Children can be especially vulnerable to mistreatment by those who should be protecting them, and even when no wrongdoing occurs, sometimes accidents happen. If your child was injured while at a daycare facility or in a car accident caused by someone else, you may need to make a claim on their behalf to get compensation.

Keep reading to learn more about how childpersonal injury claims work from a Houston children personal injury lawyer who can help you in your child’s case. 

Who Can File a Personal Injury Lawsuit for a Minor?

When a child under 18 has suffered an injury, they can’t sue or be sued in Texas. But this doesn’t mean you can’t seek justice for your child. In Texas, any adult, including a parent or guardian, can stand in for the child as the “next friend” to pursue the minor’s case.

However, this doesn’t mean the the “next friend” can access the settlement payment in all cases.

How Is My Child’s Personal Injury Compensation Distributed?

If a settlement is awarded to your child, the money is legally theirs because they suffered the injury involved in the suit. Even if the child is close to being of age, the court will determine how the money will be held until the child has turned 18. 

The settlement can be distributed therough a court registry or an insurance policy called an annuity. The “next friend” may be able to provide some input on the court’s decision. A court registry would give the child the full settlement when they turn 18, while an annuity will be distributed in payments after the child becomes an adult.

How Are My Child’s Medical Bills Covered?

In a personal injury case involving children, a parent or guardian may wonder about compensation for medical bills or missed work time resulting from the child’s accident. While it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to access compensation for your own lost wages and income, you can make a claim for coverage for your child’s medical bills. To take that into account, children personal injury cases are separated into two parts: the adult’s claims for financial loss and the child’s claims for other forms of loss, and long-term expenses. 

Can I Access My Child’s Personal Injury Settlement?

Since a child’s personal injury settlement is legally awarded to the child themselves, parents and guardians usually can’t receive these funds. They can petition the court for an early release of the settlement, but that decision is up to the judge. In order to access the funds, you would have to prove that the money is being used in the child’s best interest and not for your own financial gain.

Get Help From Children Personal Injury Attorneys at Lapeze & Johns

Children can be injured from a car accident, medical malpractice, or the purposeful act of another, and they deserve justice just like any adult would. Adults can help children by pursuing a personal injury case in their place.

At Lapeze & Johns, we believe you and your child shouldn’t face this process alone. As children personal injury lawyers, you can trust our experienced team with your child’s case. Fight to get your child’s medical bills covered and compensation for their future by starting with a free consultation appointment with Lapeze & Johns.   

If your child has suffered an injury from an accident or neglectful act of another, contact Lapeze & Johns to seek justice.

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About Keith Lapeze

Keith Lapeze co-founded Lapeze & Johns with the focus of delivering dependable legal services to individuals hurt in accidents caused by negligence. After graduating third in his class from Louisiana State University Law Center, Mr. Lapeze continued his calling through commercial, environmental, and tort litigation where he is admitted to practice in both Texas and Louisiana, the United States Supreme Court, and the Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. Read more about Keith Lapeze here.