Compensation for autistic child scarred in slip and fall?
In March of 2012, my daughter (then, 4 years old) and I were walking out to the Head Start bus when we slipped on black ice and her chin hit the pavement. A chunk of her chin flesh came out and she was unable to get stitches.
The insurance company only offered to reimburse for band aids and plastic surgery but, having an autistic child, this type of surgery would have caused a great deal more of trauma so, we just left it to heal.
She will live with this scar forever and we were never offered monetary compensation for pain and suffering or for the trauma scar. After going through some paperwork, I ran across the insurance letters and questioned why they never offered her a settlement amount.
Is there anything I can do to get her compensation for the scar? How would I pursue the insurance company for this? Thank you for any information you can give that may point me in the right direction.
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ANSWER for "Compensation for autistic child scarred in slip and fall?":
Rachel (Cadott, WI):
From the facts you present, it appears you may have already settled your daughter's personal injury claim with the insurance company. If that is the case, on behalf of your daughter you likely signed a full and complete release of all future claims. Doing so effectively ended the claim for all purposes.
In the event you have not finalized your daughter's injury claim, you should immediately contact a personal injury attorney.
Some injury claims can be handled without an attorney. These are usually "soft tissue" injuries that include sprains and strains, minor cuts and bruises, and the like. More serious "hard injuries" such as fractures, head trauma, scarring, etc. should only be pursued by an experienced personal injury attorney.
Your daughter's case falls under the hard injury category. Permanent scars, especially those to the facial area can have long-enduring effects upon a victim, especially a young victim like your daughter.
It should be noted if you already settled your daughter's injury claim, your daughter may be able to file her own injury claim when she turns 18. To do so she would have to collaterally attack you and your decision to settle her claim for an inappropriate amount. Speak with a lawyer to get more specifics.
The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.
Best of luck,
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