When you send your child to school, you want to know that they will be safe and secure. Unfortunately, there is no way to guarantee that. If your child is hurt while under the supervision of the school, who is responsible? Legally speaking, it depends on many factors – including how your child was injured and what type of school they are enrolled in. Keep reading for more details and then reach out to The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 if your child has been injured and you need a free legal consultation.
In the case of intentional acts
This is the rarest option but it does happen: Sometimes children are intentionally injured at school. It may be the case of one child bullying or harassing another child, or a teacher or employee hurting the child. If you know that your child has been physically injured as the result of someone’s intentional act then you may have grounds for a personal injury lawsuit. The lawsuit may be against the person that actually hurt your child or against someone who had the responsibility to prevent the harm and did not do so.
In the case of negligent acts
In its most basic terms, negligence means that a person did not provide reasonable care. In the context of a school, it means that though no one intentionally hurt a child, they did not do what they needed to do to prevent an injury. The reality is that when students are at school, the school is responsible for ensuring a reasonably safe environment. If they do not do that then they may be sued for negligence.
There are many ways this might happen. For example, if a school bus driver drives unsafely or while under the influence of alcohol, if playground equipment is unsafe, if walkways are not cleared, or if the school did not properly prepare for an emergency or natural disaster. Your child’s school administrators have a duty to meet a reasonable standard of care and if they do not do so then you can hold them responsible via a lawsuit.
Not all schools can be sued
As you look to see if a school can even legally be sued, the big question will be whether the school is private or public. If they are private then you can sue them just as you would any other company. On the other hand, if the school is public then they are a government agency. You can still sue them but the rules and policies will be different. For example, in a typical personal injury lawsuit, you would have two years to file but when the suit is against the government that timeframe is reduced to just six months.
If your child has been injured and you believe that someone is at fault, whether due to intentional acts or being negligent, then we urge you to contact The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 for a free legal consultation. We are here to help you ensure that your rights are respected.