Son broke nose while on a field trip with his daycare...
(Wyoming, PA, USA)
My son went on a field trip to a "bounce house" with his daycare provider. After just a few minutes there he fell out of one of the attractions face first onto a mat.
One of the teachers in attendance called me and told me that he got hurt, his nose was black and blue and swollen but not broken. I asked how she knew it was not broken and she said that it wasn't bleeding. Once I arrived she made it known to me that she had to sign a release of liability form so that he could participate.
I took him to the doctor and they sent him for a CAT scan and x-rays which showed that it was broken but that it was not a clean break. Now he has to see a specialist. I am not "lawsuit happy" but the tests and doctor fees will be hefty.
I'd like to know who is responsible for the medical bills since I did not personally sign any release forms? Thank you.
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ANSWER for "Son broke nose while on a field trip with his daycare...":
Sheri (Wyoming, PA, USA):
If you didn’t sign a release form and your child was injured while on a daycare outing the daycare center should be liable. Although the daycare center itself may not have acted negligently, they still have a very high standard of care when it comes to very young children.
Contact the administrator or owner of the daycare center. Tell her you are not happy about the injuries suffered by your child.
Tell her you would like the name of the daycare’s insurance company. You can tell her you would prefer not to hire an Attorney or file a lawsuit, but you may have to consider legal action if she will not cooperate.
Also suggest to her she contact her insurance company before you do. That way a Claim can be set up before you call. Once a claim has been created a Claims Adjuster will be assigned to handle the claim.
Contact the Adjuster. Tell her about the facts as you know them. There shouldn’t be any controversy about coverage. The liability appears to be clear. No one can accuse your young child of any contributory negligence. He is too young to be responsible for any matters concerning his well-being.
You should be able to negotiate a settlement which compensates you for all medical bills, called “Hard Costs”.
Don’t forget to submit any and all of your out of pocket expenses. Out of pocket expenses can include, but are not limited to, bandages, prescription and non-prescription medicine, baby sitter fees, even the gasoline you've used while running around to doctors’ offices and other places necessary for the treatment and recovery of your son.
If you had to miss any work, your lost wages are compensable as well. Finally, do not forget to ask for an additional amount for your son’s pain and suffering.
Although the law permits a mother herself to recover for a child’s pain and suffering, it does only in the rarest of cases. The circumstances surrounding your son's injuries, thankfully, will probably not qualify.
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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