Washington DC Lawyer for TBI’s Involving Children
Children are among the people most vulnerable to suffering a traumatic brain injury (TBI). Children under a year old are most likely to suffer a TBI that is severe enough to require hospitalization, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says. Children ages 1 to 4 and 15 to 19 are in the second and third most likely age groups to be treated in an emergency department for a TBI.
Most TBIs among children up to age 14 are caused by falls, the CDC says. Car crashes, including many causing TBI, are the leading cause of hospitalizations for adolescents age 15 and into their young adult years. Children are also susceptible to TBI from other kinds of accidents, as well as from child abuse.
If your child has suffered a TBI in an accident or an assault, your family may be able to obtain compensation for your child’s medical care and other expenses. Particularly if an accident happened while your child was under another adult’s supervision, you should have an experienced personal injury attorney investigate.
The Abelson Law Firm in Washington DC can assist you if an accident harmed your child. We are committed to seeking justice for injured children.
Call us now or contact us online for a free claim review and advice about your legal rights.
Common Causes of TBI in Children
There are a number of ways a child may suffer a TBI. The most common include:
- Falls – Falls are the leading cause of TBI, accounting for about 40 percent of all TBIs in the United States that require emergency room care or hospitalization, or cause death. More than half (55 percent) of TBIs among children up to age 14 are caused by falls, including in playground accidents, bicycle accidents and slip- or trip-and-fall accidents.
- Car accidents – Motor vehicle crashes are the third overall leading cause of TBI, the CDC says. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says about three children age 14 and younger were killed and 469 were injured every day in the United States in motor vehicle crashes during one recent year.
- Blunt trauma – Close to a quarter (24 percent) of all TBIs in children younger than 15 years of age were caused by being struck or hit by or against something, the CDC says.
- Sports-related injury – More than 70 percent of emergency room visits for sports- and recreation-related TBIs were among people age 10 to 19, the CDC says.
- Assault – About 10 percent of all TBIs are caused by criminal assault, including 3 percent of TBIs in children younger than 15 years old, the CDC says. Shaken baby syndrome (SBS), which is caused by violently shaking an infant by the shoulders, arms or legs, is a form of child abuse that causes TBI.
Signs of TBI in Children
A very young child hurt outside of your supervision may not be able to report his or her injury. An older child may be afraid to tell or not understand the consequences of being hurt in a fall. That makes it important to be able to recognize the warning signs of TBI in children.
The Mayo Clinic says a child with TBI may exhibit:
- Change in eating or nursing habits.
- Persistent crying and inability to be consoled.
- Unusual or easy irritability.
- Change in ability to pay attention.
- Change in sleep habits.
- Sad or depressed mood.
- Loss of interest in favorite toys or activities.
Legal Protection for Young TBI Victims
Our laws make special provisions for the protection of children from personal injury and other harm. Whenan underage (minor) child is injured, a guardian ad litem (“for the suit”) will be named to hold legal authority to look after the child’s personal and property interests. This is usually the child’s parent or parents.
Additionally, the legal concept of “in loco parentis” (Latin for “in the place of a parent”) holds that an individual may assume parental status and responsibilities for a minor-age child without formally adopting the child. This applies to teachers and daycare workers, coaches, camp counselors and others supervising children in school or other organized settings. It also applies to friends and neighbors in some cases.
If your child has suffered a TBI in an accident in which another person or organization may have been at fault, you may be able to seek compensation to assist with the child’s medical bills and any other losses. This may include the pain and suffering of the child and his or her parents, lost wages or diminished earning potential and, in cases of egregious behavior, punitive damages, which is compensation meant to punish a defendant’s recklessness.
Contact a Washington DC Brain Injury Attorney About Your Child’s TBI
If your child has suffered a TBI in an accident or while under another person’s or organization’s supervision in the D.C. metro area, contact The Abelson Law Firm right away. We can investigate your child’s injury and help you obtain compensation if someone’s negligence played a role.
Call us today or fill out our online contact form for a free, no-obligation evaluation of your case and advice about the legal options available to your family.
- CDC – Traumatic Brain Injury
- CDC – Shaken Baby Syndrome
- National Highway Traffic Safety Administration – Traffic Safety Facts: Children