If your child gets hurt in a car accident, it’s crucial to act fast and competent. First, ensure their immediate safety and health needs are met. Next, gather all necessary information about the accident. Finally, seek legal advice to understand your rights and options. At Good Guys Injury Law, we know that car accidents can lead to severe injuries. You need to make sure you get your child’s injuries checked out by a medical professional as quickly as possible.
Then, if you have to go to the emergency room because your child was injured in a car accident by a negligent driver, count on us to help you. We have represented families with children who have suffered traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injuries, and more. We would be honored to represent you as well.
Learn more about what to do in a severe accident involving a minor child below. Then, contact us to schedule a free case consultation.
Table of Contents
Importance of Immediate Action for the Child’s Well-Being in a Car Accident
When your child is involved in a car accident, immediate action is crucial for their well-being. A quick response can prevent further injuries (including worsening a traumatic brain injury) and ensure your child gets the care they need. It’s essential to stay calm and focused despite the stress of the situation. Your focus needs to be on your child’s recovery and health outcomes.
In the chaotic moments following an accident, your priority should be your child’s safety and health. Check for any injuries and assess their condition carefully. If your child is in distress or has visible injuries, do not hesitate to seek emergency medical help. Your child’s car seat is an essential protective measure, but children can still get hurt.
Assessing the Situation
When you’re at the accident scene, quickly assess the situation. Look for any immediate dangers, like fire or oncoming traffic. Check on your child and other passengers for injuries. If anyone is hurt, call for medical help right away. Stay as calm as possible, as your reaction can influence others, especially your child.
Call for Emergency Medical Assistance
- Dialing Emergency Services: If your child is injured, call 911 immediately. Be sure to see if injuries appear more severe over time. Emergency responders can provide essential care and determine if your child needs to go to the hospital. While you wait for help, try to keep your child calm and comfortable.
- Providing Necessary Information: When you call 911, be ready to give specific details. Tell them your location, the nature of the injuries, and any immediate dangers at the scene. This information helps emergency services respond effectively. Inform the operator if your child has any known medical conditions or allergies.
Ensure Safety at the Accident Scene
- Moving to a Safe Location: If it’s safe to do so, move your child and yourself to a secure area away from traffic. However, if your child is severely injured, avoid moving them unless there’s an immediate danger, like a fire. Your safety and that of your child is paramount.
- Warning Other Drivers: Use hazard lights, road flares, or warning triangles to alert other drivers to the accident. This step is essential to prevent further accidents and ensure the safety of everyone at the scene.
- Collecting Relevant Information (If Safe): Gather information about the accident if your child’s condition allows. Take note of the other driver’s license plate, car model, and contact details. Collecting this information is crucial for insurance claims and potential legal actions.
Seeking Medical Attention
A. Immediate Medical Care: The importance of professional evaluation after a car accident cannot be overstated. Certain injuries might not be immediately apparent, even if your child seems fine. A medical professional can identify these hidden injuries. Early detection is critical to effective treatment.
B. Following Medical Recommendations: After the initial medical evaluation, it’s crucial to follow all treatment plans. This might include medication, physical therapy, or follow-up appointments. Keep a close eye on your child for delayed symptoms, like dizziness or confusion, which could indicate a more severe injury.
After ensuring your child’s safety and health, gathering information about the accident is essential. This includes details about the other vehicle, the accident scene, and any witnesses. Collecting this information is crucial for insurance and legal purposes. It can also help reconstruct the car accident to understand what happened.
Documenting the Accident
- Taking Pictures of the Scene: Use your phone to take pictures of the accident scene. Capture different angles, showing the positions of the cars, any skid marks, and road conditions. These photos can provide valuable evidence for insurance claims or legal actions.
- Collecting Contact Information of Witnesses: Ask for their contact details if there are any witnesses. Witness accounts can be crucial in determining the cause of the accident and establishing liability.
