For the purposes of this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings respectively ascribed to them by this section:

Terms Used In Alabama Code 26-14-1

  • Corporation: A legal entity owned by the holders of shares of stock that have been issued, and that can own, receive, and transfer property, and carry on business in its own name.
  • following: means next after. See Alabama Code 1-1-1
  • person: includes a corporation as well as a natural person. See Alabama Code 1-1-1

(1) ABUSE. Harm or threatened harm to a child’s health or welfare. Harm or threatened harm to a child’s health or welfare can occur through nonaccidental physical or mental injury, sexual abuse or attempted sexual abuse, or sexual exploitation or attempted sexual exploitation. Sexual abuse includes the employment, use, persuasion, inducement, enticement, or coercion of any child to engage in, or having a child assist any other person to engage in, any sexually explicit conduct or any simulation of the conduct for the purpose of producing any visual depiction of the conduct; or the rape, molestation, prostitution, or other form of sexual exploitation of children, or incest with children as those acts are defined by Alabama law. Sexual exploitation includes allowing, permitting, or encouraging a child to engage in prostitution and allowing, permitting, encouraging, or engaging in the obscene or pornographic photographing, filming, or depicting of a child for commercial purposes.

(2) NEGLECT. Negligent treatment or maltreatment of a child, including the failure to provide adequate food, medical treatment, supervision, clothing, or shelter.

(3) CHILD. Either of the following:

a. A person under the age of 18 years.

b. A person under the age of 19 years who is in need of protective services and does not qualify for adult protective services under Chapter 9 of Title 38.

(4) DULY CONSTITUTED AUTHORITY. The chief of police of a municipality or municipality and county; or the sheriff, if the observation of child abuse or neglect is made in an unincorporated territory; or the Department of Human Resources; or any person, organization, corporation, group, or agency authorized and designated by the Department of Human Resources to receive reports of child abuse and neglect; provided, that a duly constituted authority shall not include an agency involved in the acts or omissions of the reported child abuse or neglect.

(Acts 1975, No. 1124, p. 2213, §1; Acts 1981, No. 81-615, p. 1031; Acts 1981, No. 81-789, p. 1387; Acts 1993, 1st Ex. Sess., No. 93-890, p. 162, §2; Act 2019-447, §1.)