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How Much Compensation does a Child get in a Car Accident?

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No parent wants to see their child injured in a car accident. If that does happen, parents want to do what they can to help their child recover. If the car crash was caused by another person’s negligence, you should be entitled to compensation. It is vital that children injured in a car accident get the coverage they need.

How is an insurance claim different for minors?

Most car accident victims receive the compensation they need through insurance claims, whether through their own or the at-fault driver’s carrier. Anyone under the age of 18 is considered a minor in a crash and they cannot legally file a claim. An individual called a “next friend” will file the claim on the minor’s behalf. Usually, the minor’s parent or guardian is considered the “next friend.”

What if a personal injury lawsuit is necessary?

There are times when a personal injury lawsuit may be necessary for a car accident victim to recover the compensation they deserve. This could be the case if the at-fault driver’s insurance carrier refuses to offer a fair settlement or if a claim is denied. For personal injury lawsuits, it is recommended that a victim and their family work with a car accident attorney.

The statute of limitations that an injury victim has to file a lawsuit is two years in Illinois. Filing after the two-year time frame will usually result in the case being dismissed. However, there are exceptions for minors who are injured. If a child is under 18 years of age at the time of a crash, the statute of limitations does not begin until they turn 18.

What type of compensation is available for minors in car accidents?

When a child is injured in a car accident, they could be entitled to various types of compensation. This could include:

  • Hospital bills
  • Ongoing medical care
  • Therapy and rehabilitation services
  • Loss of ability to earn income in the future
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of enjoyment
  • Possible punitive damages against the negligent party

In some cases, parents may also be entitled to get compensation for the losses they have incurred while having to care for their child.

How much compensation a child is awarded depends on the severity of their injuries and other factors related to their specific case. A child that has been disabled and will suffer from lifelong consequences will receive more than one who sustained a broken arm that will heal completely.

How often do these incidents occur?

During the latest reporting year in Illinois, there were 311,679 total car crashes across the state. Out of those, there were:

  • 66,889 total injury crashes
  • 998 fatal crashes

Illinois reports that there were more than 14,500 children under the age of 18 injured in car accidents during that same year. It is not uncommon for a child to sustain serious injuries in a car accident because they are not yet fully developed. Some of the most common child car crash injuries include:

Each of these injuries can lead to major medical expenses as well as immense physical and emotional pain and suffering.

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