Parents go to great lengths to protect their children from harm. Despite taking every precaution, children sometimes still suffer serious injuries due to the carelessness and recklessness of others.
The Florida child injury lawyers at Freeman Injury Law are dedicated to representing the rights and interests of young victims in Fort Lauderdale, West Palm Beach, Port St. Lucie, Miami, Margate and Orlando. Our commitment includes fighting to ensure families of severely injured children are financially secure and have the means to cover medical bills, lost wages and more.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports the most common injuries to children in the U.S. are:
- Car Accidents
- Birth Injuries
- Crib Injuries
- Bicycle Accidents
- Pedestrian Accidents
- Sports Injuries
- Day Care Accidents/ Injuries
- School Injuries
- Playground Injuries
- Amusement Park Injuries
- Dog Bites
- Toy Injuries
- Medical Malpractice Injuries
Child abuse and youth violence are also serious problems that result in injury to children. The dangers vary depending on the age of the child. For example, babies and young children are at higher risk of suffocation and drowning, while older children are more susceptible to sports-related injuries.
Unintentional injury is the No. 1 cause of death among Florida children under the age of 19, according to the Florida Department of Health (DOH). In a single year recently:
- More than 500,000 children were treated for injuries in Florida hospital emergency departments.
- Emergency room charges for children under 19 were nearly $1 billion.
- Total hospital inpatient charges for that year were nearly $365 million.
When a child suffers severe injury as a result of someone else’s negligence, families need more than empathy. They need action. They need compensation and financial security. They need an avenue for legal recourse. They need justice.
Our experienced legal advocates will explore every possible avenue of compensation for you and your child. We will negotiate with all involved insurers and take the case to trial if necessary. We will seek to hold accountable all who failed in their duty to protect and/ or exercise reasonable care to prevent injury to your child.Car Accident Claims
Many child injury claims involve motor vehicle accidents. The CDC reports motor vehicle crashes kill more children in the U.S. than anything else. More than 800 children under age 14 die and another 800,000 are injured nationally every year in the U.S. in car accidents.
The vast majority of these crashes are foreseeable and preventable.
All motorists owe a duty of care to drive with caution and respect for all other motorists, pedestrians and bicyclists. That means obeying the speed limit and traffic signals, slowing down in school zones, stopping behind school buses loading and unloading and generally abiding the rules of the road.
Too many motorists fail in this regard.
Florida law requires children ages 5 and under to be properly restrained whenever inside a moving vehicle. Children under 3 have to be in a separate carrier (child safety seat) and children ages 4 and 5 have to be in a separate carrier, integrated child safety seat or use a safety belt (with booster seat if necessary).
In the event of a crash resulting in child injuries, our attorneys will investigate the circumstances to determine all who may be at-fault, including:
- Other drivers
- Car manufacturers (defective vehicle/ defective vehicle part/ defective car seats)
- Schools (school bus accidents)
- Cities/ states (poor road design/ maintenance)
Many child injuries occur on property belonging to others. Property owners generally owe a duty of care to all who are lawfully on the property to make sure the site is reasonably safe and free from known or knowable hazards.
When a property owner is aware of a dangerous situation and fails to take action to fix it or warn about it and someone is injured as a result, this is grounds for a premises liability claim.
Some examples might include:
- City Parks
- Swimming Pool Owners
- Day Cares
- Amusement Parks
It’s important to point out that property owners owe a special duty to child trespassers. Normally, trespassers are owed no real protection under Florida law. But per the “attractive nuisance doctrine,” property owners and site managers have a responsibility to make sure that any dangerous condition on the land that might attract a child (i.e., a swimming pool, old appliance, trampoline, etc.) is kept locked or otherwise secure.
In order to succeed in these cases, families usually need to show defendant knew children would likely be near that condition and the child did not understand the potential for danger.Defective Products
One would think products designed and manufactured for children would be made with special care. Unfortunately, all too often, these products fall short, even when they are used as intended.
For example: It’s estimated some 250,000 children are treated in U.S. emergency rooms every year just for toy-related injuries. That’s just one type of product-related danger that faces children.
Other potential product defects that pose danger to children include:
- Child car seats
- High Chairs
Although products may be recalled if they are identified as dangerous, this usually only happens after there are numerous reports of child injury. Makers of defective products can be held strictly liable if a child is hurt as a result of a design or manufacturing flaw that renders the product unreasonably dangerous.
Children who are treated by health care professionals – nurses, primary care physicians, surgeons, pharmacists and others – may be harmed if that individual fails to adhere to the accepted standard of care. In order to prevail in these claims, our child injury lawyers need to show the provider failed to provide an adequate level of care as would a similarly-qualified and situated health care professional would consider reasonable under the same circumstances.Dog Bites
F.S. 767.04 holds dog owners liable to anyone injured if that dog bites, even if the dog had never previously proven itself vicious.
There are approximately 11.5 million dogs in Florida, and 72 percent of all dog bites are children.
Although dog owners can limit their liability when they post a sign indicating a dog’s potential viciousness, this will not protect them if the child injured was under the age of 6.
If your child has been injured due to someone else’s negligence, the injury attorney you choose can impact the outcome of your case. Our committed, caring lawyers are ready to take your call and answer your questions.
Freeman Injury Law – 1-800-561-7777