If you have been charged with child neglect, then you may have a defense. Simple neglect is a defense that is oftentimes successful when fighting a child neglect case. Even if you don’t think you have a defense, you should always speak to an attorney to make sure you have a full understanding of how the law applies specifically to your case. If you want to know more about simple neglect, or if you want to speak to a lawyer about how to beat your child neglect case in Florida, contact Matthew Williams now for a free consultation.
Child neglect in Florida is defined under Florida Statute 827.03(2)(d). A person commits the crime of child neglect when they are a caregiver for the child and they neglect the child in a willful or culpably negligent manner.
Child neglect occurs when a caregiver fails to provide a child with the essential care, supervision and services necessary to maintain the child’s physical and mental health, or fails to take reasonable steps to protect the child from abuse, neglect or exploitation by another person.
Child neglect may be based on repeated conduct or on a single incident or omission that results in, or could reasonably result in, serious physical or mental injury, or a substantial risk of death, to a child. Likewise, child neglect can be based on a caregiver’s failure to provide a reasonable effort to protect a child from abuse, neglect or exploitation by another person.
Child abuse is a third-degree felony, meaning you can be sentenced to up to 5 years in prison, or up to 5 years on probation and up to $5,000 in fines (you can also be sentenced to a jail or prison sentence followed by probation but the total length of the sentence cannot exceed 5 years).
If the child suffers great bodily harm, permanent disfigurement or permanent disability then child abuse is enhanced to a second-degree felony, meaning you can be sentenced to up to 15 years in prison, or up to 15 years on probation and up to $10,000 in fines (you can also be sentenced to a jail or prison sentence followed by probation but the total length of the sentence cannot exceed 15 years).
Criminal convictions, especially for crimes with child victims, carry severe consequences and can never be removed from your criminal record. If you are convicted of a felony you will lose your right to vote, your right to own firearms, and your ability to maintain certain business licenses. You can also lose your ability to receive financial aid, your ability to live in certain places and your ability to obtain a passport.
If you need an attorney who will advise you, fight for your rights, and do everything possible to protect your future, or if someone you know has been charged with child neglect in Florida then contact Matthew Williams now for a free consultation.