We dread to think that, in the process of seeking medical help, we may be left with new injuries resulting from clinical negligence. This is even harder to comprehend when it happens to your child or a young person in your family.
This is why it’s only understandable that parents and carers will often make child medical negligence claims on behalf of those who can’t do it for themselves. But how are these claims made and how are they handled?
Can a child make a clinical negligence claim?
An individual under the age of 18 can’t make their own claim for medical negligence. They are, however, still eligible to benefit from compensation awarded in reparation for a case of medical negligence. They simply need an adult of sound capacity to act in their stead, known as a ‘litigation friend’.
With their litigation friend and a solicitor acting by their side, children can pursue medical negligence claims just the same as anybody else.
Alternatively, once they turn 18 years of age, an individual has three years in which they can make their own claim.
Should I wait to make a child’s medical negligence claim?
It may be the case that the full extent of the child’s injuries cannot actually be determined until they’ve grown older.
In cases such as these, a payment known as an interim payment will be made to support the child and their family in the meantime, until the claim can be finalised at a later date.
How is compensation paid to children?
Given the young age that some victims of clinical negligence will sadly be, it isn’t reasonable to expect them to handle a large sum of compensation.
For that reason, compensation awarded in a successful case will be invested into a special kind of savings account to be held until the claimant reaches 18. Some of this money may be released at the time if the court deems it appropriate to do so, such as for funding educational or medical needs.
Making a claim with Mark Reynolds Solicitors
Our solicitors are fully qualified and ready to help you undertake a medical negligence claim.
We understand how difficult and emotional it can be to do this on behalf of family. That’s why we’ll take our time and listen to you every step of the way, so that we can work through your claim together and see it through with patience and compassion.
If you found this article useful, check here to find out How Does A Clinical Negligence Claim Succeed?