Obtaining Police Report
- Reporting the Accident to Law Enforcement: Always report the accident to the police, even if it seems minor. The police officer will document the crash site and provide an official accident report. This report can be essential for insurance and legal purposes.
- Requesting a Copy of the Police Report: After the police complete their report, request a copy. This document will cover essential details about the crash, which can be critical when dealing with insurance companies or if you decide to take legal action.
When your child is involved in a car accident, understanding the legal aspects is crucial. You need to know your rights and the steps to take to protect your child’s interests.
Consulting With an Attorney
- Understanding Legal Rights: Consult a personal injury lawyer to review your legal rights and options. A lawyer can explain how the law applies to your situation and guide you through seeking compensation.
- Navigating Insurance Claims: Fighting with insurance companies and claims can be complex and confusing. An attorney can help you navigate this process, ensuring you provide all necessary documentation and communicate effectively with insurance companies.
Filing a Personal Injury Claim
- Gathering Evidence: To file a personal injury claim, you must gather evidence supporting your case. This includes medical records, accident photos, witness statements, and the police report. A lawyer can assist you in reviewing and organizing this evidence.
- Statute of Limitations: The statute of limitations refers to the time limit you have to file a lawsuit. This is the deadline by which you must file a lawsuit. In Utah, it is typically four years. Contact us to make sure that your claim gets filed on time.
Motor Vehicle Child Injuries and Symptoms to Watch for After a Car Crash
A. Do Not Minimize Headaches: Don’t ignore your child complaining of headaches after a car crash. Headaches are often a sign of a concussion or other serious injuries. It’s essential to have a medical professional evaluate these symptoms as soon as possible.
B. Back Pain: If your child experiences back pain after an accident, seek medical attention. Back injuries can be severe and may not show immediate symptoms. Back injuries can be expensive, and we can fight for a fair settlement from the insurance company.
C. Abdominal Swelling, Bloating, or Pain: Any signs of abdominal swelling, bloating, or pain in your child after a car accident should be a cause for concern. These symptoms can indicate internal injuries, which require immediate medical attention.
D. Alterations in Physical Function, Personality, or Emotions: Pay close attention to changes in your child’s physical abilities, personality, or emotional state after an accident. Such changes can indicate trauma or other serious issues.
Emotional Support for the Child
A. Recognizing Trauma: Recognizing signs of emotional distress in your child is crucial. Look for changes in behavior, sleep patterns, or appetite. These can be signs of trauma. It’s essential to address these issues promptly by seeking professional counseling.
B. Communicating With the Child: Have age-appropriate discussions with your child about the accident. Provide reassurance and a safe space for them to express their feelings. Open communication can help your child process the incident and aid in their emotional recovery.
Insurance Claims Process
A. Reporting the Accident to Insurance: Notify your insurance company about the accident as soon as possible. Please provide them with all the necessary documentation, including the police report and medical records.
B. Dealing With the Other Party’s Insurance: When communicating with the other party’s insurance, be clear and factual. Do not admit fault or say anything that could be used against you. It’s often best to let your attorney handle these communications to avoid common pitfalls.
A. Understanding Medical Expenses: Coordinate with your health insurance to cover medical expenses. Be aware of potential long-term costs, like ongoing treatment or therapy.
B. Seeking Compensation for Damages: Take a look at all of your expenses. You need to keep track of your medical expenses, property damage, and lost income. Be sure to reach out to us to make sure that your claim is appropriately valued and that you recover the compensation you deserve.
Consider Getting Legal Help After Your Children Are Involved in a Car Accident | Call Our Car Accident Lawyer at Good Guys Injury Law Today!
When your child is involved in a car accident, getting legal help can make a big difference. A skilled motor vehicle crash lawyer can help you protect your child and your family. At Good Guys Injury Law, we understand your challenges and are here to help. We can provide the support and expertise you need during this difficult time.
Don’t try to navigate this complex situation alone. Contact us today for a consultation. We can evaluate your case, advise you on the best course of action, and represent you in dealing with insurance companies. Give us a call to schedule a free consultation today.