Texas Child Abuse Laws
Child abuse laws criminalize physical, emotional, or sexual abuse of minors and also require certain third parties with knowledge of the abuse to report it to the authorities. In Texas, professionals with access to children (such as teachers and pediatricians) are required to report suspected cases of child abuse. The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) investigates reports of child abuse (and neglect) in the state.
|Code Section||Family 261.001 et seq.|
|What Constitutes Abuse||Inflicting or failing to reasonably prevent others from inflicting mental or emotional injury impairing child's growth, development, or psychological functioning; physical injury resulting in substantial harm, or which is at variance with explanation given; sexual abuse, exploitation, use of controlled substance resulting in mental or physical harm to child|
|Mandatory Reporting Required By||"Professionals" including teachers, nurses, doctors, day care employees, employees of state-licensed or certified organizations with direct contact with children, clergy, mental health professional, attorney, reproductive health clinic worker, any person|
|Basis of Report of Abuse/neglect||Having cause to believe that a child's physical or mental health or welfare has been or may be adversely affected by abuse or neglect|
|To Whom Reported||Texas Department of Protective and Regulatory Services|
|Penalty for Failure to Report or False Reporting||Class B misdemeanor Physical injury resulting in substantial harm; mental or emotional injury; failure to prevent injury; harmful sexual conduct or pornography; failure to prevent use of controlled substance by child False report: Class A misdemeanor|
Research the Law
- Texas Law
- Official State Codes - Links to the official online statutes (laws) in all 50 states and DC.
Texas Child Abuse Laws: Related Resources