facility, or any other comparable setting

The term ‘caretaker’ includes, but is not limited to, school teachers, babysitters, school bus drivers, camp counselors, etc. The ‘caretaker’ definition is meant to be construed broadly and inclusively to encompass any person who is, at the time in question, entrusted with a degree of responsibility for the child. This specifically includes a caregiver who is him/herself a child (e.g., a babysitter under age 18).

 

Exceptions

It is not considered neglect when the inability to care for the child is due solely to inadequate economic resources or solely to the existence of a handicapping condition.

 

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Michigan

Definitions of Child Abuse and Neglect

To better understand this issue and to view it across States, download the PDF (924 KB) of this publication.

Current Through March 2019

Physical Abuse

‘Child abuse’ means harm or threatened harm to a child’s health or welfare that occurs through nonaccidental physical or mental injury, sexual abuse, sexual exploitation, or maltreatment by a parent, a legal guardian, or any other person responsible for the child’s health or welfare or by a teacher, a teacher’s aide, or a member of the clergy.

‘Severe physical injury’ means an injury to the child that requires medical treatment or hospitalization and that seriously impairs the child’s health or physical well-being.

 

Neglect

‘Child neglect’ means harm or threatened harm to a child’s health or welfare, by a parent, legal guardian, or any other person responsible for the child’s health or welfare, that occurs through either of the following:

  • Negligent treatment, including the failure to provide adequate food, clothing, shelter, or medical care, though financially able to do so, or by the failure to seek financial or other reasonable means to provide adequate food, clothing, shelter, or medical care
  • Placing a child at an unreasonable risk to the child’s health or welfare by failure to intervene to eliminate that risk when the parent, legal guardian, or other person responsible for the child’s health or welfare is able to do so and has, or should have, knowledge of the risk

 

Sexual Abuse/Exploitation

‘Sexual abuse’ means engaging in sexual contact or sexual penetration with a child as those terms are defined in the penal code.

‘Sexual exploitation’ includes allowing, permitting, or encouraging a child to engage in prostitution, or allowing, permitting, encouraging, or engaging in photographing, filming, or depicting a child engaged in a sexual act.

 

Emotional Abuse

The term ‘child abuse’ includes mental injury.

 

Abandonment

 

This issue is not addressed in the statutes reviewed.

 

Standards for Reporting

Citation: Comp. Laws § 722.623
A report is required when a mandatory reporter has reasonable cause to suspect child abuse or neglect.

 

Persons Responsible for the Child

A ‘person responsible for the child’s health or welfare’ means a parent; legal guardian; person age 18 or older who resides for any length of time in the same home as the child; nonparent adult; or an owner, operator, volunteer, or employee of one or more of the following:

  • A licensed or registered child care organization
  • A licensed or unlicensed adult foster care family home or adult foster care small group home
  • A court-operated facility

‘Nonparent adult’ means a person who is age 18 or older and who, regardless of the person’s domicile, meets all of the following criteria in relation to a child:

  • Has substantial and regular contact with the child
  • Has a close personal relationship with the child’s parent or with a person responsible for the child’s health or welfare
  • Is not the child’s parent or a person otherwise related to the child by blood or affinity to the third degree

 

Exceptions

A parent or guardian legitimately practicing his or her religious beliefs who thereby does not provide specified medical treatment for a child, for that reason alone, shall not be considered a negligent parent or guardian. This section shall not preclude a court from ordering the provision of medical services or nonmedical remedial services recognized by State law to a child when the child’s health requires it nor does it abrogate the responsibility of a person required to report child abuse or neglect.

 

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Minnesota

Definitions of Child Abuse and Neglect

To better understand this issue and to view it across States, download the PDF (924 KB) of this publication.

Current Through March 2019

Physical Abuse

‘Physical abuse’ means any physical injury, mental injury, or threatened injury inflicted by a person responsible for the child’s care on a child by other than accidental means; physical or mental injury that cannot reasonably be explained by the child’s history of injuries; or any aversive and deprivation procedures or regulated interventions that have not been authorized by law. Physical abuse includes, but is not limited to, any of the following acts:

  • Throwing, kicking, burning, biting, or cutting a child
  • Striking a child with a closed fist
  • Shaking a child under age 3
  • Striking or other actions that result in any nonaccidental injury to a child under 18 months
  • Unreasonable interference with a child’s breathing
  • Threatening a child with a weapon
  • Striking a child under age 1 on the face or head
  • Striking a child who is at least age 1 but under age 4 on the face or head, which results in an injury
  • Purposely giving a child poison, alcohol, or dangerous, harmful, or controlled substances that were not prescribed for the child by a practitioner, in order to control or punish the child; giving the child substances that substantially affect the child’s behavior, motor coordination, or judgment or that result in sickness or internal injury; or subjecting the child to medical procedures that would be unnecessary if the child were not exposed to the substances
  • Unreasonable physical confinement or restraint not permitted by law, including, but not limited to, tying, caging, or chaining
  • In a school facility or school zone, an act by a person responsible for the child’s care that is a violation under § 121A.58 (prohibiting corporal punishment)

