How is a Child Injury Case Different Than Other Cases?

Video Transcription:
When a child has been injured in some type of an accident and they have a claim, the settlement of their claim is going to be monitored and it must be approved by a circuit judge in Florida. It's a totally different process than if an adult is injured and settles their case on their own or even with a lawyer.

When a child's injury case is settled, particularly where they receive over a certain amount of money in their settlement, the judge has to approve the settlement. And, there's a step that has to be taken in that process. A petition has to be filed asking the court to approve the settlement. An independent lawyer called a guardian ad litem is typically appointed or brought into the case to review the settlement to make sure that lawyer agrees that it's in the child's best interest. And, this guardian ad litem then writes a report that goes to the court, and in some cases they may come and testify, that they agree with the amount of the settlement and how it's being structured.

Then the court has a hearing. Many times they'll want to hear from the parents or the guardian for the child. They'll have the report and the recommendation of the guardian ad litem and at that point the court will make a decision whether they approve or disapprove the settlement of the minor's case.

Of course, when a minor gets money in Florida, you don't just give them a check. There's a process or a structure set up so that the minor won't receive the money typically until they are 18 years-old. Sometimes the money is delayed even further. So, there are various ways that this can be accomplished.

Because of all the different processes involved in a child injury case, I recommend working with a lawyer who understands and has experience handling such cases.

Jim Dodson
A Florida injury lawyer, family man and avid cyclist who clients have trusted for over 25 years.