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Children's Accidents

Claims by Children

Where a child has been injured as a result of an accident, any claim for compensation has to be brought on the child's behalf by an adult. This would usually be one of the child's parents, or another relative. This person will be called the child's Litigation Friend.

The procedure for a child making a claim for compensation is essentially the same as that of an adult, but there are some special rules, which apply to children. These are:

  • A child can bring a claim for accident compensation and formally start Court proceedings at any time up until their 21st Birthday. An adult would normally have 3 years from the date of the accident to make a claim for accident compensation and start Court proceedings. It is different for children because their parents may decide that they do not wish to bring an accident injury claim, and the child will not be able to make this decision for themselves prior to reaching 18. They therefore have 3 years from their 18th Birthday to decide. This does not mean that an accident claim should not be started as soon as possible, as there is a higher chance of success if such a claim is started shortly after the accident while the evidence is fresh.
  • Any settlement in an accident compensation case involving a child must be approved by the Court. Once a settlement has been agreed, Court proceedings will be started purely to get the Judge's approval of the agreed settlement. It will be necessary for both the child and their representative (Litigation Friend) to attend the hearing with their Solicitor or Barrister. Once a settlement has been approved, the compensation will be invested by the Court on behalf of the child until they reach 18. It is possible in certain circumstances to apply to the Court for some of the money earlier than the child's 18th Birthday, provided the Court is satisfied that the money will be used for the child's benefit, e.g. for education.
If you, or your children have been involved in an accident, phone Victoria Jones direct dial on 0116 212 1039 for free initial advice or complete the form on the right. You don't need to be based in Leicestershire - we successfully manage cases for people from across the UK.
Lawson-West make children's accident claims on a No Win No Fee basis which means Lawson-West have a vested interest in ensuring your child's accident claim is successful.