Child custody can be a complicated and emotional issue for a Colorado family. Deciding what will happen to a child after parents divorce or when there are concerns for the child’s safety are difficult cases to navigate. If there are concerns about the welfare of a child while in the custody of or under the supervision of a specific individual, that could have a direct impact on the terms of a custody or visitation order.
Child neglect is a serious issue that could affect the physical safety and mental well-being of a minor. If there are signs of a problem, concerned family members or other parties may bring the issues to the attention of the authorities. If there is evidence of neglect, the adult in charge of the child at that time could lose their access to the child and ability to remain in his or her life in any capacity.
Types of child neglect a family may see
There are different types of child neglect, and they may all have potential long- and short-term effects on a child’s health and mental state. Common forms of neglect include:
- Educational neglect: A parent denies his or her child the right to an education by simply refusing to take him or her, or allowing or encouraging the child not to attend school.
- Medical neglect: Medical neglect happens when a parent does not address health concerns, take the child for regular screenings or delays needed treatment.
- Physical neglect: This happens when a parent does not provide for a child’s basic needs in the form of safety, shelter, food and more.
- Psychological or emotional neglect: This type of neglect happens when there is a general lack of affection or care that takes a toll on a child’s mental health.
A witness to child abuse, including neglect, must report it to the appropriate authorities as soon as possible. Parents or guardians who neglect a child under their care or intentionally harm a child could lose their visitation and custody rights. If there are concerns for the child’s safety, you have the right to address those matters with a family law court when seeking a custody and visitation order that will be in the best interests of the child.