Because of their vulnerabilities, children are especially susceptible to injuries. These injuries can arise from car accidents, defective toys, animal attacks, playground accidents, or even other people’s negligence.
If your child sustains an injury due to someone else’s fault, you’re not left without recourse against the party who caused it.You have the right to file a child injury lawsuit on behalf of your child. In this article, you’ll learn more about child injury lawsuits.
What Are Child Injury Lawsuits?
Child injury lawsuits are legal actions that allow parents and other legal guardians to file a claim on behalf of a child against the party at fault. The primary purpose of these lawsuits is to seek compensation for the child’s injury and the other losses they sustained because of the incident.
In most cases, the types of compensation an injured child can recover are the same for adults. These may include compensation for economic losses, such as medical bills, as well as noneconomic damages, like loss of enjoyment of life, emotional anguish, disfigurement, and loss of a body part.
Also, the compensation for these losses may depend on some factors, including the extent and severity of the sustained injury. Moreover, in many states, a trust account should be set up to hold the child’s compensation until they reach the legal age, which is 18 years old.
However, if you want to ensure your child’s rights and future are protected, it’s best to consult a dedicated lawyer from reputable law offices like www.ltbaker.com and similar firms. They can help you get fair and full compensation for your child’s injury. They would also advise you on all the details you need to know about your case, including when to file the lawsuit.
When Should You File A Child Injury Lawsuit?
To succeed in your action, one of the important things you need to familiarize yourself with is the time within which to bring thelegal claim to court. The statute of limitations for filing a child injury case on behalf of the minor varies from one state to another. But usually, it’s between 1 and 3 years from the date of the accident.
The child may also file a claim themselves against the party at fault, but the statute of limitation doesn’t start to run until they reach the age of 18. This means if your state follows a 2-year statute of limitations for injury cases, for example, the time limit starts when the injured child turns 18. Therefore, the lawsuit may be filed until the child is 20 years of age.
However, the laws that govern these deadlines can be challenging to navigate. That’s why it’s best to hire a lawyer to know exactly how much time you have to file a lawsuit.
How Can You Prove Liability?
Since minor children can’t file an injury lawsuit until they reach the age of majority, their parents or appointed legal guardian may bring the case on their behalf. However, instituting a child injury lawsuit in court can be tricky. You need to prove the following elements of negligence to establish the other party’s liability:
- Duty of care: The party at fault had a duty of care to ensure the child’s safety. For example, a toy manufacturer had a duty to avoid making toys with hazardous materials that could harm children.
- Breach of duty: The offending party violated the duty of care by committing negligent acts or failing to do what a reasonable person should do under similar circumstances.
- Causation: The at-fault party’s negligent acts were the proximate cause of the child’s injury.
- Damage: The child suffered an injury, which resulted in expensive medical bills, emotional distress, and other significant losses.
There are many things to consider when proving the other party’s liability. That’s why you need to work with an experienced lawyer to help you gather evidence to support your claim. These can include medical records, witness testimonies, and photos of the accident scene and injury.
However, in some cases, the other party may raise contributory negligence if the child victim shared some degree of fault in the accident that caused their injury. If proven, this denies the childthe full compensation they deserve. However, the application of this doctrine varies depending on the state you live in.
For example, in some states, it’s presumed that children under the age of 7 to 14 are incapable of committing negligent acts. But those who are above 14 years old can be negligent unless there’s evidence to the contrary.
An injury to a child can be devastating to the family. However, certain personal injury laws provide the parents or legal guardian an opportunity to file an injury lawsuit to obtain compensation on behalf of the injured child. Therefore, if your kid was injured in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, keep this guide in mind to learn how to navigate a child injury lawsuit. By doing so, you’ll know what steps to take to ensure success for your child’s injury case.