Was your child injured in a car accident caused by a negligent driver in South Carolina? If so, you can file a personal injury lawsuit against the other driver in order to seek compensation for damages, including your child’s injuries.
Statistics Regarding Car Accidents Involving Children
The U.S. Department of Transportation (specifically the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, or NHTSA) reports the following statistics regarding accidents involving children:
- Approximately 20 percent of unnecessary injuries sustained in a car accident are caused by incorrect usage of child restraint systems (i.e., car seats and boosters).
- Children under 12 months old have the most head and chest injuries (e.g., concussions, bruises, and cuts) of any age group.
- When involved in rollover accidents, children are more likely to sustain serious and even incapacitating injuries.
- More than any other age group, children between one and seven years old sustained skull base fractures as a result of vehicle accidents.
- When involved in vehicle accidents, children commonly have injuries to their heads, brains, and spines.
- Children age ten and over are more likely to have lung injuries than their younger counterparts.
Further, the NHTSA reports that in vehicle accidents where children sustain injuries, those injuries are typically more serious than those causing injuries to older teens and adults. Given the above statistics, that may not come as a big surprise. Head and brain injuries are particularly harmful to young children, whose brains are still developing; injuries such as these, at that age, can have long-lasting, far-reaching repercussions, and symptoms of the damage may not manifest until months or even years after the accident! A toddler who suffers a concussion during a car accident may have sustained damage to their frontal lobe, for example, but parents may not realize the damage until the child enters their pre-teen years and starts to have problems interacting socially.
Even when accidents leave children visibly unscathed, parents may hire a personal injury attorney weeks or months afterward. If your child suffered any head trauma (symptoms may include but aren’t limited to vision loss, speech difficulties, severe headaches, and unusual irritability) as a result of a car accident, you should consider hiring a personal injury attorney experienced in dealing with car accident cases involving injuries to children. Because of the severity of repercussions affecting children, it’s important to have a knowledgeable attorney on your side to help you get the compensation you deserve.
Medical Payments Coverage
Your auto insurance policy may include “medical payments coverage,” which will cover any medical expenses that arise when you are involved in a car accident. This component of coverage will usually serve to get you reimbursed or paid directly regardless of who is at fault, and even if you have this coverage, you may still choose to bring a lawsuit against the driver at fault. If you or your child(ren) are ever injured in a car accident, you should think about all of the benefits of hiring a Spartanburg, SC personal injury lawyer like Double Aught Injury Lawyers
Double Aught Injury Lawyers Can Help You Get the Compensation Your Child Deserves
If your child sustained mental or physical injuries in a car accident due to the other driver’s negligence, you should call our team of personal injury attorneys to represent you and your child in court. Double Aught Injury Lawyers will do whatever it takes to get you the compensation you deserve:
- Thoroughly investigate the circumstances of the accident and gather evidence in order to present your case to the court
- Stand up to insurance companies that don’t take into consideration your child’s best interest
- Manage the hassle of paperwork, legal forms, and bills for any medical expenses incurred as a result of the accident
- Seek advice from medical professionals who can be brought into court to describe the severity of injuries your child sustained in the accident
- Make sure that you receive the compensation you need (for now and into the future) in order to pay for the immediate and potentially long-last repercussions of their accident injuries
Punitive Damages for Injuries to a Child
During a car accident lawsuit trial, the court can find the at-fault driver guilty of more than simple negligence; if that happens in your case, you could receive exemplary or punitive damages. Some examples of the kind of driving that may warrant this include intentionally malicious, vindictive, reckless behavior such as driving drunk, texting while driving, incompetence, excessive speeding, and violating traffic laws.
Special Rules for Cases for Injured Minors
These kinds of court cases that result in monetary settlements have special rules to make sure that the settlement monies are used properly. The special rules apply depending on how much money the minor is supposed to receive (net, not gross).
When children receive settlements for injuries they sustained in car accidents, the money they receive is theirs and their alone; it should not be used for children’s maintenance and upkeep. Conservators who misspend their children’s settlement monies commit a court order violation.
- If the minor will receive $2,500 or less, no court approval or appointed conservator is needed.
- If the minor will receive $2,500-10,000, the court must approve it, but no appointed conservator is required.
- If the minor will receive $10,000-25,000, the court must approve it and although one is usually recommended, the law permits some case settlements without appointment of a conservator.
- If the minor will receive more than $25,000, the settlement must be approved by the Circuit Court, and there must be an appointed conservator.
For help with your accident case, contact Double Aught Injury Lawyers at (864)777-0000 for a FREE consultation.
Bryan Ramey is a Personal Injury Attorney who practices in the upstate of South Carolina. He graduated from The University of South Carolina School of Law, and has been practicing law for 27 years now. Bryan Ramey believes in representing the injured. Learn more about his experience by clicking here.