Mandatory Reporting of Child Abuse and Neglect - New York

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Professionals Required to Report
Citation: Soc. Serv. Law § 413

The following persons and officials are required to report:

  • Physicians, physician assistants, surgeons, medical examiners, coroners, dentists, dental hygienists, osteopaths, optometrists, chiropractors, podiatrists, residents, interns, psychologists, registered nurses, social workers, or emergency medical technicians
  • Licensed creative arts therapists, marriage and family therapists, mental health counselors, or psychoanalysts
  • Hospital personnel or Christian Science practitioners
  • School officials, including, but not limited to, teachers, guidance counselors, school psychologists, school social workers, school nurses, or administrators
  • Full- or part-time compensated school employees required to hold temporary coaching licenses or professional coaching certificates
  • Social services workers, daycare center workers, providers of family or group family daycare, or any other child care or foster care worker
  • Employees of publicly-funded emergency shelters for families with children
  • Directors of children's overnight camps, summer day camps, or traveling summer day camps
  • Employees or volunteers in residential care facilities for children that are licensed, certified, or operated by the Office of Children and Family Services
  • Mental health professionals, substance abuse counselors, alcoholism counselors, or all persons credentialed by the Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services
  • Employees of health home-care agencies or home- and community-based services who are expected to have regular and substantial contact with children
  • Peace officers, police officers, district attorneys or assistant district attorneys, investigators employed in the office of a district attorney, or other law enforcement officials

Training Requirements for Mandatory Reporters

Citation: Soc. Serv. Law § 413

Any person, institution, school, facility, agency, organization, partnership, or corporation that employs persons mandated to report suspected incidents of child abuse or maltreatment shall provide all current and new employees with written information explaining the reporting requirements. The employers shall be responsible for the costs associated with printing and distributing the written information.

Any State or local governmental agency or authorized agency that issues a license, certificate, or permit to an individual to operate a family day care home or group family day care home shall provide each person currently holding or seeking such a license, certificate, or permit with written information explaining the reporting requirements.

Any person, institution, school, facility, agency, organization, partnership, or corporation that employs persons who are mandated to report suspected incidents of child abuse or maltreatment and whose employees, in the normal course of their employment, travel to locations where children reside, shall provide, consistent all current and new employees with information on recognizing the signs of an unlawful methamphetamine laboratory. The Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services shall make available to such employers information on recognizing the signs of unlawful methamphetamine laboratories.

The Office of Children and Family Services shall update training issued to persons and officials required to report cases of suspected child abuse or maltreatment to include protocols to reduce implicit bias in the decision-making processes, strategies for identifying adverse childhood experiences, and guidelines to assist in recognizing signs of abuse or maltreatment while interacting virtually. 

See Mandated Reporter Training to access free online training.

Reporting by Other Persons
Citation: Soc. Serv. Law § 414

Any other person who has reasonable cause to suspect that a child is abused or maltreated may report. 

Institutional Responsibility to Report
Citation: Soc. Serv. Law § 413

Whenever a person is required to report in their capacity as a member of the staff of a medical or other public or private institution, school, facility, or agency, they shall make the report as required and immediately notify the person in charge of such institution, school, facility, or agency, or their designated agent. The person in charge, or the designated agent of such person, shall be responsible for all subsequent administration necessitated by the report. Any report shall include the name, title, and contact information for every staff person of the institution who is believed to have direct knowledge of the allegations in the report. Nothing in this section or title is intended to require more than one report from any such institution, school, or agency.

A medical or other public or private institution, school, facility, or agency shall not take any retaliatory personnel action against an employee because such employee believes that they have reasonable cause to suspect that a child is an abused or maltreated child and that employee therefore makes a report in accordance with this title. No school, school official, child care provider, foster care provider, residential care facility provider, hospital, medical institution provider, or mental health facility provider shall impose any conditions, including prior approval or prior notification, upon a member of their staff specifically required to report under this title. 

Standards for Making a Report
Citation: Soc. Serv. Law § 413

A report is required when the reporter has reasonable cause to suspect that either of the following is true:

  • A child coming before them in their professional or official capacity is an abused or maltreated child. 
  • The parent, guardian, custodian, or other person legally responsible for the child comes before the reporter and states from personal knowledge facts, conditions, or circumstances that, if correct, would render the child an abused or maltreated child. 

Privileged Communications
Citation: Soc. Serv. Law § 415

Notwithstanding the privileges set forth in article 45 of the civil practice law and rules, and any other provision of law to the contrary, mandated reporters who make a report that initiates an investigation of an allegation of child abuse or maltreatment are required to comply with all requests for records made by a child protective services agency relating to the report. 

Inclusion of the Reporter's Name in the Report
Citation: Soc. Serv. Law § 415

The report shall include the name and contact information for the reporter. 

Disclosure of the Reporter's Identity
Citation: Soc. Serv. Law § 422-a

Any disclosure of information shall not identify the source of the report.