As parents, we may feel as if we have the right to do as we please with
our children, but the law says otherwise. By law, parents have a duty
to provide their children with the necessities of life, such as food,
shelter, clothing, and medical care, and this is regardless of their financial
Often, a parent will have financial problems and they will have difficulty
buying food or new cloths for their children. Some parents are evicted
from their apartments and homes and forced to find a place to live. Regardless
of a family’s financial circumstances, or whatever emotional turmoil
the parents are going through, they still
must provide for their children.
How can a parent provide for their children when they can’t provide
for themselves due to economic circumstances out of their control? The
first line of defense is to
ask the government for help.
Families with children in Orange County have many resources available,
such as food stamps, food banks, Medicaid, and other non-profit charities,
some of which provide clothing for families in need.
While these resources are available, sometimes parents don’t take
advantage of them properly. A parent may be “too proud” to
apply for benefits. Or, they may receive benefits but fail to take their
child to the doctor when their cold advances to bronchitis and then pneumonia.
Others sell their food stamps so they can buy alcohol, cigarettes and
About Child Neglect Charges
Child neglect is criminalized under Section 270-273.75 of the California
Penal Code. Under this section, if a parent willfully fails to provide
their child with necessary food, clothing and medical assistance, he or
she is guilt of child neglect, a misdemeanor punishable by:
- Up to one year in county jail or a state prison, or
- By a fine not to exceed $2,000, or
- By a fine and imprisonment.
Often, a child neglect investigation is started after a concerned family
member, a mandated reporter (teacher, doctor, and EMT etc.), or a neighbor
places a call to the police or social services. From there, a social worker
will begin investigating the family.
Parents, please be aware that if a social worker finds evidence of neglect,
they can have your child removed from your home and either placed with
a relative or a foster family until your case is resolved. This may be
temporary, or it can be a more permanent solution.
If you are facing child neglect or
abuse charges in Orange County, you need help NOW.
Contact the Law Offices of Virginia L. Landry, Inc. for a free case evaluation.