South Carolina General Assembly
124th Session, 2021-2022

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Indicates Matter Stricken
Indicates New Matter

A224, R253, S243

STATUS INFORMATION

General Bill
Sponsors: Senator Young
Document Path: l:\s-res\try\013unfo.sp.try.docx

Introduced in the Senate on January 12, 2021
Introduced in the House on April 6, 2021
Last Amended on June 15, 2022
Passed by the General Assembly on June 15, 2022
Governor's Action: June 17, 2022, Signed

Summary: Confidential or unfounded child abuse and neglect reports

HISTORY OF LEGISLATIVE ACTIONS

     Date      Body   Action Description with journal page number
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
   12/9/2020  Senate  Prefiled
   12/9/2020  Senate  Referred to Committee on Family and Veterans' Services
   1/12/2021  Senate  Introduced and read first time (Senate Journal-page 232)
   1/12/2021  Senate  Referred to Committee on Family and Veterans' Services 
                        (Senate Journal-page 232)
   3/10/2021  Senate  Committee report: Favorable with amendment Family and 
                        Veterans' Services (Senate Journal-page 7)
   3/11/2021          Scrivener's error corrected
   3/23/2021  Senate  Committee Amendment Adopted (Senate Journal-page 18)
   3/23/2021  Senate  Amended (Senate Journal-page 18)
   3/25/2021  Senate  Read second time (Senate Journal-page 11)
   3/25/2021  Senate  Roll call Ayes-43  Nays-0 (Senate Journal-page 11)
   3/30/2021  Senate  Read third time and sent to House (Senate Journal-page 8)
    4/6/2021  House   Introduced and read first time (House Journal-page 126)
    4/6/2021  House   Referred to Committee on Judiciary 
                        (House Journal-page 126)
    5/3/2022  House   Committee report: Favorable with amendment Judiciary 
                        (House Journal-page 77)
    5/5/2022  House   Debate adjourned (House Journal-page 90)
   5/10/2022  House   Amended (House Journal-page 46)
   5/10/2022  House   Read second time (House Journal-page 46)
   5/10/2022  House   Roll call Yeas-102  Nays-0 (House Journal-page 71)
   5/11/2022  House   Read third time and returned to Senate with amendments 
                        (House Journal-page 7)
   5/12/2022  Senate  Non-concurrence in House amendment 
                        (Senate Journal-page 57)
   5/12/2022  House   House insists upon amendment and conference committee 
                        appointed Reps.  Bernstein, Collins, Davis 
                        (House Journal-page 122)
   5/12/2022  Senate  Conference committee appointed  Young, Shealy, McElveen 
                        (Senate Journal-page 58)
   6/15/2022  House   Conference report received and adopted 
                        (House Journal-page 72)
   6/15/2022  House   Roll call Yeas-108  Nays-0 (House Journal-page 75)
   6/15/2022  Senate  Conference report received and adopted 
                        (Senate Journal-page 85)
   6/15/2022  Senate  Roll call Ayes-42  Nays-0 (Senate Journal-page 85)
   6/15/2022  Senate  Ordered enrolled for ratification 
                        (Senate Journal-page 89)
   6/16/2022          Ratified R  253
   6/17/2022          Signed By Governor
   6/28/2022          Effective date  06/17/22
   6/28/2022          Act No.  224

View the latest legislative information at the website

VERSIONS OF THIS BILL

12/9/2020
3/10/2021
3/11/2021
3/23/2021
5/3/2022
5/10/2022
6/15/2022

(Text matches printed bills. Document has been reformatted to meet World Wide Web specifications.)

NOTE: THIS IS A TEMPORARY VERSION. THIS DOCUMENT WILL REMAIN IN THIS VERSION UNTIL FINAL APPROVAL BY THE LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL.

(R253, S243)

AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 63-7-940, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO AUTHORIZED USES OF UNFOUNDED CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT REPORTS, SO AS TO AUTHORIZE THE RELEASE OF INFORMATION ABOUT CHILD FATALITIES OR NEAR FATALITIES; TO AMEND SECTION 63-7-1990, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO THE CONFIDENTIALITY AND RELEASE OF CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT RECORDS, SO AS TO AUTHORIZE THE RELEASE OF INFORMATION ABOUT CHILD FATALITIES OR NEAR FATALITIES; AND TO AMEND SECTION 63-7-20, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO CHILDREN'S CODE DEFINITIONAL TERMS, SO AS TO ADD A DEFINITION FOR "NEAR FATALITY".

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:

Use of unfounded child abuse or neglect case information

SECTION    1.    Section 63-7-940(A) of the 1976 Code is amended by adding an appropriately numbered item at the end to read:

"(    )(a)    the state director or the director's designee, for the purpose of publicly disclosing findings or information about a prior unfounded case of child abuse or neglect in the preparation and release of reports pursuant to Section 63-7-1990(H), provided that the disclosed information is limited to the following:

(i)        the cause and circumstances regarding the child fatality or near fatality;

(ii)    the age and gender of the child;

(iii)    information describing any previous reports of child abuse or neglect that are pertinent to the abuse or neglect that led to the child fatality or near fatality;

(iv)    information describing any previous investigations pertinent to the abuse or neglect that led to the child fatality or near fatality;

(v)    the result of any such investigations; and

(vi)    the services provided by the State and actions of the State on behalf of the child that are pertinent to the child abuse or neglect that led to the child fatality or near fatality.

(b)    The department may delay public disclosure of findings or information pursuant to this item if the disclosure of the findings or information would threaten the safety or well-being of a child or the child's family, or if disclosure of the findings or information would impede a criminal investigation or endanger a reporter of abuse or neglect."

Release of information regarding child fatalities or near fatalities

SECTION    2.    Section 63-7-1990(H) of the 1976 Code is amended to read:

"(H)(1)    The state director or the director's designee is authorized to prepare and release reports of cases of child abuse or neglect which have resulted in a child fatality or near fatality provided that the disclosed information is limited to the following:

(a)    the cause and circumstances regarding the child fatality or near fatality;

(b)    the age and gender of the child;

(c)    information describing any previous reports of child abuse or neglect that are pertinent to the abuse or neglect that led to the child fatality or near fatality;

(d)    information describing any previous investigations pertinent to the abuse or neglect that led to the child fatality or near fatality;

(e)    the result of any such investigations; and

(f)    the services provided by the State and actions of the State on behalf of the child that are pertinent to the child abuse or neglect that led to the child fatality or near fatality.

(2)    The department may delay public disclosure of a report pursuant to this subsection if the disclosure of the report would threaten the safety or well-being of a child or the child's family, or if disclosure of the report would impede a criminal investigation or endanger a reporter of abuse or neglect."

Definitions

SECTION    3.    Section 63-7-20 of the 1976 Code, as last amended by Act 24 of 2021, is further amended by adding an appropriately numbered item to read:

"(    )    'Near fatality' means an act of abuse or neglect that, as certified by a physician, places a child in serious or critical condition."

Time effective

SECTION    4.    This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.

Ratified the 16th day of June, 2022.

Approved the 17th day of June, 2022. -- S.

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This web page was last updated on June 28, 2022 at 11:22 AM