Children are among the most vulnerable people in society. People typically go to great lengths to protect them against both foreseeable and unexpected dangers.
Still, the very process of growing up and experiencing the world exposes kids to life’s hazards.
Eventually, injuries are inevitable. But when these injuries result from another person’s negligence or malice, the injured child’s parents or guardians have the right to seek damages. Fostoria child injury lawyers represent the interests of children and their families in civil lawsuits designed to obtain compensation for kids’ injuries. Contact an established personal injury lawyer to begin reviewing the facts of your case.
Children and Personal Injury Law
In most respects, injuries that are suffered by children as the result of accidents are handled in the same way as injuries that happen to adults. When they are younger, children follow us everywhere, and once they are old enough to be independent, they travel in the same world we do. Therefore, children are often injured in:
- Car accidents
- School bus accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Slips and falls
- Dog bites
These examples are considered injuries suffered due to another party’s negligence. Negligence claims require that the plaintiff prove that the defendant owed them a duty of care prior to the injury. They also need to prove that a failure in this duty of care caused their injuries.
What are Duty Laws for Children?
In general, children are afforded no additional duty of care than that provided to adults. For example, all riders in cars, whether they be drivers or passengers, are owed a duty of care by all other motorists. The same can be said for kids riding their bikes or simply walking down the street. Duty has no age restrictions.
Another important aspect of negligence law that affects cases involving children is the concept of the eggshell plaintiff. This is a legal turn of phrase for the idea that the plaintiff must be accepted as they are when determining fault and damages in accidents. Defendants in negligence cases often try to argue that the accident only happened because the victim was a child: the kid was a poor bike rider for example.
This has no bearing on the outcome of the case. It is the defendant’s conduct that determines fault in a case. The same can be said for any injuries suffered in the accident. Just because children are more susceptible to injury due to softer bones or smaller frames does not mean that a defendant can escape liability.
Filing a Child Injury Case
Cases where the injured person is a child present an interesting situation if the case needs to go to court. Normally, all plaintiffs in personal injury cases must be the person injured. However, court rules also state that a child cannot be the plaintiff in a case, with a few rare exceptions.
Therefore, all lawsuits alleging child injury must be filed by a parent or guardian on behalf of their child. The timing of the lawsuit is also essential to success, referred to as the statute of limitations. Fostoria child injury lawyers know that this law states that any lawsuit that alleges personal injury must be filed in court no more than two years after the injury happened. Even if a case appears to be a sure-fire win if this time limit is violated the case will fail.
Seeking the Help of an Attorney
Any personal injury can be a traumatic experience. The situation can be even more mentally taxing when the victim is a child.
Fortunately, the law allows children to seek damages from negligent parties in much the same way as adults. Fostoria child injury lawyers help families to understand their legal rights and to pursue damages within the framework of the law. No matter the type of case, there is a time limit that must be followed.