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Relating to the duty to report child abuse and neglect.
No significant fiscal implication to the State is anticipated.
HB 3379 would allow a person to use due diligence and make a decision in good faith as to whether or not they file a report of child abuse. Such a person would not be guilty of committing a criminal offense for failing to file a report if they determine there is a lack of reasonable cause to file such a report. HB 3379 would not affect the requirements to make a report but provides a defense for not filing a report.
HB 3379 would help curb overly broad reporting requirements and prevent people from feeling the need to file a report simply to limit their own risk of liability. This would reduce the number of false or frivolous reports that may lead to the unnecessary and unwarranted removal of children from their homes. This benefits the principles of individual liberty, personal responsibility, and limited government. Texas Action supports HB 3379.