How to File a Personal Injury Claim for a Child
Do you find yourself in a situation where your child was injured and you want to file a personal injury claim? These types of claims are a little different compared to filing one for an adult. We want to share some of the major aspects you will need to know when it comes to filing a personal injury claim for a child.
Common Personal Injury Claims for Children
Children are no stranger to injuries, but filing a personal injury claim for a child includes unique issues that are slightly different than adult claims. Although most aspects of a minor’s injury claim would be the same as an adult’s claim, there are a few important aspects that are different when it comes to children. Here are some of the top injuries involving children:
•Defective products, such as toys or furniture
Regular Injuries vs. Injuries for Claims
Not all injuries qualify for a personal injury claim, and often these include scraped knees, bumped heads, etc. Typically, an injury claim is only actionable when there is negligence that led to the injury. In the legal sense, negligence is defined as failing to do something that a reasonable person or entity would have done, or doing something that a reasonable person or entity would not have done. If that negligent conduct then causes another to suffer an injury, then such negligently inflicted injuries can be the basis of a personal injury claim. There are a few things a parent or guardian would have to prove in order for the claim of the child to be approved:
•The person or company at fault has a duty of care to prevent harm from coming to the child.
•The faulted party has a breach of duty by doing something wrong or failing to do what any reasonable person would do in the scenario.
•The breach of duty was the direct cause of the injury to the child.
•The child has verifiable injuries, supported by medical bills and evidence of emotional distress.
All of these must be proven, in order for the claim to be valid. If you cannot prove all of these points, the claim will most likely fail.
Statute of Limitations
The statute of limitations on a personal injury case for a minor is different than an adult in Tennessee. For adults, the limitation is one year from the date of the incident. Minors have the right to reach legal adulthood, which is 18 in Tennessee, before they pursue a claim, so the statute of limitations for personal injury claims for minors is one year from the date that they turned 18, as long as they were a minor when the incident occurred. There can be certain exceptions for limited types of claims, so always consult with a qualified personal injury attorney as soon as possible after the injury to ensure that you do not miss any deadlines.
Representing a Child
Since a child isn’t able to represent him or herself, someone must do it on his or her behalf. The people who are able to do this include one parent, both parents, a legal guardian, and the child’s lawyer.
The best option is to hire a personal injury claims lawyer early on in the process to help you with your case. These attorneys will be able to help determine if your claim is valid, and then they can take the next steps towards getting compensation.
Do you think you have a personal injury claim for a child? Contact one of our lawyers today to learn more about the next steps.