Your browser does not support JavaScript!

What Is Unintentional Child Abuse?

Unintentional child abuse is when a parent or caregiver causes harm to a child without deliberate intent. Whilst abuse can be unintentional, such actions can harm the child’s physical and mental well-being. In many cases, poverty plays a significant factor in unintentional child abuse with children experiencing neglect in different ways.  


What Constitutes Neglect?

Neglect can be difficult to detect as the signs aren’t always obvious. It is estimated that 10% of children in the UK have experienced neglect through no fault of their own.  According to the NSPCC, there are four types of neglect that children can experience:

Emotional Neglect

Emotional neglect is a type of unintentional child abuse whereby parents or caregivers fails to nurture a child, give them love and show them affection. Emotional neglect can also come in the form of humiliating a child or insulting them. Emotional neglect can devastate a child’s life, and the effects can last long into adulthood. 

Physical Neglect 

Physical neglect occurs when a parent or caregiver fails to meet a child’s physical needs, such as food, clothing or shelter. Physical neglect can be unintentional however no child deserves to live a life without basic human needs. 

Medical Neglect

Medical neglect is refusing to give your child proper health care. For example, not taking your child to the dentist or ignoring medical recommendations are forms of medical neglect. 

Educational Neglect 

When parents or caregivers fail to send their children to school, they are neglecting their educational needs and preventing their development. Educational neglect can be unintentional, for example, a parent may be bed-bound and unable to take a child to school, however, all children deserve a right to education and withholding this right from them is a form of neglect. 

Finding Support

The NSPCC offers therapeutic services to help parents and carers under pressure:

  • Building Blocks
  • Parents Under Pressure™.

Find out more about all NSPCC services by clicking here.

Get In Touch

If you suffered from neglect when you were younger or would like to claim on behalf of a child, you must be able to demonstrate the following:

  • That the neglect took place
  • That the claim has been brought within the time limit
  • That the survivor has suffered damage and is entitled to compensation. 

As each case is unique, it is best to give our team of experienced solicitors a call. After hearing your story, we will be able to best advise you on your potential claim. Please give us a call for a confidential chat on 0151 242 5111.