Summer is what most kids look forward to at the end of the school year. It’s a time for barbecuing, swimming, and spending time with your family. However, more time at home means more time around abusive or neglectful relatives and neighbors for children who experience verbal, physical, and sexual abuse. Not all at-home abuse is easy to spot with the naked eye. One of the most common forms of abuse that children experience is sexual abuse.

Sexual crimes committed against adolescents are often performed by a person in a position of power, such as school or summer camp staff, or a parent or guardian at home. Children who are victims of sexual abuse can develop long-term issues such as eating disorders, anxiety, depression, and other mental health problems that can last a lifetime.

Abusers can be prosecuted and punished in a criminal court; however, it is essential to consult a personal injury attorney for a victim of abuse to obtain compensation. Attorneys like William Ogle understand how to earn compensation from abusers and negligent perpetrators. In addition, speaking up and reporting any possible cases of abuse or negligence can protect children from future abuse.

Adults who work with children are typically trained to identify warning signs of possible abuse by reading body language. They are trained to observe behavior during class and the physical appearances of adolescents in person and in an online setting.

The Florida Department of Children and Families defines child abuse as “any willful act or threatened act that results in any physical, mental, or sexual injury or harm that causes or is likely to cause the child’s physical, mental, or emotional health to be significantly impaired.” The department defines neglect for a child as being “deprived of, or is allowed to be deprived of, necessary food, clothing, shelter, or medical treatment or a child is permitted to live in an environment when such deprivation or environment causes the child’s physical, mental, or emotional health to be significantly impaired or to be in danger of being significantly impaired.”

If you believe you have witnessed a child or adolescent displaying signs of abuse or neglect, you can directly report this information to the Florida Department of Children and Families via the abuse hotline. You can dial the hotline at 1-800-962-2873 or report possible cases of abuse online at Calling an abuse hotline is the first step in saving a child that suffers from abuse or neglect.

At Ogle Law, we can file a civil claim against an individual, institution, or entity that has been caught abusing or neglecting children. Attorney William Ogle is a National Board-Certified Trial Specialist with experience in child sexual abuse cases. As a firm that practices personal injury and negligence law, we can help victims find the justice and compensation they deserve. To speak with one of our experienced lawyers in Daytona Beach or Gainesville, call (386) 287-0234 or fill out our contact form.