School Accident & Child Injury Solicitors
If your child has been injured in an accident at school, you may be able to claim compensation.
Your child’s school has a legal responsibility to protect your child from harm; if your child has been injured in an accident at school, it may be possible to trace your child's accident back to the negligent actions of a member of staff and make a claim. Claims against schools and their staff are only successful if it can be clearly proven that the injuries sustained by the victim were directly caused by the school’s negligence.
Claims for injuries on school premises can also be made by visitors to the school.
Contact our expert team of friendly solicitors today to discuss your case.
Causes of Accidents
- Accidents in schools are common, and not all can be avoided. Schools are expected to do their utmost to prevent accidents from happening by conducting risk assessments and implementing steps to protect children from potential hazards. Common causes of accidents in school include:
- Slips and trips, many of which are caused by wet floors and items such as wires and bag
- Burns, such as those sustained in science classes
- Falls from play equipment
- Food poisoning caused by food not being prepared or stored properly on school premises
Accidents on School Trips
Not all accidents occur on school premises; accidents that occur on school trips have the potential to cause severe injuries to students and are often the result of health and safety procedures not being properly followed. Schools have a legal responsibility to carry out risk assessments and clearly identify and mitigate any hazards that could affect their pupils during school trips. If a child is injured during a trip, the school may be found liable for the accident if it is deemed that staff did not do enough to prevent the accident from occurring. This could involve not completing risk assessments or not having enough staff present to watch the children.
Road Traffic Accidents
The roads outside the UK’s schools are some of the most dangerous in the countries. Roads close to schools are extremely busy and around 1,00 children are injured every month in accidents outside schools. If your child has been injured in a road traffic accident, you may be able to bring a case against your child’s school if it was their fault that your child was harmed. Most schools have a policy requiring parents and/or guardians to pick their children up from the school gates; if your child was allowed to leave the school without a guardian being present and was subsequently injured, you will be able to make a claim against the school.
If it isn’t possible to make a claim against the school, it is highly likely that you will be able to make a claim against the driver of the vehicle that struck your child. Contact our team to discuss your case further.
Who Can Make a Claim?
If you are the parent of a child who has been injured in a school accident, you have the right to act as your child’s litigation friend and make a claim on your child’s behalf. Children aren’t allowed to claim compensation until they reach 18 years of age. As your child’s litigation friend, you will be able to bring the claim to the court’s attention earlier and will be responsible for handling the claim on your child’s behalf and making any decisions that need to be made. If your claim is successful, the money that is awarded to your child will remain in a court appointed bank account until your child turns 18.
If you’re are an adult who has been injured during a visit to school (for example, during a parent’s evening or other event. As with all personal injury claims, you will have three years from the date of
the accident to make a claim. Children whose parents haven’t already claimed on their behalf have three years from the age of 18 to make a claim, regardless of when the accident happened.
Who is the Claim Brought Against?
All school claims are brought against the school’s operators. For nurseries and private schools, this will be the owner of the nursery or school; for state schools, the operator is likely to be the local authority.
Will the School be Found Liable?
Unlike adults, children can’t be expected to protect themselves from harm; as such, nurseries and schools are required to take extra precautions to protect their students from harm. Young children are particularly vulnerable and are most likely to be involved in accidents.
It is understood that schools can’t prevent all accidents from happening, but they must take reasonable steps to avoid accidents. Such steps typically involve conducting risk assessments, identifying and mitigating hazards and ensuring staff are appropriately trained to look after children. Our solicitors will investigate your claim thoroughly and help you throughout your case.
How Much Compensation?
Compensation amounts for school accidents vary considerably but recent claims have reached into the thousands. To get a better idea of how much compensation you could receive, speak to a member of our team today.