What To Do If Your Child Is Hit By A Car: Step-By-Step
If your child was struck by a motor vehicle in Texas, the actions you take immediately following the accident are important to protect your child’s health and right to recover legal compensation against the negligent motorist. In this article, our legal professions will discuss the steps you need to take after the car accident, which includes a list of important things to be done at the scene of the accident.
Here are steps to follow after your child is hit by a car:
Contact An Experienced Child Accident Lawyer
Step 1: Check on Your Child
Look for Injuries. The most important step is to check on your child’s health and safety. If your child is unconscious or appears to be seriously injured, do not remove them from their position as this might increase any injuries. Instead, make sure your child is stabilized and wait for ambulatory assistance before moving them.
Child pedestrian victims often suffer severe injuries when hit by cars. Common injuries that children suffer include, shoulder injuries, scarring and disfigurement, paralysis, traumatic brain injuries, crush injuries, broken bones, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Step 2: Contact Local Law Enforcement
Call 911 as soon as possible and wait for assistance. Even if you determine that your child did not experience serious injuries. Don’t delay. You need the responding police officer of sheriff to complete a traffic crash report. Do not allow anyone at the scene of the accident talk you out of reporting the accident to the police. Crash reports typically document any physical evidence (like tire marks) at the scene of an accident and any witness statements. The report will list what traffic citations, if any, an officer issued and maybe even the officer's opinion about who caused the accident. In other words, police reports are powerful evidence that can help you speed up the insurance claims process or win your lawsuit in court.
Not reporting the crash to authorities can cause issues with your accident claim in the future. For example, there are now some insurance policies that won’t provide coverage if the authorities aren’t contacted within a certain amount of time.
Step 3: Request Emergency Medical Assistance
In every child pedestrian accident, it is imperative to seek medical attention to ensure that any serious injuries are addressed. Don’t delay care. Cars weigh thousands of pounds and often cause children to experience life-altering injuries. It’s better to find out the injury is minor than to ignore it and discover it would have been easier to treat the injury had your child been treated earlier.
Keep track of everything the doctors say. Save medical bills, paperwork relating to at-home care instructions, the diagnosis, and how long you and/or your child will need to miss work and school. If your child needs you home for a week, you’re going to miss a week of work, and that can be a financial strain.
Beyond the initial emergency room or hospital stay, there may be additional ongoing costs down the road that are unforeseen when filing a claim for compensation. It is important to know your rights for obtaining recompense to ensure the long-term medical care to maintain your child's well-being.
Generally, children that are involved in motor vehicle accidents later visit with their pediatrician
Step 4: Take Pictures Of The Accident Scene
When it is later safe to do so, take pictures of the following details;
The at-fault’s vehicle, and the structural damage it sustained
any tire tread or skid marks
any vehicle parts or debris left of the street
the street signs of where the crash occurred
signs of any weather condition:
Step 5: Collect Witness Information
Talk with the witnesses at the scene. The best place to gather witness information is at the scene where your child was hit by the vehicle. In most cases, people stop to render aid to the child, or are the first to call 911. When you can, write down the witnesses’ name, address, and cell phone numbers, or whatever form of contact information they are willing to give. You don’t need to witness to agree with an ideal recollection of the events, an attorney can later question the person when assessing liability.
Ask the witnesses to speak with the police. You should encourage those who saw the crash happen to speak with the investigating police officers. If liability is later contested, an independent witness can win your case by providing details as to the driver’s actions before hitting your child.
Step 6: Photograph Your Child's Injuries
After obtaining emergency medical treatment, take pictures of your child’s injuries. Photos of his or her injuries will help prove the exact nature and extent of your injuries to insurance companies or, if necessary, to a mediator or jury if the case court to court.
Continue to document the progression of your child's injuries. Being hit by an automobile often causes additional bruising, discoloration, or swelling over the course of the following days, or weeks. These pictures will further evidence the pain and suffering your child experienced due to the unsafe actions of the driver.
Step 7: Contact An Experienced Child Accident Lawyer
Without assistance, navigating a personal injury claim that involves an injured pedestrian can be difficult and confusing, with a single misstep leading to a significantly reduced payout for your child. Consulting with a personal injury attorney that advocates on behalf of injured children ensures that all relevant facts and information with be obtained. The attorney will also deal with law enforcement, help you understand pertinent traffic laws, and more. Additionally, an experienced child accident lawyer is likely familiar with local courts, which can go a long way in expediting the claim process and obtaining a settlement and includes all of the damages your family is entitled to.
What if My Child Is Hit by a Car?
When a car accident involves a child pedestrian, the insurance company of the driver will likely try to blame your child for causing the crash, regardless of the facts at hand. However, determining liability requires looking into how and where the crash occurred. Texas law protects children by placing a heightened duty of care of motorists when the driver should know that children are present. When kids are hit be cars near schools, parks, buses paths, bus stops, playgrounds, or areas marked by signs, drivers are required to maintain safe speeds and assume that children may enter the street.
This safety standard also applies in all residential neighborhoods where children it can be anticipated that children might by playing in the roadway, or an area nearby.
Auto accident claims involving children also similar to cases involving injured adults in that the victim is entitled to adequate compensation for all of the economic and non-economic damages stemming from the collision. Because children and young adults are often smaller in statute, the physical injuries caused when being hit by a passenger car or truck are often traumatic in nature. As a result, a legal professionals in needed to accurately calculate the long-term costs of a child's auto accident injuries.
Your family may be entitled to damages in the form of medical expenses, surgical procedures, expenses for psychological or psychiatrics care, along with reimbursement of medications, medical supplies, aid devices, permanent disfigurement, and much more. As a parent, the costs you and your family incur in relation to your child's medical condition should also be accounted within the final settlement or award.
Contact Child Injury Lawyer Niles Sneed
If your child was hit by a car in Texas, you should speak with attorney Niles Sneed. Niles is an experienced child injury lawyer and regularly holds negligent drivers responsible for the injuries they cause to child pedestrians. To ensure your child receives proper compensation to provide coverage for care and expenses related to the crash, call attorney Niles Sneed today. His team of personal injury attorneys will investigate the accident, determine liability, assist you throughout the legal process.