Child Neglect – When is it a crime?

Child Neglect – When is it a crime?

Neglect and Abuse

A child can suffer abuse from abusive parents or adults in many ways. Neglect is a commonly misunderstood form of abuse. You can neglect and abuse your child simultaneously by providing very little or no care. In these situations, the young person is often left without supervision. The parents may not be able to provide water, shelter, food, or medical care if necessary. After some time, this can lead to injury and physical signs. Parents who neglect the needs of their children could cause psychological or emotional trauma that can take years or even decades to heal.

Neglect Injuries

Social workers and other authorities will most likely see injuries from the physical injury sustained. The child may appear starved if he or she doesn’t get proper nutrition. The youth could develop a weathered appearance or sustain injuries trying to gain access to a building. A lack of touch, distrust, or other behavioral issues could all indicate emotional or psychological harm. Another sign of neglect could be a lack of education or basic concepts. If the parents do not ensure that the child attends school, it is considered neglect.

Statistics on Neglect

Neglect is the most common type of child abuse in America. Over 78 percent of all child abuse cases are caused by neglect. This compares to the 18% of children who are subject to physical abuse, and the 9 percent who have suffered from sexual abuse. Over 2000 children have died in the United States from neglect and abuse at home since 2012. Nearly 70% of these children died from neglect. Even if the child survives it is not uncommon for them to be emotionally or psychologically disabled or in pain.

Neglect in Different Forms

A child could be suffering from neglect at home in one of four ways. There are four types of neglect that a child may experience at home: medical, emotional, psychological, and educational. Most commonly, the physical form is when the person who is responsible for providing standard care neglects basic needs such as shelter, food, and clean living. This neglect can affect children who are in foster care, at home, or when their parents abandon them. Often, supervision is not provided and any needs may be overlooked. If the parent is still living, this could lead to criminal charges.

The Criminal Aspects of Neglect

The local police will typically charge the parent or adult who is caring for a child with criminal neglect if there are still visible injuries or trauma. It is evident by the child’s appearance in rags, with broken bones, unkempt appearance, or a messy appearance. Parents who choose to take their child to work over school could be violating state educational decrees. This is often against the law as children under a certain age are required to attend school.

If the child is a victim of trauma or provides a statement to teachers or authorities about it, then psychological and emotional neglect can still be considered criminal. Law enforcement can charge a parent or caregiver for neglect if the child suffers humiliation, insults, or emotional harm. Neglecting the basic mental and emotional needs of the youth can result in suffering in the present state and damage to the young person later in life.

Criminal Defense for Criminal Child Neglect

Sometimes a teacher might contact family law surrey bc enforcement. Other times, the child may lie to others. In these cases, the parent or adult could face child neglect charges. To refute the charges, and to provide evidence that the child was taken care of, it is crucial to retain a criminal defense attorney.


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