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New York City School Injury Attorney
Need a Lawyer for Child Injury at School in NY?
Parents and legal guardians should be able to send their children to school every day without being worried that they will suffer critical injuries due to another person‘s negligent actions. Unfortunately, this happens more often than you may think.
If your child has suffered injuries in an accident at school, you may be able to hold those responsible for your child’s suffering accountable. A New York City school injury lawyer at Dansker & Aspromonte LLP Associates can help you with your case.
Possible Causes of School Injuries in New York
Many people struggle to understand how their child could have suffered catastrophic injuries at school. Sadly, there are several possible causes of school accidents and incidents, such as:
- Slip and fall accidents
- Assault or fighting
- Sexual assault
- Negligent security
- School trip accidents
- School bus accidents
- Inadequate supervision
- A student being sent home with someone other than their parent or legal guardian
- Accidents involving dangerous materials such as knives or scissors
- Swimming pool accidents
Of course, these are only a few possible causes and types of school accidents and incidents that may produce serious injuries. If your child has been injured in another way, one of our team members can help you find out what legal options may be available to you and your family.
Who Is at Fault for School Injuries in New York City?
One primary reason families are hesitant to take legal action after their child has suffered an injury at school is because they are unsure who may be responsible for their child’s injuries.
However, multiple parties can be held responsible for your child’s safety and well-being while they are at school. Some of the parties that may be named in New York City school injury lawsuits include:
- The Board of Education
- Bus drivers
- The school district
- School staff members
- The school itself
Public School Injuries
Public schools are typically regulated by state school boards and their rules, and many state’s laws usually grant immunity to public school and their staff for particular injuries sustained by children while under the school’s care. What’s more, rules could require that notice be given to officials of the school prior to any action being taken against the facility. Sometimes, an action for injuries against a public school may be allowed, but there may be a cap on damages which limits how much compensation will be awarded to you. Notice requirements and time limits also determine such cases from ones that could be brought against private schools.
Actions taken against public schools need to be filed with administrative agencies, which can issue an award of damages for the child’s injuries. However, many states have very strict requirements regarding such procedures.
Private School Injuries
While private schools are not regulated by the exact rules as public schools, the operators and owners of private schools still have a duty to exercise reasonable care for the well-being and safety of children under their care.
Actions of Negligence
Actions against school employees, operators, and owners, can be brought as negligence against all the responsible parties involved for your child’s school-related injury. These injuries could be caused by teacher, other students, involve playground equipment, in-school equipment, bad food served in the cafeterias and at snack times, poorly maintained outdoor or indoor premises, failure to provide sufficient security to allow trespassers to access the premises, and even failure to administer required medication.
Schools and their negligent employees can be held responsible for negligence for injuries sustained by a child as a result of negligent supervision. If a supervisor or teacher fails to intervene when children are involved in rough play or even a fight, for instance, that failure to take action can be found to constitute negligence by the school and supervisor.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, typically children between 5 – 19 years of age experience a significant number of injuries as a result of intentional acts rather than negligent acts. When an injury could have been prevented by the supervisor in charge providing proper supervision, that inadequate supervision along with the intention acts of the perpetrator can be found to be the causes of the injuries the child sustained.
In some instances, when bullying or any other intentional acts by another child are the result of another child’s injuries, the parents of the child who caused the injuries can sometimes be held reliable, too.
Statute of Limitations for School Injury Claims in New York
When your family is ready to take action against the liable party, you need to be prepared to act quickly before the New York state statute of limitations expires. In general, cases against privately owned schools have a 3 year statute of limitations under CVP § 214.
However, cases against New York City public schools require that a Notice of Claim first be filed within 90 days of the injury and that you must also file your case within one year and 90 days of the injury. If you fail to file the Notice of Claim or Legal Complaint against The City of New York by the deadline, you could be prevented from recovering the compensation you deserve.
If your child is a minor, or in certain other situations, the statute of limitations may change. To find out how much time you have left to pursue your case, you will need to speak with a school injury attorney in detail about the circumstances of your case.
It is also important for you to consult a lawyer as soon as possible after an accident so that evidence can be preserved before it is lost. Very often the strength of your claim will depend upon the amount of time that has passed since your injury.
How a School Injury Lawyer In New York City Could Help You
After your child has suffered serious injuries in a school incident or accident in New York City, you may be unsure of what to do next. Should you reach out to the school for help? Maybe you should call the police? The answers are not always clear.
