State and Statute: New Mexico, Stats. §§ 32A-4-1 et seq.
What Is Reportable “Abuse”: Physical, sexual, sexual exploitation, or emotional, psychological abuse or neglect by a child’s parent, guardian, or custodian. [32A-4-2 and 32A-4-3(A)]
Mandatory Reporters Every person, including clergy, school officials, and school teachers. [32A-4-3(A)]
How and Where to Report: (1) A local law enforcement agency, (2) the children, youth and families department, or (3) tribal law enforcement or social services agencies for any Indian child residing in Indian country. [32A-4-3(A)]
Timeline to Report: Immediately. [32A-4-3(A)]
Clergy Privilege: A “member of the clergy who has information that is not privileged as a matter of law” is required to report. [32A-4-3(A)]
Penalty for Knowingly Failing to Report: Misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment in the county jail for less than one year or to the payment of a fine of not more than $1,000, or both [32A-4-3(F) and 31-19-1(A)]
Civil Liability for Failure to Report Recognized? No statute recognizes civil liability. Consult with legal counsel to ensure no recent court decisions in New Mexico have recognized civil liability.
Immunity for Inaccurate Report: “Anyone reporting an instance of alleged child neglect or abuse … is presumed to be acting in good faith and shall be immune from liability, civil or criminal, that might otherwise be incurred or imposed by the law, unless the person acted in bad faith or with malicious purpose.” [32A-4-5(B)]
Disclosure of Mandatory Reporter’s Identity:: Statutory referrals must keep reporter’s identity confidential absent reporter’s consent or court order. [32A-4-4] Other statutory disclosure of confidential records under specified circumstances must delete reporter’s identity. [32A-4-33(c)]
Additional Information for New Mexico:
- Phone information (toll-free): 1-855-333-7233
- Online resources: https://www.cyfd.nm.gov/protective-services/child-abuse-and-neglect/
All information provided here was most recently verified in March of 2023.