Brian Morton & Co. Solicitors – Child Injury Experts

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The process of bringing a personal-injury claim on behalf of a child differs from that involving an adult.

Subject to District Court approval, an adult can make a claim on a child’s behalf as the child’s ‘next friend’. The ‘next friend’ must also accept any financial liability for bringing the claim should the claim be lost.

If an accident claim for a child is successful the compensation awarded must be approved by the court. The sum is then paid into court funds where it will remain until the child reaches the age of 18.

Time restrictions for child injury compensation do not start until the child reaches the age of 18. They then have two years from their 18th birthday in which to claim compensation for the injury they sustained as a child. It is a good idea to pursue these claims much earlier to make the solicitor’s work of gathering evidence in support of the claim more efficient.

Immediately after an accident, your priority should be to seek medical attention for the child involved. The medical practitioner should record all injuries and any distress experienced by the child. Even minor injuries can develop into long-term health problems. Any injury to a child that may restrict their ability to work later in life may qualify for an award of special damages.

If a child is involved in an accident, you should do the following:

  1. See a medical professional for advice or care. Visit a doctor as soon as possible after an accident. Even if you initially believe that the injuries are not serious, problems can develop.  You will require medical reports to pursue any compensation claims. Keep full records of all medical appointments relevant to the case.
  2. Take photographs. Photographs of potential hazards and of signs that are not clearly displayed in dangerous areas will be useful proof in your compensation claim. Make sure to photograph all factors that led to the accident.
  3. Record events. It is important to record your first impressions of an accident as soon as possible. Note the time and date of the accident and note all circumstances that contributed to the accident. Write down exactly what happened in as much detail as possible. This can be helpful in determining who was at fault and whether you are entitled to make a claim.
  4. Report the accident. Report the accident to the relevant authorities. You may be asked to complete an accident form. Request a copy of all accident forms you complete and file them with your personal records of the accident.

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We identify ourselves with our clients’ requirements and work with our clients to help them achieve their goals.

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