Clergy as Mandatory Reporters of Child Abuse and Neglect - Montana
The Requirement for Clergy to Report
Citation: Ann. Code §§ 41-3-201; 15-6-201(2)(b)
Professionals and officials required to report include members of the clergy as defined in 15-6-201(2)(b).
The term 'clergy' means any of the following:
- An ordained minister, priest, or rabbi
- A commissioned or licensed minister of a church or church denomination that ordains ministers if the person has the authority to perform substantially all the religious duties of the church or denomination
- A member of a religious order who has taken a vow of poverty
- A Christian Science practitioner
Citation: Ann. Code § 41-3-201
A member of the clergy or priest is not required to report under this section if any of the following apply:
- The knowledge or suspicion of the abuse or neglect came from a statement or confession made to the member of the clergy or priest in that person's capacity as a member of the clergy or priest.
- The statement was intended to be a part of a confidential communication between the member of the clergy or the priest and a member of the church or congregation.
- The person who made the statement or confession does not consent to the disclosure by the member of the clergy or priest.
A member of the clergy or priest is not required to make a report under this section if the communication is required to be confidential by canon law, church doctrine, or established church practice.