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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

HF 316

as introduced - 90th Legislature (2017 - 2018) Posted on 01/17/2017 10:34am

KEY: stricken = removed, old language.
underscored = added, new language.

Current Version - as introduced

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A bill for an act
relating to children; requiring reports of maltreatment; establishing a crime of
chemical endangerment of unborn children; amending Minnesota Statutes 2016,
section 626.5561, subdivisions 1, 2, 5; proposing coding for new law in Minnesota
Statutes, chapter 152.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

Section 1.

new text begin [152.40] CHEMICAL ENDANGERMENT OF AN UNBORN CHILD.
new text end

new text begin Subdivision 1. new text end

new text begin Definition. new text end

new text begin For purposes of this section, "unborn child" has the definition
provided in section 609.266, paragraph (a).
new text end

new text begin Subd. 2. new text end

new text begin Misdemeanor. new text end

new text begin A person who knowingly causes or permits an unborn child to
be exposed to a controlled substance is guilty of a misdemeanor.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 3. new text end

new text begin Gross misdemeanor. new text end

new text begin A person who violates subdivision 2 and the exposure
to the controlled substance results in substantial bodily harm to an unborn child is guilty of
a gross misdemeanor.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 4. new text end

new text begin Felony. new text end

new text begin A person who violates subdivision 2 and the exposure to the controlled
substance results in the death of an unborn child is guilty of a felony.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 5. new text end

new text begin Affirmative defense. new text end

new text begin It is an affirmative defense if a mother of an unborn child
charged under this section proves that she had a lawful prescription for the controlled
substance, that she was complying with the prescribing physician's instructions, and the
prescribing physician knew that the accused was pregnant at the time the prescription was
issued.
new text end

Sec. 2.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 626.5561, subdivision 1, is amended to read:


Subdivision 1.

Reports required.

(a) deleted text beginExcept as provided in paragraph (b),deleted text end A person
mandated to report under section 626.556, subdivision 3, shall immediately report to the
local welfare agency if the person knows or has reason to believe that a woman is pregnant
and has used a controlled substance for a nonmedical purpose during the pregnancy,
including, but not limited to, tetrahydrocannabinol, or has consumed alcoholic beverages
during the pregnancy in any way that is habitual or excessive.

deleted text begin (b) A health care professional or a social service professional who is mandated to report
under section 626.556, subdivision 3, is exempt from reporting under paragraph (a) a
woman's use or consumption of tetrahydrocannabinol or alcoholic beverages during
pregnancy if the professional is providing the woman with prenatal care or other healthcare
services.
deleted text end

deleted text begin (c)deleted text end new text begin(b) new text endAny person may make a voluntary report if the person knows or has reason to
believe that a woman is pregnant and has used a controlled substance for a nonmedical
purpose during the pregnancy, including, but not limited to, tetrahydrocannabinol, or has
consumed alcoholic beverages during the pregnancy in any way that is habitual or excessive.

deleted text begin (d)deleted text endnew text begin (c)new text end An oral report shall be made immediately by telephone or otherwise. An oral
report made by a person required to report shall be followed within 72 hours, exclusive of
weekends and holidays, by a report in writing to the local welfare agency. Any report shall
be of sufficient content to identify the pregnant woman, the nature and extent of the use, if
known, and the name and address of the reporter. The local welfare agency shall accept a
report made under paragraph (c) notwithstanding refusal by a voluntary reporter to provide
the reporter's name or address as long as the report is otherwise sufficient.

deleted text begin (e)deleted text endnew text begin (d)new text end For purposes of this section, "prenatal care" means the comprehensive package
of medical and psychological support provided throughout the pregnancy.

Sec. 3.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 626.5561, subdivision 2, is amended to read:


Subd. 2.

Local welfare agency.

Upon receipt of a report deleted text beginrequireddeleted text end under subdivision 1,
the local welfare agency shall immediatelynew text begin notify law enforcement and new text end conduct an
deleted text begin appropriatedeleted text endnew text begin investigation ornew text end assessment and offer services indicated under the circumstances.
Services offered may include, but are not limited to, a referral for chemical dependency
assessment, a referral for chemical dependency treatment if recommended, and a referral
for prenatal care. The local welfare agency may also take any appropriate action under
chapter 253B, including seeking an emergency admission under section 253B.05. The local
welfare agency shall seek an emergency admission under section 253B.05 if the pregnant
woman refuses recommended voluntary services or fails recommended treatment.

Sec. 4.

Minnesota Statutes 2016, section 626.5561, subdivision 5, is amended to read:


Subd. 5.

Immunity.

(a) A person making a voluntary or mandated report under
subdivision 1 or assisting in an new text begininvestigation or new text endassessment under subdivision 2 is immune
from any civil or criminal liability that otherwise might result from the person's actions, if
the person is acting in good faith.

(b) This subdivision does not provide immunity to any person for failure to make a
required report or for committing neglect, physical abuse, or sexual abuse of a child.