What To Do When a Child is Injured at School

Chicago Injury Lawyer Langdonemison.Com

No one wants to hear their child has been injured at school, and it’s easy to jump on the defensive. However, it’s important to remain calm and take the proper steps to care for your child, understand what happened, and determine if any further action needs to be taken.

Speak with School Officials

Have a discussion with teachers, administrators, or other staff who witnessed the incident firsthand. Ask questions about where it occurred, how it happened, if proper supervision or school protocols were in place and followed, and if they have filed an incident report. Take notes during this conversation and request a copy of any completed reports.

Review School Policies

Every school should have procedures and protocols in place for student injuries, and you have a right to review them. For example, if your child broke their wrist on the playground, find out the school’s supervision policies for recess and if they were followed at the time. This can help you decide what further actions to take.

Explore an Insurance Claim

Before hiring an injury lawyer, you can file a claim through your child’s medical insurance or the school’s liability insurance. This route doesn’t assign blame but can assist with covering injury-related expenses. An attorney or school administrator should be able to facilitate this process or provide more guidance.

Attempt to Resolve Issues with the School Directly

Unless the injuries and surrounding circumstances are extremely severe or proof of negligence is clear, you may be able to address the matter directly with the school. Discuss with administrators any policy changes, added supervision or precautions they intend to implement to prevent similar incidents going forward. This gives them the chance to remedy issues before getting lawyers involved.

Consider Meeting with a School Lawyer

To show willingness to address what occurred seriously, your child’s school may have their legal counsel or attorney meet with you and other staff involved in the incident. While intimidating, be open to presenting questions and concerns during this meeting. Listen carefully to their perspective while gathering additional details.

Consider Legal Assistance

In some injury cases, parents may want to speak with an attorney to determine if the injuries occurred due to any negligence on the school’s part. This could be lack of supervision, unsafe facilities, failure to follow safety protocols, not providing proper first aid, etc. An attorney can analyze the evidence, policies, and laws to establish if opening a lawsuit against the school is feasible or advisable.

Filing a Lawsuit

If you have reviewed all the evidence and circumstances around your child’s injury and found grounds to take legal action, you would file a civil lawsuit against the school district claiming negligence. The first step is typically to file a claim or notice of intent to sue with the school district itself. If that claim is rejected or does not lead to a satisfactory settlement, a personal injury lawyer can then prepare summons and complaint documents to be served to the school, starting formal lawsuit proceedings. The lawsuit is filed with the court system in the jurisdiction in which the injury occurred. A judge will then be assigned to the case to oversee the litigation moving forward between both legal teams as they carry out pretrial procedures and gather evidence to either prove or refute the claim of negligence. If a settlement cannot be reached beforehand, eventually, a trial will be scheduled for a judge or jury to issue a definitive ruling.

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