It is a misdemeanor to leave a child 8 years old or younger “locked or otherwise confined” in a house or dwelling or “enclosure” so as to expose the child to danger of fire. N.C. Gen. Stat. Ann. § 14-318. Since any child left alone would likely be locking the door, this provision can be read as broad and punitive.
North Carolina has two categories of neglect: (1) lack of care, under which a child is considered neglected if they lack proper care, supervision, or discipline, have been abandoned or not provided necessary medical care; or who is not provided necessary remedial care; or who lives in an environment injurious to the juvenile’s welfare; or (2) conduct, behavior, or inaction of the juvenile’s parent, guardian, custodian, or caretaker that evidences a disregard of consequences of such magnitude that the conduct, behavior, or inaction constitutes an unequivocal danger to the juvenile’s health, welfare, or safety, but does not constitute abuse. N.C. Gen. Stat. Ann. § 7B-101(19a).
This webpage is not a legal document, and Let Grow does not take responsibility for the content. Be mindful that some localities have rules and guidelines even when the state does not. When in doubt, consult your local authorities to confirm the laws where you live. What’s more, laws change, as do judicial interpretations of them, and this webpage may not be updated immediately.
Right now, most states’ neglect laws are incredibly open-ended. They say things like, “Parent must provide proper supervision.” We agree! But people have different ideas of what that entails. Select a state below to learn more about their laws, policies and how Let Grow is helping.
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