Filing a Child Injury Lawsuit

It can be hard for any parent to see their child or children being involved in an accident, particularly if their child or children are innocent. If the parents (or legal guardian) would like pursue a lawsuit against the ones at-fault for the injuries or damages that has been done, it may help to have legal representation.

The first thing parents (or guardians) should understand that children under 18 years of age are considered minor in the eyes of the law. This means they can’t file a lawsuit by themselves, thus the court can appoint the guardian or parent to file the lawsuit in behalf of the child/children. To begin the lawsuit, the parent or guardian should submit a petition to the court. If conflict should arise (such as the parent has caused the accident, or has a part to play in the injuries attained by the child/children) the court can appoint another person to represent the welfare of the child/children.

In a lawsuit, the plaintiff is the victim of the accident (or the ones who have filed the lawsuit). In this case technically, the parents or guardian are the plaintiff, and the defendant is the one who is being sued. It is the plaintiff’s job to personally give or provide a copy of the summons and complaint to the defendant. There are times where the case can be settled outside of court, but if both parties do not agree on the settlement, then the lawsuit proceeds to court.

Additional documents are then filed in court. These documents are filed in court with a fee to be paid to the clerk. The summons is sent to the person/persons responsible for the accident, damages, and injuries suffered by the victim, and the other party is given a certain amount of time to answer the summons. A complaint is the document that gives the necessary facts of the accident, and supports the cause of action. The complaint gives the specific details of all the reasons for the lawsuit.

Just like in adult personal injury lawsuits, there are statutes of limitations; however, for a child or children, these statutes of limitations are delayed. The court will wait until the child reaches the legal age of 18 years old , and then the child/children has three years to either settle the claim or pursue the lawsuit.

When filing a lawsuit, it’s important to seek the assistance of a lawyer. Lawyers are trained in the legal process and know what kinds of roadblocks to expect and how to get around them. They are familiar with law and how to prove injuries based on what is required of the law. Their knowledge can be instrumental in getting a lawsuit filed on time and with sufficient evidence to make a strong case. This can be the difference between success and failure.