General Laws of Massachusetts - Chapter 19C Disabled Persons Protection Commission - Section 10 Reporters of abuse; liability; privileged communications

Section 10. Except when prevented by the constraints of professional privilege as hereinafter provided, mandated reporters shall notify the commission orally of any reportable condition immediately upon becoming aware of such condition and shall report in writing within forty-eight hours after such oral report.

Mandated reporters who have reasonable cause to believe that a disabled person has died as a result of a reportable condition shall immediately report such death, in writing, to the commission, to the district attorney for the county in which such death occurred and to the medical examiner as required by section six of chapter thirty-eight.

Any person may file report if such person has reasonable cause to believe that a disabled person is suffering from abuse or has died as a result thereof.

No mandated reporter shall be liable in any civil or criminal action by reason of submitting a report. No other person making a report shall be liable in any civil or criminal action by reason of submitting a report if such report was made in good faith; provided, however, that no person who abuses a disabled person shall be exempt from civil or criminal liability by reason of their reporting such abuse.

No privilege established, by sections one hundred and thirty-five A and one hundred and thirty-five B of chapter one hundred and twelve, by section twenty or twenty B of chapter two hundred and thirty-three, by court decision or by professional code relating to the exclusion of confidential communications and the competency of witnesses may be invoked to prevent a report by a mandated reporter or in any civil action arising out of a report made pursuant to this chapter; provided, however, that a mandated reporter need not report an otherwise reportable condition if the disabled person invokes a privilege, established by law or professional code, to maintain the confidentiality of communications with such mandated reporter.

Any person required by this section to make oral and written reports, who fails to do so, shall be punished by a fine of not more than one thousand dollars.

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Last modified: September 11, 2015