If you get hurt by somebody else, you almost always have a right to damages. You do this by filing a personal injury claim. Most of these claims are filed against the defendant’s insurance company. If they don’t have insurance, then you file a lawsuit against them personally.
Usually, the people who get hurt are either adults or small children. In these cases, it’s pretty obvious who will file the claim. Adults can file a claim on their own behalf. Also, parents can file claims for their small children.
The question is – what if you’re a teenager and want to file your own claim? Does Georgia law allow you to do this?
Technically, under Georgia law, minors are not allowed to file a lawsuit. Their claim must be filed by a parent or legal guardian. There are good reasons for this.
Personal Injury Lawyers in Augusta, Georgia Know Why Minors are Protected
Minors are not allowed to file lawsuits in Georgia. This is the case in most states. The law understands that minors simply aren’t able to handle such a thing. They don’t have legal standing to file a claim in court.
The law, however, does offer protection to minors who are injured. Their parents or legal guardian can file a claim on their behalf. In fact, most personal injury cases involving minors are separated into two parts: the damages suffered by the child and the damages suffered by the parent.
When a personal injury lawyer in Augusta files a case on behalf of a minor plaintiff, they will demand the following types of damages:
- Medical bills – Since the parent is responsible for the child’s medical bills, he will be entitled to be reimbursed.
- Lost wages – If the parent missed time from work to care for the child, he can seek compensation for lost wages.
- Pain and suffering – You can demand pain and suffering for both the child and his parents.
- Future Damages for child – If the child ends up permanently disabled or injured, he can be compensated for the loss of future income and normal living.
Your personal injury lawyer will make sure all of this is covered in your complaint.
Your Augusta Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help Settle Your Case
If your child is injured, you may be entitled to a large settlement. Under the law, if the settlement is for more than $15,000, the parent must be put in trust of the funds. They aren’t going to give this much money to a minor. They also fear that he will now be able to manage it properly.
It’s also important that the parents understand who the settlement monies are for. Your attorney can show you how the award breaks down. Whatever money the parent is entitled to he can keep. However, the other money must be placed in trust for the child. The parent isn’t allowed to spend all of that money for his own selfish purposes.
Most people set up a trust for their child. It can be used to pay his future medical bills. It can also be set aside for college expenses. Your personal injury attorney can help you set all of this up.
Your Personal Injury Attorney in Augusta Will Get the Settlement Approved by the Court
When the legal settlement is for a minor, the court must approve any lump sum settlement. This is to ensure that the child’s best interests are protected. There are several reasons for this:
- They want to make sure that the parent or guardian doesn’t accept a quick settlement that won’t benefit the child
- The court wants to ensure that the money will be arranged for the child and not the parent or third party
- Lastly, the court needs to make sure the appropriate trusts are set up
Your attorney will handle this for you. The goal is to make sure that parents aren’t able to take advantage of their child’s legal settlement. Sadly, this happens more than you may imagine.
Call and Schedule a Consultation with an Augusta Personal Injury Lawyer
If your child is injured in a settlement, you need to call an Augusta personal injury lawyer. Your lawyer can review your case and see what it may be worth. He and also give you an idea of how the legal process works.
Let your lawyer answer any questions you may have. The consultation is free and you pay nothing until you settle your case.