‘Substantial child endangerment’ means a person responsible for a child’s care, by act or omission, commits or attempts to commit an act against a child under their care that constitutes any of the following:

    • Egregious harm, as defined in § 260C.007, subd. 14
    • Murder in the first, second, or third degree or manslaughter in the first or second degree
    • Assault in the first, second, or third degree
    • Malicious punishment or neglect or endangerment of a child
    • Parental behavior, status, or condition that mandates that the county attorney file a termination of parental rights petition under § 260C.503, subd. 2

 

Neglect

‘Neglect’ means the commission or omission of any of the acts specified below by other than accidental means:

      • Failure by a person responsible for a child’s care to supply a child with necessary food, clothing, shelter, health, medical, or other care required for the child’s physical or mental health when reasonably able to do so
      • Failure to protect a child from conditions or actions that seriously endanger the child’s physical or mental health when reasonably able to do so, including a growth delay (which may be referred to as failure to thrive) that has been diagnosed by a physician and is due to parental neglect
      • Failure to provide necessary supervision or child care arrangements appropriate for a child after considering such factors as the child’s age, mental ability, physical condition, length of absence, or environment when the child is unable to care for his or her own basic needs or safety or the basic needs or safety of another child in his or her care
      • Failure to ensure that the child is educated as required by State law, which does not include a parent’s refusal to provide his or her child with sympathomimetic medications
      • Prenatal exposure to a controlled substance used by the mother for a nonmedical purpose, as evidenced by withdrawal symptoms in the child at birth, results of a toxicology test performed on the mother at delivery or the child at birth, or medical effects or developmental delays during the child’s first year of life that medically indicate prenatal exposure to a controlled substance, or the presence of a fetal alcohol spectrum disorder
      • ‘Medical neglect’ that includes, but is not limited to, withholding medically indicated treatment from a disabled infant with a life-threatening condition
      • Chronic and severe use of alcohol or a controlled substance by a parent or person responsible for the care of the child that adversely affects the child’s basic needs and safety

‘Substantial child endangerment’ means a person responsible for a child’s care, by act or omission, commits or attempts to commit an act against a child under their care that constitutes any of the following:

      • Abandonment under § 260C.301, subd. 2
      • Neglect that substantially endangers the child’s physical or mental health, including a growth delay (which may be referred to as failure to thrive) that has been diagnosed by a physician and is due to parental neglect

 

Sexual Abuse/Exploitation

‘Sexual abuse’ means the subjection of a child to any act that constitutes criminal sexual conduct by a person responsible for the child’s care, a person who has a significant relationship to the child, or a person in a position of authority. ‘Sexual abuse’ includes any act that involves a minor that constitutes a violation of prostitution offenses. ‘Sexual abuse’ also includes threatened sexual abuse, including the status of a parent or household member who has committed a violation that requires registration as a predatory offender.

Effective May 29, 2017, ‘sexual abuse’ includes all reports of known or suspected child sex trafficking involving a child who is identified as a victim of sex trafficking.

‘Substantial child endangerment’ means a person responsible for a child’s care, by act or omission, commits or attempts to commit an act against a child under their care that constitutes any of the following:

      • Solicitation, inducement, and promotion of prostitution under § 609.322
      • Criminal sexual conduct under §§ 609.342 to 609.3451
      •  Solicitation of children to engage in sexual conduct under § 609.352
      • Use of a minor in sexual performance under § 617.246

‘Sexually exploited youth’ means an individual who:

      • Is alleged to have engaged in conduct that would, if committed by an adult, violate any Federal, State, or local law relating to being hired, offering to be hired, or agreeing to be hired by another individual to engage in sexual penetration or sexual conduct
      • Is a victim of the crime of criminal sexual conduct, criminal sexual predatory conduct, use of minors in sexual performances, or possession of child pornography
      • Is a victim of the Federal offenses of child pornography or child sex trafficking
      • Is a sex trafficking victim

 

Emotional Abuse

‘Emotional maltreatment’ means the consistent, deliberate infliction of mental harm on a child by a person responsible for the child’s care that has an observable, sustained, and adverse effect on the child’s physical, mental, or emotional development.

