While the California school system does a great job of providing safe education for our children, accidents can still happen.
Parents should be aware of the conditions at their child’s school and take note of potential problems and hazards, some of which are discussed below.
If you’re concerned about an actual or potential safety problem at your child’s school, speak with an Orange County personal injury lawyer.
Can You Sue a School if Your Child Gets Hurt?
School administrators, teachers, and other staff have a legal duty of care so long as children are on their property.
A parent can sue a school if their child is physically injured on school grounds or while participating in school-sponsored activities.
Lawsuits can happen in relation to:
- Negligent child supervision
- Bullying or physical assault
- Excessive or unacceptable punishments
- Unsafe facilities or equipment
Who is Responsible if a Child Gets Hurt at School?
It is the school’s job to keep children safe and protected from danger, even while undertaking activities that are technically off grounds. For instance, extracurricular activities or school trips that are offsite but school-related are still the school’s responsibility.
If your child is injured at school, you may be able to sue the school to recover financial compensation for damages, up to and including wrongful death.
Potential Safety Issues at School
Falls, broken bones and head injuries are just a few things that can happen when school equipment and grounds are not maintained.
Unsafe Buildings, Equipment, and/or Grounds
Cracks in the flooring or slippery floors can cause slip and fall accidents. Damaged chairs and desks can fall apart. Physical education using worn, defective, or improperly maintained sports equipment and gear can be dangerous to a child. Holes on the school grounds can lead to a twisted ankle.
The maintenance of their buildings and campus grounds is the responsibility of school administrators. You have cause to sue for damages if your child is injured for poor upkeep of school facilities and equipment.
Assault and Bullying
Bullied and physically assaulted children find it very hard to focus on their studies and eventually develop the fear of going to school. With enough adults constantly supervising student activities and dealing with fights through detention or time-outs, bullying can be kept at a minimum. Parents of the bully can also be sued for medical damages.
The state of California requires teachers and school authorities to report situations that can endanger their students, such as threats from other students or, in some cases, a teacher.
Guns and Deadly Weapons
Teachers and students should know what safety measures to take in the event of a shooting or incidents where other deadly weapons are involved. Schools should perform regular lockdown drills and other life-saving techniques to help prevent injuries or loss of life
The school is held responsible if a child suffers from food poisoning after eating cafeteria food. If the tainted food was supplied by an outside vendor, the responsible party can be charged with a product liability issue.
Lack of Child Supervision
Schools often suffer from a shortage of teachers. When a student gets hurt due to negligence or lack of child supervision, the liability falls on the school.
Do You Have a Child Injury Claim? Call an Experienced Attorney
Child injuries are devastating, and facing a school with a lawsuit can be extremely complicated.
The cost of your injured child’s medical treatment and physical therapy may be expensive and ongoing.
We at Barrios & Machado can help recover the expenses you’ve incurred as a result of your child’s injury.
Do you need to file a lawsuit against a school? Call our office today at (714) 515-9696 or contact us online for a free consultation.