Injuries to Children

Published on June 05, 2012   Trevor A. Taylor

Injuries to Children

When a child is injured through no fault of his own, the impact on the family can be significant.   The Law Office of Trevor A. Taylor has experience helping families through this difficult process.  Trevor Taylor is a board certified personal injury trial lawyer who has experience prosecuting these claims on behalf of children.

Injury claims of children, whether the result of an auto accident, slip and fall, dog bite, or medical malpractice, are different from most other claims.  Because a minor does not by law have capacity to procedurally assert the claim, it is often brought by his or her parent or guardian.  The allocation of damages is also unique in claims involving minors.  The parent or guardian can recover the past medical expenses that they may have incurred for the child’s treatment.  The physical pain or physical impairment caused by the accident, however, is the sole property of the child.

After an injury, it is important that the injured child receive the follow up medical care he or she needs.  If the child’s parent(s) have health insurance, there may be easy access to medical care.  If the parent or guardian does not have health insurance, additional treatment can become more difficult.  In the absence of health insurance, The Law Office of Trevor A. Taylor can access networks of providers to get your child the medical treatment he or she needs.  A board certified personal injury trial lawyer can also help with the claims of medical providers, like hospital liens, or health insurers (in the form of subrogation or reimbursement demands) to make sure that the recovery to the child is maximized.

The settlement of a child’s claim also involves special considerations.  As noted above, the damages may need to be allocated between the parent or guardian and the minor child.  A parent or guardian could receive the funds immediately.  The minor child, though, wouldn’t have capacity to access the money until they reach majority.  This requires that the money be held in trust for the minor child.  Sometimes the money would be held in the registry of the court; if the recovery is significant enough, a structured settlement (with funds invested in an annuity) may be the appropriate trust vehicle.

If a settlement of a case is reached, insurance companies sometimes request a court order approving the settlement.  Referred to as a “friendly suit,” an insurance company will file a lawsuit in a case that has been settled and ask the court to appoint an ad litem to review the settlement.  The ad litem will then make a recommendation to the court as to whether the suit was in the best interest of the minor child.  If the court concludes that the settlement is in the child’s best interest, it will enter a court order approving the settlement.  Trevor Taylor has been appointed on numerous occasions by the court to serve as an ad litem in cases involving the settlement of a minor’s personal injury claim.

If you would like a FREE consulting involving an injury to a child, contact The Law Office of Trevor A. Taylor today!

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