A lot of cases of domestic violence in Las Vegas are immediately attended to and eventually legally resolved because of mandatory reporting. It is as an essential tool to curb domestic violence by tracking victims and put an end to the abuse. The Nevada Revised Statutes holds laws about mandatory reporting of domestic violence and why particle set of people should report domestic abuse instantaneously.
Having said that, mandatory reporting of domestic violence is under some strict regulations as violating it could cost the welfare and ultimately the lives of the victims. Here is an article about mandatory reporting of domestic violence for you to know what to do in case you encounter it in the future.
What does mandatory reporting mean?
Mandatory reporting is basically informing the law enforcement of the matter of abuse of a child, an elder, an adult abuse, and an injury from a weapon which are all usually in a domestic setting. However, there are only designated reporters that are mandated to do so. According to the Nevada Revised Statutes (NRS), persons who have are providing services or are licensed under the State are required to do a mandatory reporting of domestic violence. Some of them are the following:
- Emergency Medical Services
- Physical therapists
- Marriage or family therapists
- Professional counselors such as drug abuse counselors
Case in point, if you are professional in a medical field and you have spotted signs of physical abuse, whether it was inflicted domestically or not, you need to report it.
How do you report domestic abuse?
There are many ways to report domestic abuse as a medical examiner or a coroner. One is through a phone call to the police which must be done immediately. Other mediums such as e-mail and social media are also applicable to report domestic abuse. However, when doing this, an appointed reporter must make sure that the victim would be safe as the police could show up at the residence of the abuse and make things worse. After an initial relay of information about the said domestic violence, a written report must follow. If the mandated reporter is not a medical examiner or coroner, he or she must first find one and give the report to them which in return would contact the local law enforcement if they find evidence of domestic violence.
According to NRS 200.5094, a report must contain:
- The name and address of the supposed victim
- The name and address of the guardian of the supposed victim, if there is one
- The name of the alleged perpetrator of domestic violence
- The type and extent of domestic abuse committed
- The evidence of past injuries, if possible, and other further proof
What are the penalties of mandatory reporting failure?
It might seem harsh but failing to report a domestic abuse situation is punishable under Nevada law as you might be risking potential injury or death of the victims. Knowingly and willfully ignoring to perform mandatory reporting of domestic violence, especially when the worse happens carries a misdemeanor charge. This punishment usually includes up to six months behind bars and a fine of not more than $1,000.
How can a domestic violence attorney help me?
If you are someone arrested for domestic violence because of false mandatory reporting, a criminal defense attorney in Las Vegas and Nevada should be an aid that you need to seek immediately. During the hearing of the charges, with the help of your attorney, you can use defenses to challenge the mandatory reporting of domestic violence such as the report was falsely made or it was due to duress or out of spite. You could also point out the accuracy of the report, the credibility of the report, as well as the errors made in the actual account.
Of course, your domestic violence attorney will have to evaluate if certain defenses are permissible. As written in NRS 207.280, false reporting of a crime to the local enforcement is a misdemeanor in Nevada.
Domestic violence is one of the worst crimes in Las Vegas and it can follow you anywhere, even at work. Without professionals to alert the authority about them, many will be in danger. If you happen to encounter instances of domestic violence, it is your responsibility to report them even if you are not under the designated professions. Failing to do so cannot only place guilt over you but might also force you to face criminal charges.