Making a personal injury claim on behalf of a child
No matter how much we try and protect them, it is fairly common for children to suffer personal injuries. Read more about what a personal injury is.
Whether they gain a head injury when falling down the stairs at school or fracture an arm when falling from an unsteady climbing frame at the local play park, kids will be kids. Read more about scenarios in which a personal injury may occur.
But, remember they still have a legal right to personal injury compensation. Read more about making personal injury claims and your entitlements.
Can I make a claim?
It is not possible for a person under the age of 18 to pursue their own personal injury claim as they lack legal capacity. However, it is possible for a 'Litigation Friend' to act on their behalf. A Litigation Friend is usually a parent or any other adult that the child is comfortable with who is willing to protect the child's interests while making decisions on their behalf.
Will the claim process take long?
Since personal injury cases are complex, litigation can be a drawn-out process. The length of the case will be determined by:
- The age of the child
- The severity of the child's injury
- The child's recovery progress
A claim is rarely settled until the long-term prognosis for the child is plausibly certain. Until then it is impossible to estimate an appropriate compensation amount as issues such as future care and treatment require careful consideration.
Is there a time limit for making a claim?
If the person is under 18-years-old when the personal injury occurs then they have until three years after their 18th birthday to make a claim. So, as long as court proceedings begin before the child's 21st birthday, the claim is qualified.
However, it is at the discretion of the courts to decide whether claims outside the limitation period can go ahead, depending on the circumstances of the case. Our personal injury solicitors can provide you with further details of this.
How much compensation will be awarded?
The compensation amount will depend on the severity of the personal injury suffered and any resulting damages. If the claim is successful the compensation could include awards for general damages such as pain and suffering, special damages such as medical expenses and future expenses such as special education. Read more about what can be claimed for.
When will the compensation be received?
The court will ensure that any compensation that your child is awarded is invested wisely. It may be suggested that amounts under £2,500 are invested in a National Savings Bank or building society account for safe keeping.
Larger sums are different. While the court may authorise for some to be paid immediately to partly recover costs already incurred or expenses for the child's immediate future the remaining money is likely to be invested at the decision of the Court Funds Office.
Payments out of the fund to pay for medical treatments and educational purposes can often be made on request. However, the full amount of the personal injury settlement is usually released from the Court Funds Office after the child reaches the age of 18.
Making a personal injury claim on behalf of a child today
Making a personal injury claim with us couldn't be simpler, just fill out an online assessment form or call our friendly team today.
Thereís no risk when it comes to making a claim with us, as our expert solicitors work on a no win, no fee basis. This means that in the event your claim is unsuccessful, you wonít face any legal fees. Thatís what no win, no fee is all about Read more about no win no fee.
If you require any further details about making a personal injury claim on behalf of a child simply give our claim team a call on 0800 197 32 32 and they will be glad to help.