When we send our kids to school for the day, we expect that the school and adults present will provide a safe and nurturing environment for our children. We entrust their safety to people who are expected to be professionals trained to educate, nurture, and care for youngsters. Indiana law recognizes the doctrine of “in loco parentis,” meaning “in the place of a parent.” As applied to schools, the doctrine places the same duty of care that a parent owes to a child upon the school while the child is at school. As a result, if your child gets injured through a school’s neglect, you may be able to recover damages through an Indiana negligence lawsuit.
Injuries that a child could sustain while at school that may be actionable include:
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If your child has been injured in a school incident, you should consult with an experienced Indianapolis personal injury attorney. Because of the complicated legal issues that arise in suing school districts, you should make sure that you retain an attorney who has experience handling negligent supervision cases against schools or teachers.
For example, according to a report published by ABC affiliate RTV6, a local student and his brother are suing another boy he alleges bullied him, the boy’s mother, and the Franklin Township Community School Corporation. The lawsuit alleges that the plaintiff, Caleb Jones, was beaten on a school bus, resulting in “personal injuries, pain and suffering, permanent injuries, scarring, emotional injuries and future pain and suffering," according to the complaint. The school corporation is implicated because Jones alleges that the bus driver was not properly trained in how to deal with students assaulting other students. Reports indicate that the beating was captured on a cell phone video, and when the bus driver appears on the video, he verbally admonishes the boys before walking away. The incident resulted in doctors placing three staples in Jones’ head when he was being treated for his injuries.
Sometimes we dismiss these sort of incidents as “kids being kids.” Sure, kids are sometimes prone to bullying and some kids are even prone to violent behavior. But isn’t this exactly why education professionals need to be properly trained to prevent these sort of incidents from happening? The Indiana courts think so.
Schools and school employees are responsible for their students’ safety while they are at school and during school-sponsored events. Children who are injured while at school may be entitled to compensation if the school or its agents were negligent in supervising their students. After a school-related injury, it is important to contact the school and document as much information about the incident as possible. If warranted, you should also contact local law enforcement to determine whether a crime was committed. If so, a criminal conviction may make it easier to establish civil liability for any injuries sustained. Anyone considering legal action against a school, teacher, or other party responsible for the care of children should contact an experienced Indiana personal injury attorney. An attorney will be able to help you determine whether you have a claim, and if you do, who you may be able to sue.
The bottom line is that bullying, school violence, and an unnecessarily dangerous school environment is unacceptable for our kids and we should all work to stop it.
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Don is a founding partner and one of the nation’s top-ranked personal injury litigators. He is a member of the Multi-million Dollar Advocates Forum, which includes less than 1% of the nation’s trial lawyers, and awarded the highest ranking given by Martindale Hubbel and AVVO.
More importantly, Don understands representing personal injury victims is about more than recovering the best settlement: it’s about helping clients get back on their feet and supporting them in every aspect of their recovery.
In nearly all cases, our clients seek compensation from the wrongdoer’s insurance company. Before forming Wruck Paupore, Jason worked for a prominent law firm representing some of the world’s largest insurers. This experience gives Jason a deep understanding of the insurance industry and the strategies it uses to pay injury victims as little as possible.
Jason -- and our entire team -- put this inside knowledge to work to force insurance companies to pay what is actually owed. Often, we use the insurance company’s own tactics against them as we fight for the full compensation our client deserves.
For more than four decades, Keith has been fighting for injury victims. During that time, he’s watched the insurance industry change, with insurers now more interested in protecting their stock price than treating injury victims fairly.
Since the beginning, Keith has put people first. From his childhood in Gary, Indiana during the 1960’s and working his way through law school, Keith has risen to become one of the Midwest’s most respected trial lawyers. He has never forgotten that being a lawyer is about helping people -- and seeing injury victims through struggles in a way that could change their lives forever.
Over the decades, Keith, Don and Jason have fought relentlessly for clients, even when other lawyers have said the case was impossible to win.
Advertising Materials / Legal Advertising. Any testimonials or stories set forth on this website are by actual clients and their families. Such testimonials or stories are provided for informational purposes only and are not to be considered as a promise or guarantee as to the outcome of your specific case and may not be typical. Every case presents unique facts and circumstances. You case and expected outcome will likely differ from the facts of the cases listed. The only way to properly evaluate your case is to consult with a qualified personal injury attorney.