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Child Abuse Reporting

Maryland's highest court ruled that the state child abuse reporting law included a school teacher after school hours who molested a minor while driving her home from school.

Key point 4-08. Every state has a child abuse reporting law that requires persons designated as mandatory reporters to report known or reasonably suspected incidents of child abuse. Ministers are mandatory reporters in many states. Some states exempt ministers from reporting child abuse if they learned of the abuse in the course of a conversation protected by the clergy-penitent privilege. Ministers may face criminal and civil liability for failing to report child abuse.

Maryland's highest court ruled that the state child abuse reporting law which limited reportable abuse to abuse inflicted by parents or "a person responsible for the supervision of a child" included a school teacher after school hours who molested a minor while driving her home from school.

The court's decision provides helpful guidance in the interpretation of reportable child abuse, since many states have ...

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