The good news is, when you work with a New York City personal injury attorney, you can receive the legal guidance and support you are looking for. Some of the ways your attorney can help you get through these difficult times include:
- Obtaining records from the school about the accident or incident
- Opening up an investigation into the accident to determine liability and causation
- Gathering relevant evidence to support your case, such as photographs, video footage from nearby homes or businesses, police and accident reports, medical records, and more
- Speaking with any witnesses, teachers, staff, and other experts regarding the school accident in question
- Establishing whether incidents and accidents like these have happened before at the school
- Preparing to negotiate with the liable parties and bring your case to court if necessary to recover fair compensation for your child’s suffering
Although many families are hesitant to get help from an attorney because the thought of pursuing litigation is overwhelming, it may be the only way to hold those responsible for your child’s injuries accountable for their negligence or misconduct. Your family should be compensated for your child’s damages, and you can help them get the justice they deserve.
Damages Available After a New York School Injury
Children who are critically injured in New York school accidents have the right to be compensated for all of the ways their lives have been affected by their injuries.
When adults suffer personal injuries at the hands of another, they are quick to seek restitution for their financial losses. But since children do not typically earn a living, you may not be aware of the various losses that they have the right to recover. Some of the different damages that your child could be awarded as part of their school injury claim in New York include:
- Pain and suffering
- Costs of mental health counseling
- Medical care and equipment costs
- Diminished quality of life
- Emotional distress
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Reputational damage
These are only a few of the possible economic and non-economic damages that are awarded in personal injury claims. Your attorney can help you determine how much your child could be awarded in your case.
Can I sue a private school for my child’s injuries?
New York liability law allows you to seek compensation from virtually any liable party, including private schools. The key is being able to prove that the private school didn’t take reasonable steps to prevent your child’s injury.
Can I sue a public school for my child’s injuries?
Public schools can be defendants in injury claims and trials, depending on the situation. Filing a claim against a public school could have a very brief statute of limitations, so don’t wait to talk to a New York school injury lawyer. You might also be required to file a report to the school district soon after the accident before a court will even consider hearing an injury claim.
What proof do I need when taking legal action against a school?
Ideally, your school injury claim will be established on tangible proof of negligence or wrongdoing on the school’s behalf. For example, school records that show lax safety standards, photographs or videos of the accident, and even testimonies from fellow students can all be helpful when building the claim.
When is a school not liable for my child’s injury?
A school could avoid liability for a child’s injury if the injury was unpreventable or caused by no negligence of the school. For example, if a child is dared by their friend to jump down a flight of stairs and suffers an injury, then the school would likely have no liability in that situation. Even with plenty of staff around, the school could make the argument that there was no time to stop the student from participating in the dare which the student themselves should have realized would likely cause an injury.
Are there limits to how much compensation I can receive in a school injury claim?
There are typically no strict limits to how much compensation a school injury plaintiff can receive through a successful claim. New York does not impose a limit on the damages for pain and suffering, either.
What if someone other than the school caused my child’s injury?
A school can still be liable for damages if a student suffers an injury caused by a third party, like another student. What’s important is whether or not the school could have intervened to protect the injured student, or reasonably should have known that an injury or bullying incident could occur but did nothing to stop it.
What if my child was in a school bus accident?
You can file an injury claim against the school district if your child was injured in an accident caused by a school bus. Like any other auto accident case, you should prepare tangible evidence that the school bus operator’s negligence caused the crash. If that isn’t the case, then you might have to file a claim against another involved party like a motorist who crashed into the school bus.
Who pays for medical treatment if a kid is hurt while at school?
If a child needs medical treatment after a school injury, the child will be taken to a designated medical center, which should have been included in administrative paperwork given to the parent at the start of the year or semester. The medical center will apply treatments as necessary. It is most likely that the medical center will bill the child’s medical insurance provider. If you think the school should have been liable for those bills, then you will need to take it up with the school district, which could lead to a lawsuit.
What if I signed an injury waiver?
Some schools make parents sign waivers that explain that the school can’t be held liable for any injuries suffered by their children while attending class there. Although such waivers can be legally strong, they are rarely completely unmovable. You should at least speak with our New York school injury attorneys and let us review this waiver. It might be possible that you can still file a claim due to gaps in the waiver, or if the waiver is unreasonably restrictive.
What if my child is hurt before or after school hours?
When a child is injured before or after school hours, the school could still be liable if its staff still reasonably had an obligation to watch over and protect that child from harm.
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