Articles Posted in Injuries to Children

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The horrific events of last month at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Broward County left 17 people killed and dozens of people wounded. It also left the community, the state and the nation reeling, once again trying to make sense of the whys and the hows and who should be held responsible. Most notably, this has sparked another heated debate over access to guns and Second Amendment rights. However, it’s also an important time to examine what duty of care schools, law enforcement officials and other government entities have in keeping students safe, and who should be held accountable when those measures fail or aren’t enough. school injury lawyer

The Miami Herald recently reported that one 15-year-old student, shot five times in both legs, intends to sue Broward County and seek monetary damages to help cover the cost of his long-time recovery. The notice of intent to file a lawsuit names several entities, including the Broward County Public Schools, the Broward County Sheriff’s Office and the school resource officer who was on duty that day. In a briefly outlined statement, his attorney indicated actions by these entities and individuals failed to protect students (and this student in particular) from life-threatening harm, and further were unreasonable, callous and negligent. He asserted the defendants’ actions/ inaction were the proximate cause of plaintiff’s serious and lasting injuries.

Now, we must pause here for a moment to explain because it is a seemingly foreign concept that someone other than the person firing the shots could be legally responsible for the attack. Within the criminal justice system, absent any evidence of collusion or conspiracy, that is probably true. However, within the civil justice system we are looking at anybody who owed a duty of care to the person who was hurt, whether those duties were breached and whether those breaches allowed the perpetrator the access and opportunity to carry out his plots.  Continue reading →

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The sovereign immunity doctrine in Florida bars lawsuits in state court against a state government, as well as its agencies and subdivision, absent governmental consent. Although proponents of this theory say it allows for governmental discretion by allowing officials to engage in flexible decision-making without risk of liability and protects public funds, opponents say it fails to discourage wrong-doing and leaves injured parties with no viable remedy. injury attorney

Florida’s waiver of sovereign immunity is outlined in F.S. 768.28, a lengthy and complex statute that allows for various stipulations on suing the government or government employees for negligence. Even if you win, your damage award will be capped at $200,000 a person and $300,000 total per claim (no matter how many claimants), unless the state legislature passes a bill that allows for a higher amount in any given case. This doesn’t mean it’s never worthwhile to pursue compensation from a government agency or worker if you’re injured owing to their negligence, but it’s important to understand there will be a number of challenges, which is why hiring an experienced Orlando injury attorney is so critical.

A recent case considered by the Georgia Supreme Court considered a wrongful death claim involving the tragic death of a student engaged in horseplay in an unsupervised classroom. His parents alleged it was the result of negligence in whole or in part of the teacher who left the room. However, the teacher was a governmental employee, and as such, the question of official immunity was raised.  Continue reading →

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A 14-year-old was recently injured in a Florida amusement park accident when she was reportedly thrown from a ride while it was in motion, eventually landing on the metal walkway that surrounded the ride. The Tallahassee Democrat reported the ride moves in a circular loop, but does not leave the ground, operating something like a fast carousel. The high school freshman later said she felt her feet start to slip and she was unable to hold on.injury lawyer

The girl’s mother said her daughter had not been engaging in horseplay or flouting the rules in a manner that would have resulted in her being thrown from the ride. She said she shouted at the ride operator to halt the machine, but the music was too loud to grab his attention. The girl was initially unconscious and was later transported to the hospital with a broken nose and a large gash on her forehead requiring stitches.

The ride was shut down for the rest of the evening and into the following morning, but was later cleared for re-opening, following an inspection by the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ ride inspection unit. The unit reportedly ascertained there was no malfunction of the machine. Specifically, it appeared the lap restraints were working properly and the speed was within the limits of the manufacturer’s recommendations.  Continue reading →

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For many kids, Halloween – and of course, trick-or-treat – is highly anticipated and the source of many magical childhood memories. However, there are also a host of frightening dangers lurking on Halloween that have nothing to do with ghosts or goblins. injury lawyer

Attorneys for child injury victims in Orlando are committed to helping raise awareness of some of the most common child Halloween injuries, in the hopes families will face fewer emergency room trips this year.

From traffic safety to pumpkin carving to candle hazards, the hazards are seemingly endless.

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In a lawsuit against a fatal amusement park accident during a school outing that claimed the life of a child, defendant amusement park cannot seek indemnification from the school. However, according to a recent New Jersey Supreme Court opinion, defendant will be allowed to seek a verdict that allocates fault to the school, meaning it plaintiffs could ultimately receive less. wrongful death attorney

The issue in Jones v. Morey’s Pier was that defendant amusement park failed to give proper notice of claim to the school under the state’s Tort Claims Act. Still, the park will be allowed to present evidence during the pending trial against it that the school was negligent and that this negligence was a proximate cause of the girl’s death. If the jury finds credible evidence of this, it can allocate a percentage of fault to the school, which would reduce the park’s overall liability and the amount it would have to pay the child’s parents.

