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Long-Term Effects Of Abuse And Neglect In The California Foster Care System


Children are placed in the foster care system to protect their safety and well-being when parents are unable or unwilling to do so, but studies have shown that the arrangement is not always safe. Psychology Today reveals that up to 28 percent of children are estimated to have suffered abuse or neglect in foster environments, though the actual number is likely higher. It is horrific to think that these young people experience mistreatment in their new home, especially after initially being taken from their families for many of the same reasons.

California personal injury laws allow victims of foster abuse and neglect to pursue those who caused them harm, so it is possible to recover monetary damages if you were mistreated. Because the concepts and legal process are complicated, you should count on an Oakland abuse and neglect attorney for assistance. When you realize the long-term effects of this misconduct, you can see why it is so important to enforce your rights.

Long-Term Consequences of Foster Abuse

Children who live in unsafe, unstable foster homes generally do poorly in school and are more likely to engage in risky, harmful behaviors. They often turn to drugs or alcohol, and some become sexually active or promiscuous at a young age. These children tend to show distrust for trust authority figures, which is justifiable given that foster parents, child services agencies, and the entire system has failed them.

Many of these mental and emotional issues follow abused foster children into adulthood. Some victims suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder and detachment syndrome that prevents them from developing close personal relationships.

Basis of Foster Abuse and Neglect Claims

Physical violence against a child is a criminal offense, while neglect is a violation of the laws that apply to foster parent obligations. However, a conviction or administrative penalties may lead to punishment by the government. To recover compensation for a foster abuse and neglect claim, you must go through the civil process. The basis of the case is an intentional tort with abuse, and for negligence when the facts indicate passive acts of neglect.

Additional Points About Abuse and Neglect Claims

There are two factors to keep in mind with these cases:

  1. There are usually other parties to pursue beyond the offending foster parent, and one is usually the agency. Employees do not appropriately address issues or allegations regarding mistreatment of the foster child.
  2. California law is quite favorable in terms of deadlines for sexual abuse of a foster child. Victims have 10 years from the date of the last act of abuse to file a lawsuit. 

Consult with an Oakland Abuse and Neglect Lawyer About Mistreatment in Foster Care

Compensation is available for victims who suffer long-term effects of mistreatment, and our attorneys at Venardi Zurada, LLP are committed to ensuring you receive a fair amount. For more information, please contact us to set up a no-cost case evaluation. We can meet with you at our offices in Oakland or Walnut Creek, CA to discuss details.


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