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Attorney & Mediator
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Category: Family Law
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In New York State, is it legal to spank a child with a belt

Customer Question

In New York State, is it legal to spank a child with a belt or are you only allowed to spank a child with your hand? I already know I am not allowed to injure my child or leave marks.
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Attorney & Mediator replied 8 years ago.
You cannot use tools (such as belt) to discipline a child. That would be considered excessive corporeal punishment. You can use reasonable physical force to discipline.

Below is the NY penal code section for your review.

§ 35.10 Justification; use of physical force generally.
The use of physical force upon another person which would otherwise
constitute an offense is justifiable and not criminal under any of the
following circumstances:
1. A parent, guardian or other person entrusted with the care and
supervision of a person under the age of twenty-one or an incompetent
person, and a teacher or other person entrusted with the care and
supervision of a person under the age of twenty-one for a special
purpose, may use physical force, but not deadly physical force, upon
such person when and to the extent that he reasonably believes it
necessary to maintain discipline or to promote the welfare of such
person.

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Legal Disclaimer. The information given by me is not legal advice. You should not and may not rely on anything on this website as legal advice. I am not establishing an attorney-client relationship with you. I am providing only research, resources and information only for you to be informed and educated about your particular needs and my answer is limited to the facts presented. You are only paying me for such information given. I do not provide general or specific legal advice. . I also do not claim to be licensed to practice in the state where this information is being provided. I strive to provide quality information, but I make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained in or linked herein and it’s associated sites. As law is always changing, you are recommended to speak with the appropriate legal counsel for accurate and complete information. No part of this disclaimer can be copied or reproduced without the express consent of the owner[lawNinvest]. Thank you.

Attorney & Mediator and 4 other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Unfortunately, I believe the law is murky on this because it does not explicitly say you can or can not use "tools". The law also says nothing about "excessive corporal punishment" it uses the term "deadly". Many could argue, that a belt or ruler or a wooden spoon is not deadly.
Expert:  Attorney & Mediator replied 8 years ago.
Actually I forgot to include the following summary of the law which includes the language of "excessive". As to "tools" when it says "may use physical force" that means a physical action against another person and having worked in representing parents in Child welfare cases that means no "tools".

The "deadly force" just mean you cannot discipline excessively.

NEW YORK

Neglecting a child includes unreasonably inflicting or allowing the infliction of harm or substantial risk thereof, including excessive corporal punishment. Fam. Ct. Sec. 1012.[Ci.] Parent/guardian/other person with care and supervision of person under 21, can use non-deadly physical force when and to the extent he reasonably believes necessary to maintain discipline or promote welfare of person force performed upon. Penal Sec. 35:10.[Cr.]



If I have been helpful, please click Accept for my time and research. If you need more help, please click reply. Positive Feedback is greatly appreciated and reciprocated. Feedback should relate to customer service and not about the law, which I have no control over, thank you.

Legal Disclaimer. The information given by me is not legal advice. You should not and may not rely on anything on this website as legal advice. I am not establishing an attorney-client relationship with you. I am providing only research, resources and information only for you to be informed and educated about your particular needs and my answer is limited to the facts presented. You are only paying me for such information given. I do not provide general or specific legal advice. . I also do not claim to be licensed to practice in the state where this information is being provided. I strive to provide quality information, but I make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained in or linked herein and it’s associated sites. As law is always changing, you are recommended to speak with the appropriate legal counsel for accurate and complete information. No part of this disclaimer can be copied or reproduced without the express consent of the owner[lawNinvest]. Thank you.

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