This question of common-law indemnification against a public entity was one of first impression in New Jersey, and although it has no direct bearing on the court process in Florida, courts often look to the decisions of their sister courts in reaching conclusions about similar matters.  Continue reading →

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A tiny tick in a mountainous region of China set off a chain of events leading to a $40 million verdict against a Connecticut school – a verdict recently affirmed by the Connecticut Supreme Court.child injury lawyer

Although the court’s ruling doesn’t have a direct impact on case law in Florida, state high courts often look to their sister courts in considering rulings that may set precedent. The case was certified to the state supreme court from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, which sought answers as to whether public policy supports imposing a duty on a school to warn about or protect against the risk of a serious insect-borne disease in organizing an abroad trip. The court was also asked whether damages in the amount of $41.5 million warranted a remittitur (reduction). The court answered yes to the first and no to the second.

The court’s ruling underscored that schools do have an affirmative duty to protect children in their care. The ruling doesn’t definitively settle the case, the outcome of which is expected to play a role in how – or whether – schools provide such travel opportunities in the future. Continue reading →

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Serious injuries to two young girls, as well as an adult woman, who fell 35 feet from a Ferris wheel at a county fair have filed lawsuits against the fair, as well as the ride’s operators, owners and manufacturers.amusement park injury lawyer

The federal lawsuits, filed in federal court in the Eastern District of Tennessee allege the named defendants – as well as unnamed defendants who performed maintenance on the ride – were negligent, causing them to suffer serious personal injuries. The lawsuit seeks monetary damages in an unspecified amount. Two sisters, ages 6 and 10, as well as another girl, not identified in the lawsuit, fell from the ride when the gondola  in which they were seated suddenly overturned. Another woman on the ride also fell when the same thing occurred in her gondola. The 10-year-old suffered a broken arm while the 6-year-old suffered a traumatic brain injury. The 16-year-old, who is not a plaintiff, was not seriously injured. The unrelated woman, meanwhile, suffered a sprained left arm and shoulder.

The youngest girl, who was the most seriously injured, was hospitalized for extensive injuries, and continues to undergo physical therapy, speech therapy and occupational therapy, and continues to have ongoing treatment from neurologists. The 10-year-old has suffered severe emotional distress, while the younger girl continues to struggle with short-term memory loss, nightmares and is hypersensitive to low-level risks, such as being trapped in an elevator. Continue reading →

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A child under three is injured every eight minutes in the U.S. as a result of a product-related accident. Most of these involve products like:

  • Cribs
  • Walkers
  • Strollers
  • Carriersbaby face

In many cases, the child suffers a concussion or other type of head injury.

This information was derived from a new extensive study, published in the journal Pediatrics, conducted by researchers at the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Ohio. This all breaks down to about 66,000 serious child injuries a year that require treatment at a hospital emergency department. What’s especially troubling about the study, which analyzed data over the course of 20 years, is that baby and toddler product injuries were on a downward trend for the first several years, but have since been climbing again.  Continue reading →

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Facial trauma, which is also formally referred to as maxillofacial trauma, is any type of physical trauma to one’s face. It can involve soft tissue injuries, like lacerations, burns or fractures, as well as trauma such as eye injuries. child

Particularly when it comes to children, we know many of these injuries are preventable. They are often caused by:

  • Defective products (particularly infant and toddler items);
  • Sports-related injuries;
  • Car accidents.

April is National Facial Protection Month, according to the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons. The month was designated for the spring because it’s often the time at which children across the country start to become increasingly active in outdoor activities.  Continue reading →

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Parents of an Oklahoma boy have filed a personal injury lawsuit on behalf of their young son, alleging he suffered a brain injury while at day care.rocking horse

Of course, our injury lawyers know that kids are prone to getting hurt. They can be clumsy. They don’t always pay close attention to where they are walking or climbing or running. They often fail to appreciate the danger in every day situations. But that’s all common knowledge, and that’s precisely why a company running a daycare has the responsibility to keep a watchful eye. They have a duty to make sure their staffers are fully vetted, properly trained and carefully watched. They have a responsibility to make sure they hire enough staffers in ratio to the number of children in their care and that appropriate action is taken to prevent accidents, injuries and illnesses that are foreseeable.

Plaintiffs in these cases need to show that the child’s injuries were the result of negligence, which means the daycare facility and/ or staffers failed to exercise due care to prevent a foreseeable injury. Accidents that involve falls from playground equipment, illnesses caused by unsanitary conditions or slipping on some substance that wasn’t quickly cleaned – these are all incidents that were probably foreseeable. Similarly, a child injured by a daycare worker with a violent criminal background or a lack of basic experience would also be a foreseeable injury. Continue reading →

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