Mandatory Reporting of Child Abuse and Neglect - Ohio

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Professionals Required to Report
Citation: Rev. Code § 2151.421

Mandatory reporters include the following:

  • Attorneys
  • Health-care professionals, including physicians, interns, residents, dentists, podiatrists, or nurses
  • Licensed psychologists, school psychologists, or marriage and family therapists
  • Speech pathologists or audiologists
  • Coroners  
  • Administrators or employees of child daycare centers, certified child care agencies, or other public or private children services; residential camps; child day camps; or private, nonprofit therapeutic wilderness camps agencies
  • Teachers, school employees, or school authorities
  • Social workers, professional counselors, or employees of home health agencies
  • Peace officers, agents of county humane societies, dog wardens, deputy dog wardens, or animal control officers
  • Persons, other than clerics, rendering spiritual treatment through prayer in accordance with the tenets of a well-recognized religion
  • Professional employees of a county Department of Job and Family Services who works with children and families
  • Superintendents or regional administrators employed by the Department of Youth Services
  • Superintendents, board members, or employees of county boards of developmental disabilities; investigative agents contracted with by a county board of developmental disabilities; employees of the Department of Developmental Disabilities; employees of a facility or home that provides respite care; employees of a home health agency; or employees of an entity that provides homemaker services
  • Employees of qualified organizations or host families as defined in § 2151.90; foster caregivers
  • Persons performing the duties of an assessor or third party employed by a public children's services agency to assist in providing child- or family-related services
  • Court-appointed special advocates or guardians ad litem

Training Requirements for Mandatory Reporters

Training for mandatory reporters is not addressed in the laws and policies reviewed. 

The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services provides an overview of the reporting process on its webpage Report Child Abuse and Neglect.

Reporting by Other Persons
Citation: Rev. Code § 2151.421

Any other person who suspects that a child has suffered or faces a threat of suffering from abuse or neglect may report. 

Institutional Responsibility to Report
Citation: Rev. Code § 2151.421

If two or more health-care professionals, after providing health-care services to a child, determine or suspect that the child has been or is being abused or neglected, the health-care professionals may designate one of the health-care professionals to report the abuse or neglect. A single report shall meet the reporting requirements of this section.

Standards for Making a Report
Citation: Rev. Code § 2151.421

A report is required when a mandated person is acting in an official or professional capacity and knows or suspects that a child under age 18 or a person under age 21 with a developmental disability or physical impairment has suffered or faces a threat of suffering any physical or mental wound, injury, disability, or condition of a nature that reasonably indicates abuse or neglect of the child. 

Privileged Communications
Citation: Rev. Code § 2151.421

An attorney, physician, or cleric is not required to make a report concerning any communication the attorney, physician, or cleric receives from a client, patient, or penitent in a professional relationship, if, in accordance with § 2317.02, the attorney, physician, or cleric could not testify with respect to that communication in a civil or criminal proceeding.

If all the following apply, the client, patient, or penitent in the relationship is deemed to have waived any testimonial privilege with respect to any communication the attorney, physician, or cleric receives, and the attorney, physician, or cleric shall make a report with respect to that communication:

  • The client, patient, or penitent, at the time of the communication, is either a child under age 18 or a mentally retarded, developmentally disabled, or physically impaired person under age 21.
  • The attorney, physician, or cleric knows, or has reasonable cause to suspect based on facts that would cause a reasonable person in similar position to suspect, as a result of the communication or any observations made during that communication, that the client, patient, or penitent has suffered or faces a threat of suffering any physical or mental wound, injury, disability, or condition of a nature that reasonably indicates abuse or neglect of the person.
  • The abuse or neglect does not arise out of the person's attempt to have an abortion without the notification of her parents, guardian, or custodian in accordance with § 2151.85.

Inclusion of the Reporter's Name in the Report
Citation: Rev. Code § 2151.421

The reporter is not required to provide their name in the report, but if they want to receive information on the outcome of the investigation, they must provide their name, address, and telephone number to the person who receives the report. 

Disclosure of the Reporter's Identity
Citation: Rev. Code § 2151.421

The information provided in a report made pursuant to this section and the name of the person who made the report shall not be released for use and shall not be used as evidence in any civil action or proceeding brought against the person who made the report.