Houston Child Injury Attorneys
Legal help when your child is hurt or harmed in Texas
When a child suffers injury because of someone else’s negligence, they generally have the same legal rights to recover compensation for those injuries as an adult. However, because minors can’t legally enter into contracts and hire an attorney on their own, they must have a parent or guardian do so on their behalf. These types of cases can be more complex than a typical personal injury claim.
The Kishinevsky Law Firm understands the sensitive nature of child injury claims and wants to help when your child is hurt or harmed. We work to determine the cause of your child’s accident, the severity of their injuries, and who should be held accountable. Our Houston injury attorneys know how to present the true extent of your child’s injuries to a jury in a trial or to the defendant’s lawyers in a settlement negotiation and will advocate for your child as if you are family. We want to help.
Your questions, answered
- What are some examples of children’s injury claims?
- Can I represent my child in a Houston personal injury claim?
- What is a Guardian ad Litem?
- What happens during a Houston child injury court case?
- What happens to my child’s injury settlement?
- How long do I have to file a child injury claim in Houston?
- Is there a child injury attorney near me?
What are some examples of children’s injury claims?
If you know a child, you know kids can get hurt in an endless variety of ways. It’s always terrible when your child suffers harm, but even worse when they’re hurt due to the negligence or carelessness of another. Children can experience serious and life-threatening injuries from things like:
- Car accidents. According to the CDC, 608 children lost their lives and over 91,000 were injured in car accidents in 2019. More, over 38% of children who weren’t wearing seat belts or restraints died from their injuries. Children can also suffer serious injuries in school bus accidents.
- Defective products and toys. Companies owe consumers a duty of care to design, manufacture, and sell products that are safe to use, wear, and eat. This is especially important for children’s products. Things like defective cribs, rockers, toys with choking hazards, and more can cause infants and children great harm.
- Dangerous property. Children tend to get into places where they don’t belong. Under the theory of attractive nuisance, owners must ensure dangerous features on their property are inaccessible to minors, even when they’re trespassing. These objects can include pools, trampolines, hot tubs, man-made ponds, and old appliances.
Our attorneys work to find out how your child’s injury happened, who caused the accident that led to their injuries, and what party or parties should be held responsible. We understand you want justice and help for your family, and we’re here to help.
Can I represent my child in a Houston personal injury claim?
Yes. A minor’s parents and guardians have the authority to represent them in legal proceedings. In cases of minors without guardians, Texas Rule of Civil Procedure 44 allows a minor to petition to be represented by a “next friend.” Our attorneys can explain more about this in a free consultation.
What is a Guardian ad Litem?
When a minor is represented by a guardian or next friend, Texas Rule of Civil Procedure 173 allows the court to appoint a guardian ad litem. A guardian ad litem is an advisor to the court. The main function of a guardian ad litem is to make sure there is no conflict of interest between a next friend or legal guardian and the party they represent.
One example of this would be when a personal injury settlement is awarded to both a parent and a minor child. The court would likely appoint a guardian ad litem to ensure the financial award is allocated fairly between both parties, and that the parent is not taking advantage of the situation to take a bigger portion to which they are actually entitled.
What happens during a Houston child injury court case?
With child injury cases, our attorneys – and the court – ensure that your child is represented and treated fairly throughout the entire process. When negotiating a settlement on your child’s behalf, the court will hold a hearing to consider all relevant evidence before giving its approval. They do this to protect your child’s interests and ensure any settlements or compensation are fair. Generally, the court will want to make sure that:
- The total settlement amount is appropriate in light of the nature and severity of the injuries and damages the minor has suffered.
- The minor has received appropriate medical evaluation and care for his injuries to prevent the possibility that there are other undiscovered injuries from the accident that are not factored into the settlement.
- The distribution of the settlement between the minor and his guardian or next friend is fair to the minor.
- The attorney is not charging an excessive fee for representing the minor.
The Houston attorneys at Kishinevsky Law Firm are focused on what is best for you and your child, including what kinds of financial compensation they will need to live their best possible life moving forward.
What happens to my child’s injury settlement?
For smaller settlement amounts, the money is deposited into the registry of the court, where it’s invested along with other registry funds in specific low-risk investments specified by Texas law. When they turn 18, the minor can access the money from the court registry.
For larger settlements, our attorneys and the guardian ad litem can work with our clients to agree upon a low-risk annuity or other appropriate investment vehicle to accrue additional money for the minor until they turn eighteen.
Keep in mind, a minor’s settlement funds are never given to a parent, legal guardian, or next friend to manage directly. This is to avoid the potential issues that could arise once the case is closed, and the court and the guardian ad litem are no longer involved to prevent any possible conflicts of interest.
How long do I have to file a child injury claim in Houston?
Here in Texas, the general deadline to file a personal injury lawsuit in Texas is two years from the date of the incident causing the injury.
However, this is different if the injured party is a minor. if the injured person is under the age of 18 at the time of the injury, the deadline to file a lawsuit for the injury is “tolled” and does not begin to run until the person turns 18, making the deadline to file a lawsuit two years from the injured person’s 18th birthday.
Deadlines for claims involving adults and children can be complex, as parents and family members must pay out for medical expenses for these injuries, meaning these are usually considered claims of the parents and subject to the “regular” two year deadline which is not tolled. Depending on your situation, you may have to work with several statutes of limitation. Please don’t hesitate to contact our Houston attorneys for guidance.
Is there a child injury attorney near me?
The Kishinevsky Law firm is located at 6363 Richmond Ave, Suite 207 in Houston. We have plenty of parking, and there’s also a bus stop right in front of our building. If you are too injured or disabled to come to us, we can come to your home, hospital, rehabilitation center, or meet with you via telephone or Zoom. We’re here for you.
Compassionate Houston child injury attorneys
If your child has suffered an injury because of someone else’s negligence, contact the Houston attorneys at the Kishinevsky Law Firm today to discuss your legal options. We’re happy to explain your child’s rights, and what we can do to help you secure the compensation to which you’re entitled. Our consultations are always free. To talk to a member of our legal team, call 832-529-1111 or fill out our contact form.