‘Mental injury’ means an injury to the psychological capacity or emotional stability of a child as evidenced by an observable or substantial impairment in the child’s ability to function within a normal range of performance and behavior with due regard to the child’s culture.

‘Neglect’ includes emotional harm from a pattern of behavior that contributes to impaired emotional functioning of the child that may be demonstrated by a substantial and observable effect in the child’s behavior, emotional response, or cognition that is not within the normal range for the child’s age and stage of development, with due regard to the child’s culture.

 

Abandonment

Citation: Ann. Stat. §§ 260C.007, Subd. 6; 260C.301, Subd. 2
The term ‘child in need of protection or services’ means a child who is in need of protection or services because he or she is abandoned or without a parent, guardian, or custodian.

Abandonment is presumed when either of the following applies:

      • The parent has had no contact with the child on a regular basis and has not demonstrated consistent interest in the child’s well-being for 6 months and the social services agency has made reasonable efforts to facilitate contact, unless the parent establishes that an extreme financial or physical hardship or treatment for mental disability or chemical dependency or other good cause prevented the parent from making contact with the child.
      • The child is an infant under age 2 and has been deserted by the parent under circumstances that show an intent not to return to care for the child.

 

Standards for Reporting

Citation: Ann. Stat. § 626.556, Subd. 3
A report is required when a mandatory reporter knows or has reason to believe a child is being neglected or physically or sexually abused or has been neglected or physically or sexually abused within the preceding 3 years.

 

Persons Responsible for the Child

‘Person responsible for the child’s care’ means the following:

      • An individual functioning within the family unit and having responsibilities for the care of the child, such as a parent, guardian, or other person having similar care responsibilities
      • An individual functioning outside the family unit and having responsibilities for the care of the child, such as a teacher, school administrator, other school employees or agents, or other lawful custodian of a child having either full-time or short-term care responsibilities including, but not limited to, daycare, babysitting (paid or unpaid), counseling, teaching, and coaching

‘Family or household members’ means spouses, former spouses, parents and children, persons related by blood, persons who are presently residing together or who have resided together in the past, and persons who have a child in common regardless of whether they have been married or have lived together at any time.

 

Exceptions

A child is not considered neglected solely because the child’s parent, guardian, or other person responsible for the child’s care in good faith selects and depends upon spiritual means or prayer for treatment or care of disease or remedial care of the child in lieu of medical care. A parent, guardian, caregiver, or a mandatory reporter has a duty to report if a lack of medical care may cause serious danger to the child’s health.

Persons who are not otherwise legally responsible for providing a child with necessary food, clothing, shelter, education, or medical care do not have a duty to provide that care.

Persons who conduct assessments or investigations under this section shall take into account accepted child-rearing practices of the culture in which a child participates and accepted teacher discipline practices that are not injurious to the child’s health, welfare, and safety.

Abuse does not include reasonable and moderate physical discipline of a child administered by a parent or legal guardian that does not result in an injury.

Abuse does not include the use of reasonable force by a teacher, principal, or school employee, as allowed by § 121A.582.

Emotional maltreatment does not include reasonable training or discipline administered by the person responsible for the child’s care or the reasonable exercise of authority by that person.

 

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Mississippi

Definitions of Child Abuse and Neglect

To better understand this issue and to view it across States, download the PDF (924 KB) of this publication.

Current Through March 2019

Physical Abuse

‘Abused child’ means a child whose parent, guardian, custodian, or any person responsible for his or her care or support, whether or not legally obligated to do so, has caused or allowed to be caused upon the child nonaccidental physical injury or other maltreatment. The term ‘abused child’ also means a child who is or has been trafficked within the meaning of the Mississippi Human Trafficking Act by any person, without regard to the relationship of the person to the child.

 

Neglect

‘Neglected child’ means a child to whom any of the following apply:

  • Whose parent, guardian, custodian, or any person responsible for his or her care or support neglects or, when able to do so, refuses to provide proper and necessary care or support; education as required by law; or medical, surgical, or other care necessary for his or her well-being
  • Who is otherwise without proper care, custody, supervision, or support
  • Who, for any reason, lacks the special care made necessary for him or her by reason of his or her mental condition, whether said mental condition be mentally retarded or mentally ill
  • Who, for any reason, lacks the care necessary for his or her health, morals, or well-being

 

Sexual Abuse/Exploitation

The term ‘abused child’ includes sexual abuse or sexual exploitation.

‘Sexual abuse’ means obscene or pornographic photographing, filming, or depiction of children for commercial purposes or the rape, molestation, incest, prostitution, or other such forms of sexual exploitation of children under circumstances that indicate that the child’s health or welfare is harmed or threatened.

