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.
Failure to Report Child Abuse
A federal appeals court ruled that a church was not liable for a minister's acts of child molestation on the basis of a failure to comply with the state child abuse reporting law since ministers were not mandatory reporters at the time of the abuse and the church had no reason to suspect that the minister was engaging in such acts.
An adult male (Randy) sued a church and diocese claiming that ...