Under Nevada law, individuals are generally required to make reports of suspected acts of violence committed against children 12 and under. Individuals are also required by law to report suspected sexual abuse or sexual offenses when the victim is a child aged 12 and younger.
The law makes it a misdemeanor offense not to make a report in a reasonable time after knowing of an offense, or having reason to know of an offense, committed against a child. While there are certain exceptions, such as for close family members of the alleged victim or perpetrator, this means that anyone who becomes aware of violent acts or sexual assault against a child must take action.
However, making an accusation of abusive or illegal behavior could generally open someone up to a lawsuit for false accusations or defamation. Because the state of Nevada wants to ensure that people comply with the rules mandating reporting of offenses and are not penalized for doing so, state law provides protection from civil or criminal liability for most reports of suspected violence or sexual offenses against a child.
The rules for when you must report sexual abuse or violence against children, as well as the protections from liability for making such a report, are found within Chapter 202 of Nevada’s code, which is the chapter of Title 15 that deals with crimes against public health and safety.
If you are accused of violating the rules requiring reporting abuse of a child, or if you are otherwise accused of wrongdoing under Chapter 202, a Vegas defense attorney can help you to fight charges you are facing. We can also help if you made a report and are now facing accusations that you acted wrongfully in sharing information about suspected abuse.
LV Criminal Defense has extensive experience providing representation to defendants and helping defendants to navigate the criminal justice system to try to avoid consequences or minimize penalties in all different types of situations. To find out how our firm can help you to defend yourself when you’ve been accused of violating the law, give us a call today.
Nick Wooldridge has a long track record of representing clients accused of serious federal and state crimes in Nevada.
The statute that provides immunity from civil or criminal liability when you report suspected crimes against children is Nevada Revised Statute section 202.891. According to this statute, if you are required to make a report under N.R.S. 202.882, you are protected from civil liability and from criminal liability both in connection with the report and in connection with any acts or omissions related to that report.
N.R.S. 202.882 mandates reporting acts of violence or sexual assault against a child 12 and under if you know, or have reason to know, that such acts have been committed. The report must be made as soon as practicable but always within 24-hours of becoming aware of an alleged offense.
You are immune from making a report under N.R.S. 202.882, and from acts or omissions related to that report, as long as you acted in good faith. N.R.S. 202.891 specifies that there is a presumption of good faith when reports are made.
However, you are not immune from civil or criminal liability for any other act or omission committed as a principal, accessory, or conspirator to the violent act or sexual offense against the child.
If you have been accused of failing to report violence or sexual assault against a child when you were required to make such a report, you could be found guilty of a misdemeanor offense. You should reach out to a Vegas criminal lawyer to help you fight charges. LV Criminal Defense can represent you both if you’re accused of not reporting and if you are accused of making a report unlawfully. Give us a call today to find out more about how we can help you.