When you get in a car accident, it’s a traumatic event no matter what the circumstances are; however, if you’re in a car crash with your children, the fear level is heightened significantly. Even when children are in the backseat of the car, they have a higher risk of injury because their bodies are weaker than adults. Over 100,000 children under the age of twelve are injured in car wrecks each year.
Personal injury cases are treated differently in court when children are involved. In the state of Washington, for instance, a child’s best interest is always put first and the plaintiff has a second opportunity to speak on behalf of any child involved.
A Spokane auto accident lawyer explains that, “Children can experience broken bones, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and whiplash from car accidents just like adults do. They deserve the same medical and legal treatment after a crash.”
Steps to Take After the Accident
When an accident takes place, the first thing you’ll need to do is assess both your child’s injuries and your own injuries and call 911. Once help is on the way, you can accommodate your child’s needs at the moment and make sure you’re both okay, if you’re physically able to do so. Once you’ve both received medical help and begun the recovery process, you can proceed to file a settlement claim.
Injuries a Child May Experience After a Car Wreck
A car wreck is a particularly traumatic experience for a child as both physical and emotional injuries are common in children after car accidents. Your child may suffer from broken bones, whiplash, traumatic brain injuries, or spinal damage due to the strong force of the car being hit. These injuries can require numerous doctors’ visits, medications, physical therapy, and potential surgeries.
Your child may also experience psychological trauma from the wreck and symptoms of PTSD. PTSD can take the form of nightmares, anxiety, flashbacks of the car accident, fear of getting in the car, and behavioral changes.
Damages Children Can Recover in Accidents
Similar to adults, children will be able to recover both economic and non-economic damages when suing for their car accident injuries. Economic damages can include their medical expenses, while non-economic damages can include their pain and suffering and emotional distress.
The effects that car accidents have on children are significant, and they shouldn’t be taken lightly. It’s important for children to have a strong voice in the courtroom just like adults do, even though they can’t speak for themselves. As a parent, you can speak on your child’s behalf in court. Hopefully, with the help of a strong legal team as well as proper medical treatment, your child will recover quickly.