Can I make a claim for injuries sustained as a child?

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When a child is injured in an accident - whether it be in a car, whilst out playing, whilst riding a bicycle or due to a defective product - the main concern of the parents or guardians is to seek immediate medical treatment and ensure that the child receives the best care possible to aid their recovery.

But if the accident wasn't the fault of the infant, then compensation may be able to be obtained for the injuries and medical treatment. Below outlines the choices that are available in relation to:

  • Making a compensation claim for injuries you sustained as a child
  • How parents or guardians can claim compensation for their child's injuries
  • How long you have to make a claim when a child is involved

When can you claim for a child injury?

If a child is injured in an accident caused by somebody else's negligence the parents or guardians of that child have two choices with regard to pursuing a claim for personal injury compensation on behalf of their child.

They may either take steps soon after the accident to pursue a claim on behalf of the child, or they may choose to take no action and allow the child, upon reaching adulthood, to make their own decision about whether they wish to make a claim for compensation for the injuries they sustained as a child.

If the former course of action is taken then any compensation awarded to the child will be placed into the court fund and invested until they reach the age of 18.

Time limits in child claims

The general rule in personal injury claims is that you have three years from the date of the accident in which to make a claim for compensation. However in the case of children, this three year time limit does not start until the child reaches their 18th birthday. This means that they have until their 21st birthday in which to pursue a claim.

If therefore you sustained injuries in an accident as a child and your parents or guardian did not make a claim for compensation on your behalf, you still have until your 21st birthday to pursue a claim.

If you think you may be entitled to make a claim for an injury you sustained as a child you, should seek immediate advice from a specialist personal injury solicitor who will be able to advise you on your chances of pursuing a successful claim.

Personal Injury Claim for a Child

If your child suffers an injury due to a non fault accident, it is recommended that you obtain advice from personal injury solicitors as soon as possible. While a claim can be made when the child becomes an adult, it can be much more difficult to obtain evidence to support the claim if many years have passed.

More importantly securing compensation immediately after a child's accident will ensure that any specialist medical or rehabilitation treatments are included as part of the settlement.

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