Recklessness, bad decisions, mischief, and irresponsible fights are all part and parcel of a typical kid’s life, and more often than not, these actions lead to injuries. While childhood injuries can still occur at home, the large percentage occurs at school, where the risks of injuries from falls, slips, fights, and stampedes are considerably high, courtesy of peer pressure, and bad company, or negligent school staff.
But did you know you can sue for damages if your child gets injured while at school? Below is a brief guide on personal injury claims pertaining to injuries sustained in schools.
Personal Injury Claims Against Schools
Government agencies and institutions such as schools have special privileges that protect them from various lawsuits. For instance, you have up to 2 years to file a personal injury claim against a private school or company. However, in the case of a government institution, you will only be granted 120 days to do so. As such, if you intend to file a suit against your kid’s school, you need to do so within the shortest time possible to avoid getting frustrated along the way
Personal Injury Claims Involving Minors
The law requires courts to approve or decline the filing and settlement of personal injury claims involving minors in a fair and transparent way, taking into account the minor’s best interest. If the suit is successful, the court may issue orders on how the settlement amount will be issued and managed until the child comes of age.
Determining Who’s At Fault
The hardest part about all of this isn’t even the short deadlines for filing claims, but determining who was responsible for your child’s injury. As we all know, kids are sometimes reckless and impulsive in their actions, which can lead to injuries even without anyone else getting involved. It is also not uncommon for children to get themselves into risky situations, as they are naturally not aware of the consequences of their actions. As such, it is important to do some investigations to establish if your child was wholly or partially responsible for their injuries, before filing the lawsuit. If the defense can prove that they were not fully responsible, the court will reduce the compensation due.
What To Do Before Filing a Personal Injury Claim
Here are the first steps to take when your little one comes home injured:
- Take them to see a doctor
- Collect medical documentation, primarily the doctor’s report, detailing the injuries
- Call and inform the school about what happened
- Contact a personal injury lawyer
For a parent, few things are as stressful as seeing your child in pain, and having to file and proceed with a lawsuit only adds to the stress and frustration. However, knowing what to do in case you find yourself in that situation is one way to avoid panicking, and minimize stress in the unfortunate event that it happens. It also won’t hurt to get a good personal injury attorney in your speed dial!