Can a minor sue for personal injury?

Children often spend time playing outdoors in the yard, at a park or at a friend’s house. Children engage in sporting activities through community or school leagues, also opening up the possibilities of injury or getting into an accident.

Though a parent may carry medical insurance for a minor that could address the expenses of treating an injury, Tennessee laws allow a parent to bring suit against the individual whose negligence contributed to the injury. It also allows a minor to sue for damages.

Statute of limitations for injuries to minors

Under state law, a child is able to bring a lawsuit against another to recover personal injury damages up until one year past the eighteenth birthday. Minors are not able to bring a suit on their own in court until their eighteenth birthday, meaning a parent or appointed representative must bring the lawsuit on behalf of the child. In this case, the individual bringing suit has one year from the date of the accident to file a claim.

Compensation eligibility

Much like a case involving an adult, compensation eligibility for a minor includes pain and suffering, related medical care, lost wages for a child employed prior to the incident and emotional counseling. A parent bringing the lawsuit could also attempt to recover the medical expenses of treatment or rehabilitation, as well as any wages lost while the parent cared for the child.

A court could deem other damages necessary or appropriate to award and an attorney could help litigate these. Following the statute of limitations is crucial to bringing a suit for an injury against a minor.