2020 Arkansas Code
Title 12 - Law Enforcement, Emergency Management, and Military Affairs
Subtitle 2 - Law Enforcement Agencies and Programs
Chapter 18 - Child Maltreatment Act
Subchapter 3 - Child Abuse Hotline
§ 12-18-303. Minimum requirements for a report to be accepted

Universal Citation: AR Code § 12-18-303 (2020)
  1. (a) Except as otherwise provided in this section, the Child Abuse Hotline shall accept a report if:

    1. (1) The report is of:

      1. (A) An allegation of child maltreatment or suspected child maltreatment, that if found to be true, would constitute child maltreatment as defined under this chapter;

      2. (B) The death of a child who died suddenly and unexpectedly; or

      3. (C) The death of a child reported by a coroner or county sheriff under § 20-15-502;

    2. (2) Sufficient identifying information is provided to identify and locate the child or the child's family; and

    3. (3) The child or the child's family is present in Arkansas or the incident occurred in Arkansas.

  2. (b)

    1. (1) If the alleged offender resides in another state and the incident occurred in another state or country, the Child Abuse Hotline shall document receipt of the report, transfer the report to the Child Abuse Hotline of the state or country where the alleged offender resides or the incident occurred, and, if child protection is an issue, forward the report to the Department of Human Services or the equivalent governmental agency of the state or country where the alleged offender resides.

    2. (2) Any record of receipt of a report under subdivision (b)(1) of this section may be used only within the Department of Human Services for purposes of administration of the program and shall not be disclosed except to:

      1. (A) The prosecuting attorney; or

      2. (B) A law enforcement agency.

    3. (3) Data identifying a reporter under subdivision (b)(1) of this section shall be maintained under § 12-18-502.

  3. (c) If the incident occurred in Arkansas and the victim, offender, or victim's parents no longer reside in Arkansas, the Child Abuse Hotline shall accept the report and the Arkansas investigating agency shall contact the other state and request assistance in completing the investigation, including an interview with the out-of-state subject of the report.

  4. (d)

    1. (1) If the Child Abuse Hotline receives a report and the alleged offender is a resident of the State of Arkansas and the report of child maltreatment or suspected child maltreatment in the state or country in which the act occurred would also be child maltreatment in Arkansas at the time the incident occurred, the Child Abuse Hotline shall refer the report to the appropriate investigating agency within the state so that the Arkansas investigative agency can investigate alone or in concert with the investigative agency of any other state or country that may be involved.

    2. (2) The Arkansas investigating agency shall make an investigative determination and shall provide notice to the alleged offender that, if the allegation is determined to be true, the offender's name will be placed in the Child Maltreatment Central Registry.

    3. (3) The other state may also conduct an investigation in this state that results in the offender's being named in a true report in that state and placed in the Child Maltreatment Central Registry of that state.

  5. (e)

    1. (1)

      1. (A) A report of child maltreatment that does not meet the requirements of subsection (a) of this section shall not be accepted by the Child Abuse Hotline.

      2. (B) The Child Abuse Hotline may accept a report of child maltreatment that does not meet the requirements of subsection (a) of this section if sufficient information is provided to accept the report under §§ 12-18-304 — 12-18-310.

    2. (2)

      1. (A) The Department of Human Services and the Division of Arkansas State Police shall establish procedures for the Child Abuse Hotline.

      2. (B) The procedures established by the Department of Human Services and the Division of Arkansas State Police shall include without limitation the:

        1. (i) Creation of a secondary review of an accepted report of child maltreatment by the investigating agency assigned under § 12-18-601 to ensure that the report of child maltreatment meets the requirements of this section; and

        2. (ii) Ability of the Child Abuse Hotline and the investigating agency to contact the Department of Human Services to obtain or determine information relevant to whether a report of child maltreatment should be accepted.

    3. (3) A report of child maltreatment that does not meet the requirements of subsection (a) of this section shall be considered screened-out for the purposes of releasing information under § 12-18-910.

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