Child abuse is a serious crime in all 50 states, including Washington. The crime includes physical, emotional, and sexual abuse of minors, in addition to exploitation and neglect.
What Are The Child Abuse Laws In Washington?
Washington child abuse laws are enforced by the State Dept. of Social and Health Services. As in most other states, mandatory reporting requirements apply to peace officers and other adults with regular access to children, such as teachers and pediatricians.
Those people legally required to report child abuse or neglect are:
How Do I Report Suspected Child Abuse?
Call the state's child abuse hotline at 1-866-END-HARM (1-866-363-4276) to report a suspected incident of child abuse or neglect.
What Question Will I Be Asked When I Call To Report Suspected Abuse?
The following chart lists the main provisions of Washington's child abuse laws. See Child Abuse Overview to learn more about this crime.
|Code Section||26.44.010. et seq.|
|What Constitutes Abuse||The injury, sexual abuse/exploitation or negligent treatment of a child, under circumstances which indicate that such child's health, welfare, or safety is harmed|
|Mandatory Reporting Required By||All practitioners, coroners, law enforcement officer, school personnel, nurse, social services counselor, psychologist, pharmacist, child care providers, juvenile probation officer, health and social services department employee|
|Basis of Report of Abuse/neglect||Reasonable cause to believe that a child has suffered abuse or neglect|
|To Whom Reported||State Department of Social and Health Services or proper law enforcement agency|
|Penalty for Failure to Report or False Reporting||Gross Misdemeanor|
Research the Law
Washington Child Abuse Laws: Related Resources
Contact a qualified attorney.