Parents typically want to think that their children are safe at school. Indeed, schools do present themselves as focused on student safety in all aspects ranging from a slip-and-fall accident to being involved in a
playground fight with other students. Interaction with other students is actually an important component of going to school, as learning is not always completely about academics. School management officials understand this principle, and they are especially focused in this day and age on student safety. However, injuries do occur, and when the injury is of a more serious nature you may find yourself in a legal situation with the learning institution. In such cases, there will be an experienced legal team working on behalf of the school, so having an experienced North Carolina personal injury lawyer on your side is important when pursuing damages in serious injury situations.
What a Personal Injury Lawyer Can Do
Parents are often limited in what information a school management team will communicate to them. School supervisors are trained in protecting the school system, and information can be crucial to establishing fault and liability for injuries suffered by any student. An attorney can investigate the situation independently, including petitioning the school for specific information regarding how the injury occurred. Children are typically not held responsible when an injury happens, and school management understands this principle well. An attorney can interview witnesses and question school officials even before taking a case to trial, which could well be the outcome in more difficult cases.
There are a number of scenarios that can contribute to causing injury to a child at school. Not only can students be injured in bus accidents on the way to class or suffer injury due to interaction with other students, but they can also be injured in other ways.
This includes cases of:
- Food poisoning
- Sports injuries
- Slip and fall injury
- Exposure to toxins
Just as in all other personal injury claims, the school must have a reasonable duty of care to the injured student at the time of the injury. This is obvious when injuries occur during school hours, but extracurricular activities can be included as well. After establishing the duty of care, the school management must have failed in the duty in some manner. This is typically established by a personal injury lawyer representing the case in court. Schools rarely admit fault, and lawsuits are common when pursuing damages from a school system because the state is effectively the defendant in most instances.
There are specific damages that can be claimed when children are injured at school. Injury attorneys understand these potential damages that can include but are not limited to financial recovery for all medical bills and rehabilitation therapy costs. However, the most important aspect of the claim will always be general damages for ongoing problems associated with the injury. This also includes mental anguish for pain and suffering. These damages can also include future mental health therapy along with any physical problems. School systems typically want to avoid these damages, especially when they are punitive, and insurance providers will also provide legal defense for the case in many situations in an attempt to reduce total claim payouts.
It is vital for all school systems to ensure safety for students who are required to attend school of some type unless authorized for homeschooling. This puts a significant responsibility on the schools and the state for the most part, both of which will want to avoid a claim at all costs. It is always necessary to retain legal counsel when your child is injured at school because being properly compensated is no easy task. Always get an experienced North Carolina injury attorney who knows how to keep the authorities honest and broker a full damage settlement.