Karly’s Law

Karly’s Law is named after a 3-year-old Corvallis girl who died from abuse after allegations went unchecked. The law mandates that children in Oregon who exhibit suspicious physical injuries in the course of a child abuse investigation must receive medical attention within 48 hours. Since 2008, Karly’s Law has helped thousands of Oregon children receive medical care and support related to suspected abuse.

Karly’s Law imposes specific requirements on law enforcement, Department of Human Services (DHS) employees and designated medical providers who have received specialized training to assess injuries that may have been caused by child abuse.


To promote a basic understanding of the law and its requirements, the Oregon Network of Child Abuse Intervention Centers and the Oregon Department of Justice created a training video, “What You Need to Know about Karly’s Law ».” The video is intended for Multidisciplinary Team (MDT) members in Oregon and anyone at any MDT member agency who is involved in child abuse investigations.

Watch Video »

This video was made possible by funding from the Children’s Justice Act Task Force Subcommittee of the Child Welfare Advisory Council.

Suspicious Physical Injuries

Suspicious physical injuries include, but are not limited to:

  • burns or scalds.
  • extensive bruising or abrasions on any part of the body.
  • bruising, swelling or abrasions on the head, neck or face.
  • fractures of any bone in a child under the age of three.
  • multiple fractures in a child of any age.
  • dislocations, soft tissue swelling or moderate to severe cuts.
  • loss of the ability to walk or move normally according to the child’s developmental ability.
  • unconsciousness or difficulty maintaining consciousness.
  • multiple injuries of different types.
  • injuries causing serious or protracted disfigurement or loss of impairment of the function of any bodily organ.
  • any other injury that threatens the physical well-being of the child.

Suspicious injuries must be addressed as Karly’s Law requires.


For more information about Karly’s Law protocol, procedures: