“There can be no keener revelation of a society’s soul than the way in which it treats its children.”
– Nelson Mandela
- Daytona Office:
128 Orange Avenue Unit 306
Daytona Beach, FL 32114
Phone: 844-4KIDLAW (4543529); 754-888-KIDS (5437)
- Attorneys: Lisa M. Elliott is based there, Howard Talenfeld, Stacie J. Schmerling, Justin Grosz
Daytona Beach is centrally located between Orlando, Gainesville, and Jacksonville, FL where Florida’s privatization of child welfare services has struggled and in many cases failed the children. Because the Justice for Kids attorneys have seen many cases of children re-abused in foster care and mishandled adoptions causing catastrophic injuries to children and their families in the central to northeast central region of Florida, we have opened a Daytona Beach office and located a veteran children’s rights attorney there to help children who are re-abused in care and injured in other settings.
- Lawsuit For Wrongful Death and Survival Claims. Lawsuit filed in the Northern District of Florida against lead community-based agency, sub-contacted case management agency, and case manager for wrongful death and survival claims under state law and 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for failing to prevent the rapid and significant mental health deterioration of foster child ultimately resulting in her death by suicide after she ran away from the case management agency’s office while unsupervised despite her known history of running away and suicide attempts. The case was resolved for undisclosed amounts.
- Firm Sues Florida Dept. of Children & Families, Settles Negligence Case for $14.26 Million. Child abuse attorney Howard Talenfeld filed a civil rights complaint in federal court on behalf of 19 children against nine Florida Department of Children and Families employees who were responsible for the children’s adoption and/or investigations of the abuse allegations. The children were allowed to be adopted and lived in various locations with her between Orlando, FL, and Gainesville, FL, even though there had been a prior verified abuse report against the mother. The children were victims of bizarre punishments and beatings throughout their childhood. The State of Florida settled all of the Plaintiffs’ claims, including a negligence claim in Alachua County against DCF, for a total of $14.26 million. Read the case here
- Lawsuit for Negligent Investigation and Failure To Protect Two Young Children From Foreseeable Abuse And Neglect. This lawsuit was filed in Lake County, FL against DCF and private community-based child welfare providers for negligent investigation and failure to protect two young children from foreseeable abuse and neglect in the care of their mother and her paramour. Despite the high-risk factors present due to unexplained injuries to both children, the family was placed under Voluntary Protective Supervision with no court oversight. The family relocated from Osceola County to Lake County and the case was closed without court intervention despite the significant risk to the children. Four months later, the boy, who was sixteen months old, died due to abuse and was found to have numerous fractures in various stages of healing and a skull fracture. The girl, who was two years old, witnessed her brother’s murder and was also found to have several fractures and other injuries. The case resolved against DCF for sovereign immunity limits of $200,000 and for an undisclosed amount as to the private agencies.
- Foster Child Victim of Multiple Incidents of Child-On-Child Sexual Abuse By Known Sexual Predator Living in the Same Group Home. This lawsuit was filed in Orange County, FL on behalf of a former foster child from Jacksonville against an agency that owned and operated a therapeutic group home for failure to protect the then 13-year-old from multiple incidents of child-on-child sexual abuse by a 17-year-old known sexual predator living in the same group home. The case resolved for an undisclosed amount.
- H.A.L. v. Foltz: Department of Children & Family Services, 176 F. Supp. 2d 1310 (S.D. Fla. 2001). Several children in foster care were placed and allowed to be with children who were sexually aggressive and known perpetrators of sexual abuse. Child Abuse attorney Howard Talenfeld served as lead counsel in this case which resulted in the federal court precedent that establishes the right of children not to be sexually victimized. After a successful appeal, this case resolved for $1.725 million.
- Confidential Settlement for Female Student-Athlete in Hazing Incident. Our client was a standout high school soccer player who was recruited to play in college. During her freshman year, while still a minor, she was assaulted and traumatized in a hazing incident as part of a school-sanctioned athletic program. The incident derailed her collegiate career and drove her to withdraw from school. Given our client’s age, it became imperative to move swiftly in an effort to help keep her on track academically. We were fortunate enough to persuade the school into resolving the matter, without protracted litigation, for a confidential amount that has afforded our client with the opportunity to relocate, enroll in another university and re-chart her path.
- Settlement in Wrongful Adoption Claim. A wrongful adoption claim was asserted in which the privatized case manager handling the adoption failed to disclose that two adopted children had prior disrupted adoptions because of severe behavioral issues including tantrums and reactive attachment disorder. After the behaviors reoccurred in the adoptive home where that parents believed their natural children were harmed, the case settled for an undisclosed amount, the family was stabilized, and the adoptions were not disrupted.
- Settlement for Brothers Placed with Pedophile. Two brothers were placed in Brevard County, FL with a pedophile who was a known gambler and had multiple arrests and convictions yet was later permitted to adopt them. They were sexually victimized by the pedophile. This case settled for an undisclosed amount, which permitted these children to receive the education they need and appropriate services for the remainder of their lives.
Other Florida Areas Served By Our Child Protection Attorneys:
Fort Lauderdale Child Abuse Law Firm
Jacksonville Child Abuse Law Firm
West Palm Child Abuse Law Firm
Tallahassee Child Abuse Law Firm