A head injury at any age can have serious long-term consequences, and in children it can be particularly dangerous because their brain has not reached full growth. Even a seemingly minor head injury could result in critical neurological problems that could potentially persist throughout their life.
A child could sustain head injuries through a variety of ways including falls during trips or organised events, road accidents as a passenger or pedestrian, as a result of a sporting injury and others. If the injury was a result of someone else’s negligence or because proper safety measures were not put in place, your child may be entitled to child head injury compensation. However, even before you seek legal advice, it is extremely important to first seek appropriate medical attention.
Seek Medical Attention First
When a child suffers a skull or brain injury, it could result in a lifetime of intellectual, physical, emotional and social challenges. Sometimes, the full consequences may not be immediately apparent. The full extent of a child’s head injury could take several years to become clear, depending upon their age and the stage of development when the injury was sustained. This is why, irrespective of how mild or how severe the head injury appears, it is crucial to ensure that your child receives the best medical treatment possible and as soon as possible.
Note: It may seem trivial to be thinking about money at a time like this but in order to get fair compensation for your child it is important to remember to retain all receipts pertaining to the medical treatment. This includes any doctor’s fees, hospital charges, cost of medication and cost of travel. Loss of potential income for the parent staying at home as caregiver is also a factor that you should make note of during this time.
Do Not Let Thoughts Of Solicitors’ Fees Deter You From Filing A Compensation Claim
Most personal injury solicitors work on a Conditional Fee or No Win No Fee basis if they feel you have a strong case with a high chance of winning compensation. According to this Conditional Fee agreement, you will not have to pay any upfront fees at any point during the litigation. You will have to pay an agreed upon nominal amount only if the case is successful and only after you’ve received the compensation into your account. All other legal fees will be borne by the other party or their insurers.
The Legalities Regarding Filing Compensation Claims For Minors
In the UK, individuals under 18 years of age are considered children and legally, they are not allowed to file a compensation claim. An adult, usually a parent, will have to file the claim on their behalf.
Regardless of how old your child was when the injury occurred, the case must be filed within 3 years after their 18th birthday. While this may seem like a long time, it is always advisable to contact a solicitor and start the proceedings sooner rather than later. This is because it takes time to put all of the information together and put forward a compelling claim.
Also, things like contacting witnesses and remembering details are always easier immediately after the event rather than several months or years down the line.
Child Head Injuries Require Specialist Solicitors
Because it can take more time then usual to establish the long-term impact of a child’s head injury, it is important to look for a solicitor with specialist knowledge and experience in this particular area. An experienced solicitor will take special care when putting together the case so that you receive at least some amount of compensation in the early stages to help you take care of all expenses while the claim is ongoing. Meanwhile, they will also monitor your child’s progress and will talk to their teachers, friends and caregivers about any changes they may have noticed in the child since the time of the injury.
When filing the claim your child head injury specialist solicitor will consider several factors when arriving at the total compensation sought. This includes long term medical care and rehabilitation, educational assistance, special travel consideration, mobility aids and accommodation issues.
Also included in the compensation amount will be the cost of hiring a long term caregiver or potential loss of income of the parent who has had to give up their job to care for the injured child.