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Sammis Law Firm

Child Neglect Crimes

Crimes of child neglect are prosecuted under Florida law. The crime can be based on either repeated conduct or even a single incident or omission that results in, or could reasonably be expected to result in, serious physical or mental injury, or a substantial risk of death, to a child.

The crime of neglecting a child involves proof of a caregiver’s failure or omission to provide a child with the care, supervision, and services necessary to maintain the child’s physical and mental health.

Those failures or omissions can include things that a prudent person would consider essential for the well-being of the child including:

  • food
  • nutrition
  • clothing
  • shelter
  • supervision
  • medicine
  • medical services

Alternatively, child neglect allegations might involve a caregiver’s failure to make a reasonable effort to protect a child from abuse, neglect, or exploitation by another person.

Attorney for Child Neglect Crimes in Tampa, FL

If you have been accused of child abuse or aggravated child abuse, contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at the Sammis Law Firm.

Contact us to find out what you need to do right now to protect yourself and your family against this serious allegation.

Our main offices is in downtown Tampa and we have a second office in New Port Richey, FL. We represent clients charged with child abuse or neglect throughout the greater Tampa Bay area including the following counties: Hillsborough County, Hernando County, Pasco County, Pinellas County, Manatee County, Sarasota County, and Polk County, FL.

Call 813-250-0500.

Penalties for Child Neglect in Florida

Under Florida law, a person who willfully or by culpable negligence neglects a child and in so doing causes great bodily harm, permanent disability, or permanent disfigurement to the child commits a felony of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

A person who willfully or by culpable negligence neglects a child without causing great bodily harm, permanent disability, or permanent disfigurement to the child commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

Definitions Unique to Florida’s Child Neglect Statute

Under Florida’s child neglect statute, the term “maliciously” is defined to mean wrongfully, intentionally, and without legal justification or excuse.

Maliciousness may be established by circumstances from which one could conclude that a reasonable parent would not have engaged in the damaging acts toward the child for any valid reason and that the primary purpose of the acts was to cause the victim unjustifiable pain or injury.

This article was last updated on Friday, April 3, 2020.

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