Lehigh County Child Injury Lawyer
No parent or guardian wants to see a child injured due to the negligent actions of another. An injured child can be more than physically injured but can be impacted emotionally, as well. Emergency medical procedures, physical recovery, and mental rehabilitation can be very costly. Fortunately, the negligent party could be held accountable for their reckless actions.
A Lehigh County child injury lawyer could advocate for the child and seek to hold the negligent parties responsible. An experienced personal injury attorney could investigate the accident, collect evidence, and calculate your child’s damages. Reach out to a knowledgeable attorney to learn about your legal options.
Types of Child Injury Accidents
An injury could occur anytime and anywhere. The most common child injury accidents occur due to:
- Amusement park accidents
- Motor vehicle collision
- Playground accident
- School bus accidents
- Negligent supervision
- Property accidents
- Hazardous products
A seasoned Lehigh County child injury lawyer could review the facts of a case and determine which party could be held liable for damages.
Requirements to File a Lawsuit on Behalf of a Minor
A minor cannot file a lawsuit on their behalf for their injuries. Under 231 Pennsylvania Code Rule 2027, a minor must be represented by a guardian when the child is a party to a lawsuit. The lawsuit must be controlled and supervised by that guardian.
Therefore, the guardian, rather than the child, will be the individual who discusses legal strategy, pursues damages, and makes decision-based upon the case in consultation with their child injury attorney.
Deadline to File
For an adult, there is a two-year statute of limitations on a personal injury claim brought in Pennsylvania under 42 Pennsylvania Statutes § 5524(2). The statute of limitations immediately begins from the date the injury occurs. Once this period has expired, the case may be dismissed.
However, the statutory rule for minors is different. Under 42 Pa. Stat §5533, the statutory period does not begin until the injured child has turned 18-years-old. The deadline starts running when the minor turns 18, meaning they will have until the age of 20 to bring a lawsuit.
Comparative Negligence in Child Personal Injury Cases
A significant difference between adult and child personal injury cases involves comparative negligence. Comparative negligence is a legal defense that places some of the blame for an accident on both parties. Therefore, for an adult, so long as their percentage of fault is below 50 percent, they will be able to recover compensation for damages per Pa. Stat §7102.
Comparative negligence is different in the case of children. Under Pennsylvania law, a child under the age of seven cannot be considered “negligent” under any circumstances. Therefore, a child under seven who received any damages award would be entitled to the full amount.
Similarly, there is a presumption that children between seven and 14 are not negligent, and even children older than 14 are still not held to the same standard as an adult. A child over the age of 14 is presumed to be capable of negligence. An experienced Lehigh county child injury lawyer may provide more clarity and explanation regarding these standards and other aspects of a child’s case.
Reach Out to a Lehigh County Child Injury Attorney
A child injured in an accident can be a traumatic experience for the child and their parent or guardian. Additionally, the costs of an injury could be devastating for a family, as well. A seasoned car accident lawyer could help a family recover compensation for damages such as medical expenses, pain and suffering, mental anguish and loss of enjoyment of life.
Call today to schedule a consultation with a Lehigh County child injury lawyer to discuss your legal options.