 

Emotional Abuse

The term ‘abused child’ includes emotional abuse or mental injury.

 

Abandonment

 

This issue is not addressed in the statutes reviewed.

 

Standards for Reporting

Citation: Ann. Code § 43-21-353
A report is required when a mandatory reporter has reasonable cause to suspect that a child is abused or neglected.

 

Persons Responsible for the Child

Responsible persons include the following:

  • A parent, guardian, or custodian
  • ‘Any person responsible for care or support,’ which refers to the person who is providing for the child at a given time, including, but not limited to, stepparents, foster parents, relatives, nonlicensed babysitters or other similar persons responsible for a child, and staff of residential care facilities and group homes licensed by the department

 

Exceptions

A parent who withholds medical treatment from any child who in good faith is under treatment by spiritual means alone through prayer, in accordance with the tenets and practices of a recognized church or religious denomination by a duly accredited practitioner thereof, shall not, for that reason alone, be considered to be neglectful.

Physical discipline, including spanking, performed on a child by a parent, guardian, or custodian in a reasonable manner shall not be deemed abuse under this section.

 

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Missouri

Definitions of Child Abuse and Neglect

To better understand this issue and to view it across States, download the PDF (924 KB) of this publication.

Current Through March 2019

Physical Abuse

‘Abuse’ means any physical injury inflicted on a child by other than accidental means by those responsible for the child’s care, custody, and control.

 

Neglect

‘Neglect’ means failure to provide, by those responsible for the care, custody, and control of the child, proper or necessary support; education as required by law; nutrition; or medical, surgical, or any other care necessary for the child’s well-being.

 

Sexual Abuse/Exploitation

The term ‘abuse’ includes sexual abuse. Victims of neglect also shall include any victims of sex trafficking or severe forms of trafficking, as those terms are defined in Federal law.

 

Emotional Abuse

The term ‘abuse’ includes emotional abuse inflicted on a child by those responsible for the child’s care, custody, and control.

 

Abandonment

 

This issue is not addressed in the statutes reviewed.

 

Standards for Reporting

Citation: Ann. Stat. § 210.115
A report is required when a mandatory reporter has reasonable cause to suspect that a child has been or may be subjected to abuse or neglect or observes a child being subjected to conditions or circumstances that would reasonably result in abuse or neglect.

 

Persons Responsible for the Child

The term ‘those responsible for the care, custody, and control of the child’ includes, but is not limited to, the following:

  • The parents or legal guardians of a child
  • Other members of the child’s household
  • Anyone exercising supervision over a child for any part of a 24-hour day
  • Any person who has access to the child, based on a relationship to the parents of the child, members of the child’s household, or the family
  • Any person who takes control of the child by deception, force, or coercion

 

Exceptions

Discipline, including spanking, administered in a reasonable manner, shall not be considered abuse.

A child who does not receive specified medical treatment by reason of the legitimate practice of the religious belief of the child’s parents, guardian, or others legally responsible for the child shall not be found to be an abused or neglected child for that reason alone.

The division may accept reports concerning such a child and may subsequently investigate or conduct a family assessment as a result of that report. This exception shall not limit the administrative or judicial authority of the State to ensure that medical services are provided to the child when the child’s health requires it.

 

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Montana

Definitions of Child Abuse and Neglect

To better understand this issue and to view it across States, download the PDF (924 KB) of this publication.

Current Through March 2019

Physical Abuse

‘Physical abuse’ means an intentional act, omission, or gross negligence resulting in substantial skin bruising, internal bleeding, substantial injury to skin, subdural hematoma, burns, bone fractures, extreme pain, permanent or temporary disfigurement, impairment of any bodily organ or function, or death.

‘Child abuse or neglect’ means any of the following:

  • Actual physical or psychological harm to a child
  • Substantial risk of physical or psychological harm to a child
  • Abandonment

The term includes the following:

  • Actual physical or psychological harm to a child, or substantial risk of physical or psychological harm to a child, by the acts or omissions of a person responsible for the child’s welfare
  • Exposing a child to the criminal distribution of dangerous drugs, the criminal production or manufacture of dangerous drugs, or the operation of an unlawful clandestine laboratory

‘Physical or psychological harm to a child’ means the harm that occurs whenever the parent or other person responsible for the child’s welfare inflicts or allows to be inflicted upon the child physical abuse, physical neglect, or psychological abuse or neglect.

