Though children are adventurous and are prone to accidents, some accidents occur due to negligence and result to serious or life threatening injuries. Accidents involving children are handled differently as compared to adult personal injuries.
However, the main concern for parents is always the health and welfare of their children which often overshadow the need to file child injury claims. According to the law, anyone under 18 years is a minor and cannot engage a child personal injury solicitor or file a claim by themselves. Instead, an adult who may be their parent or guardian represents them as their next friend.What steps does the next friend follow when filing a child personal injury claim?
Before making a claim or considering legal proceedings, the first priority should be seeking medical care for the affected child. A child injury may be seem minor but develop into serious health conditions later on in life. Hence, thorough health investigations are necessary after an injury. The medical practitioner should record all the symptoms as they are used as evidence in court. After the medical assessment, contact your child personal injury solicitor to guide you through the following steps.
Recording and Reporting Accident Details
You must have a clear account of how the child accident happened before making a child injury claim. Record important facts like; date and time of accident, circumstances that lead to the accidents, contact details of accident witnesses, weather conditions at the time of accident and photos of the accident scene.
The Child Injuries Board
The next friend should obtain a medical report from the doctor who attended to the child after the accident. The next step should be completing an Injuries Board Foam A and sending it to the injuries board together with the detailed medical report and a 45 Euros fee. Based on the evidence and extent of the injury, the injuries board decides the compensation amount to be paid. Your child personal injury solicitor will advise you on whether to accept or decline the board’s suggestion.
If you accept the board’s suggestion, your child personal injury solicitor will apply to the courts to have the compensation paid in full. All child injury claims must be taken before a court for ruling; a sitting judge must evaluate the injuries and medical reports. The judge decides whether the compensation amount is appropriate. In case the board’s decision is declined, the child personal injury solicitor files court proceedings. The case may be settled with a court ruling or outside the court based on what involved parties agree.
When a child injury claim is successful completed and a settlement amount agreed on and approved by the court, the compensation amount is paid to the affected child once they reach 18 years. Once the child is 18 years, they should file a court application for the amount to be paid to them in full.