Does your child have to spend time in a daycare? If so, it is important that you ensure the daycare facility is adhering to safety standards. Children often sustain preventable injuries in California daycare centers.
True, daycare facilities traditionally have parents sign release forms before dropping their kid(s) off. Yet, these release forms do not protect the daycare facility and staff from all liability. Our courts traditionally hold that it is against public policy for a daycare facility to be relieved from liability if a child is injured while under its care. Therefore, daycares may not require parents to release their rights to compensation should their child sustain injury at the daycare. This post aims at explaining what to do to increase your chances of compensation.
The Controlling Law
California’s negligence law outlines your rights when your child is injured while under the care of a daycare center. Under this law, you or your attorney must prove the following four elements. First of all, you must show that the daycare owed you a duty of care. This is easy. If you place your child in the control and care of a daycare, they assume a duty to care for your child and to protect him or her from bodily injury.
Second, you must show that the daycare breached said duty of care. You can establish this by showing that the daycare failed to do what was reasonably possible to protect your child from injury. In other words, you can show that the daycare did not act as a reasonable daycare would under similar circumstances.
You can also establish this by showing that the daycare facility, its owners, or its staff members failed to comply with the strict regulations listed in California Code of Regulations Title 22 § 101152. California has additional laws and regulations pertaining to daycares. If your child was injured and it can be shown that the daycare violated one of these laws or regulations, this will automatically establish negligence. Yet, you will still need to prove the third and fourth elements listed below.
Third, you must show that the daycare’s breach directly and proximately caused harm to your child. Direct cause can be established by showing that the injury was a direct result of the daycare’s negligent conduct. Show that the injury would not have occurred in the absence of the daycare’s negligence. Proximate cause, on the other hand, can be established by showing that the injury was a foreseeable result of the daycare’s negligence. For example, a child’s finger being cut off is a foreseeable result of the day care allowing its children to run with scissors.
Fourth, finally, you must show that your child was injured. To do this, you can show the medical bills incurred, lost wages, et cetera.
Above all, if your child was injured at a daycare, you may be entitled to compensation for the resulting damages. Said compensation includes, but is certainly not limited to, medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. To improve your chances of compensation, it is imperative that you hire an experienced personal injury lawyer. An experienced personal injury lawyer will know how to talk to insurance adjusters and will know how to gather relevant evidence that favors your claim.
About The Author
Sherwin Arzani is a founding attorney at Citywide Law Group, a personal injury law firm located in Los Angeles, CA. Mr. Arzani and his team have over 20 years of combined experience helping people injured in car accidents , motorcycle accidents, dog bites, pedestrian accidents, and those seeking to bring a wrongful death claim.