 

Neglect

‘Physical neglect’ means any of the following:

  • Failure to provide basic necessities, including, but not limited to, appropriate and adequate nutrition, protective shelter from the elements, and appropriate clothing related to weather conditions
  • Failure to provide cleanliness and general supervision
  • Exposing or allowing the child to be exposed to an unreasonable physical or psychological risk

‘Physical or psychological harm to a child’ means the harm that occurs whenever the parent or other person responsible for the child’s welfare does any of the following:

  • Causes malnutrition, failure to thrive, or otherwise fails to supply the child with adequate food; fails to supply clothing, shelter, education, or adequate health care, though financially able to do so or when offered financial or other reasonable means to do so
  • Exposes the child, or allows the child to be exposed, to an unreasonable risk to the child’s health or welfare by failing to intervene or eliminate the risk

‘Withholding of medically indicated treatment’ means failure to respond to an infant’s life-threatening conditions by not providing treatment, including appropriate nutrition, hydration, and medication, that in the treating physician’s or physicians’ reasonable medical judgment is most likely to be effective in ameliorating or correcting the conditions.

 

Sexual Abuse/Exploitation

‘Sexual abuse’ means the commission of sexual assault, sexual intercourse without consent, indecent exposure, deviate sexual conduct, ritual abuse, or incest.

‘Sexual exploitation’ means allowing, permitting, or encouraging a child to engage in a prostitution offense or allowing, permitting, or encouraging sexual abuse of children.

‘Physical or psychological harm to a child’ means the harm that occurs whenever a parent or other person responsible for the child’s welfare commits or allows sexual abuse or exploitation of the child.

 

Emotional Abuse

‘Psychological abuse or neglect’ means severe maltreatment through acts or omissions that are injurious to the child’s emotional, intellectual, or psychological capacity to function, including acts of violence against another person residing in the child’s home.

‘Physical or psychological harm to a child’ means the harm that occurs whenever a parent or other person responsible for a child’s welfare induces or attempts to induce the child to give untrue testimony that the child or another child was abused or neglected by a parent or other person responsible for the child’s welfare.

 

Abandonment

Citation: Ann. Code § 41-3-102
‘Abandon,’ ‘abandoned,’ and ‘abandonment’ mean any of the following:

  • Leaving a child under circumstances that make reasonable the belief that the parent does not intend to resume care of the child in the future
  • Willfully surrendering physical custody for a period of 6 months and during that period not manifesting to the child and the person having physical custody of the child a firm intention to resume physical custody or to make permanent legal arrangements for the care of the child
  • That the parent is unknown and has been unknown for a period of 90 days and that reasonable efforts to identify and locate the parent have failed
  • The voluntary surrender, as defined in § 40-6-402, by a parent of a newborn who is no more than 30 days old, to an emergency services provider

‘Physical or psychological harm to a child’ means the harm that occurs when the parent or other person responsible for the child’s welfare abandons the child.

 

Standards for Reporting

Citation: Ann. Code § 41-3-201
A report is required when a mandatory reporter knows or has reasonable cause to suspect, as a result of information they receive in their professional or official capacity, that a child is abused or neglected by anyone regardless of whether the person suspected of causing the abuse or neglect is a parent or other person responsible for the child’s welfare.

 

Persons Responsible for the Child

‘A person responsible for a child’s welfare’ includes any of the following:

  •  The child’s parent, guardian, foster parent, or an adult who resides in the same home as the child
  • A person providing care in a daycare facility
  • An employee of a public or private residential institution, facility, home, or agency
  • Any other person responsible for the child’s welfare in a residential setting

 

Exceptions

The term ‘abandoned’ does not include the voluntary surrender of the child to the department solely because of parental inability to access publicly funded services.

The term ‘child abuse’ does not include self-defense, defense of others, or action taken to prevent the child from self-harm.

This chapter may not be construed to require or justify a finding of child abuse or neglect for the sole reason that a parent or legal guardian, because of religious beliefs, does not provide adequate health care for a child. This chapter may not be construed to limit the administrative or judicial authority of the State to ensure that medical care is provided to the child when there is imminent substantial risk of serious harm to the child.

The term ‘withholding medically indicated treatment’ does not include the failure to provide treatment, other than appropriate nutrition, hydration, or medication to an infant when, in the treating physician’s or physicians’ reasonable medical judgment, the following apply:

  • The infant is chronically and irreversibly comatose.
  • The provision of treatment would merely prolong dying, not be effective in ameliorating or correcting all of the infant’s life-threatening conditions, or otherwise be futile in terms of the survival of the infant.
  • The provision of treatment would be virtually futile in terms of the survival of the infant, and the treatment itself under the circumstances would be inhumane.

 

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  • showme on February 9, 2021 @ 21:53:47

This post was created by support on January 1, 2021.