If a parent lies about a child's age and creates a Facebook account for a child that is nine years old, is this neglect?

My husband and I have custody of my step-daughter and I recently was told by my step-daughter that her biological mom created her a Facebook page account and I got really upset and told my husband I was going to file charges on neglect and abuse. Is this possible? I don't even have a Facebook account because I do not only have time, but do not trust what is put on there or trust people to use their best judgement. So I want to know if I can use this against her mom in court. I mean my step-daughter can be chatting and meet a pervert or something online and won't even know it. Now what i did the day before yesterday was create an account with a fictitious name just to get into her page. Some of her so called friends have things on their pages which she should not be seeing.

Fort Worth, TX -

Attorney Answers (2)

Michael L Rich

Michael L Rich

Child Abuse Lawyer - Waltham, MA

You and your husband are well-advised to monitor and talk to your step-daughter's mom about the child's online presence but I do not think it rises to the level of neglect. It is certainly not worth the hostility that would be caused between your husband and his daughter's mother to report this to anyone.

If your husband is unsuccessful in getting his daughter's mother to appropriately limit and monitor the child's access to Facebook and the Internet, he might want to talk to a family law attorney about filing for modification of the mother's parenting plan in order to impose reasonable limitations.

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Erin Patricia Farley

Erin Patricia Farley

Family Law Attorney - Petaluma, CA

I absolutely agree with Attorney Rich. You might also consider talking to your daughter about parameters for safe social media usage. Here is a great link on social media contracts for families:

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