Injuries to Minors

Fairfax Injury Lawyer Brien Roche Addresses Injuries to Minors

Brien Roche

Injuries to minors frequently involve what is called an “attractive nuisance”. You have all probably heard the term. It is a concept of negligence that is recognized in many states. An attractive nuisance is an object which by it very location and configuration is attractive and also dangerous to children according to personal injury lawyer Brien Roche. If the owner of that object allows it to remain accessible to children knowing that it will attract them and knowing that they will be injured if they come in contact with it, then that may be a basis for a negligence claim against the owner of that object.

Minors Have Favored Legal Status In Injury Cases

Many tort claims that are brought involve children. Children, in general, are given a favored status in the law meaning that they have special protection. This is true likewise in regards to tort claims. For instance, in regards to negligence claims, children under 7 years of age generally are legally incapable of committing any act of negligence. Children between 7 and 14 are generally presumed to be incapable of committing negligence although that presumption can be rebutted with the presentation of evidence showing that the child is, in fact, capable of committing a negligent act because of his intelligence level, experience level and other factors that may bear on that.

In Injury to Minors Presenting Damages Can Be Tricky

In terms of presenting the damages suffered by a child there are several important considerations:

  • Frequently parents and treating physician maintain an almost false sense of optimism.  That false sense of optimism needs to be given a dose of reality as to what really can be expected of this child.
  • What this child is going through needs to be presented graphically so that everybody can feel what it is like to be this child.  If this child is 12 years old and is now in a situation where he has no bladder control and needs frequent diaper changes that needs to be presented.  Pictures in regards to children literally do speak 10,000 words.  The use of pictures and videos to show the child before the injury and after the injury can be critical in terms of getting the jury to sympathize with the changes that have taken place in this child as a result of the injury.  To fully appreciate those changes the lawyer needs to get to know the child.  That doesn’t mean just getting to know the child a month before trial but getting to know the child literally from day one in terms of how that child interacts with the family, interacts with neighbors, interacts at school and interacts with the health care providers.  All of that is critical in order to give the attorney the foundation upon which to build a damages case.
  • The life care plan for the child needs to be fully developed.  This child may be in need of life long care even beyond the life expectancy of the parents.  The full scope of that plan needs to be developed and presented and fully justified.
  • Consider the appointment of a guardian.  The appointment of a guardian to manage the child’s finances takes this issue away from the parent’s control and insulates them from any accusations of seeking to somehow benefit from the child’s injury.
  • Scientific data is beginning to show that we all think metaphorically.  A metaphor is simply a comparison of terms or concepts without use of the word “like”.  With use of the word “like” it becomes a simile.  The essence of a metaphor is being able to understand one thing in terms of another.  It’s similar to an analogy.  Developing those metaphors is critical in terms of getting the jury to understand what this child has experienced.

Traumatic brain injuries to minors traditionally have been thought of as a condition that is likely to resolve given the overall resiliency of a child or infant.  This principle was originally announced by neurologist Margaret Kennard in the 1930s,reports personal injury attorney Brien Roche.  After publishing her initial findings Dr. Kennard went on to conduct further research and retreated from those earlier findings to some extent. More recent research indicates that children, in fact, may be more vulnerable to long term traumatic brain injury than are adults. Exactly how vulnerable is a function of age, severity of injury and any other prior or concurring injuries or illnesses experienced by the child.  The younger the child is the more disabling the injury frequently is.

In Traumatic Brain Injuries to Minors Immediate Treatment Critical

What is critical is that as soon as possible after the injury the child must undergo rigorous rehabilitation consisting of physical therapy, continuation of the daily routine, re-establishing any knowledge base that may have been lost and reintegration into home, school and community life as soon as appropriate. If those things are undertaken as quickly as possible, then the overall prognosis for recovery is better.

More Information On Traumatic Brain Injuries to Minors

For more information about traumatic brain injuries to minors and brain injury in general, peruse our supporting content. Brien Roche is a well respected Fairfax, Va. personal injury attorney serving the litigation needs of Northern Virginia and Washington D.C. area clients for 35 years.

If a child of yours has suffered an injury, contact us. at the office of personal injury attorney Brien Roche.

For more information on minors see the pages on Wikipedia.

Brien Roche is a personal injury attorney with more than 35 years experience in injuries to minors, personal injury, negligence and product and premises liability cases. If your child has been injured, contact us today.

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Injuries to Minors

Contact Us For A Free Consultation

Contact Us For A Free Consultation