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Was Your Child Injured in a Car Accident in Las Vegas? A Guide to Your Rights

Did you know that car crashes are consistently among the leading causes of serious accidental injuries among children? The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that 162,298 minors were hurt in motor vehicle collisions in the United States in 2021 alone.

For parents, few things are more stressful than a child’s accident. You must know what to do to protect your child’s health, safety, and legal rights. In this article, our Las Vegas car accident lawyer provides a guide to child injuries and motor vehicle collisions in Nevada.

Children May Suffer Serious Injuries in Automobile Accidents

Children are vulnerable—especially young kids. While a car accident poses a serious risk to anybody, it can be particularly devastating for a child. Our firm handles all types of personal injury cases. Some of the most common injuries that children sustain in car accidents in Las Vegas include:

  • Cuts/Lacerations: Among the most common injuries for kids in car accidents are cuts. These can occur from shattered glass or sharp metal. A serious laceration can leave a child with painful and sometimes disfiguring wounds. Emergency care may be needed.
  • Soft Tissue Damage: Soft tissue damage is also prevalent, where the impact and sudden movements cause strains, sprains, or bruises to muscles, tendons, and ligaments. This type of injury might not be immediately apparent. A child must be properly evaluated.
  • Broken Bones: Broken bones are another frequent consequence of car accidents for children. The force of a collision can easily fracture the more fragile bones of younger people. All fractured or broken bones are a medical emergency. 
  • Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs): Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) are particularly concerning. Even a seemingly minor head trauma can result in a concussion. For children, a possible concussion/TBI must be properly diagnosed and treated.
  • Internal Injuries: Internal injuries are a silent threat in car accidents. Damage to organs or internal bleeding might not be immediately noticeable but can be life-threatening if not treated. These injuries require emergency care. 
  • Spinal Cord Damage: All spinal cord injuries are catastrophic injuries. It is one of the most severe injuries a child can sustain in a car accident. It can lead to paralysis or other long-term impairments.

What to Do If Your Child is a Passenger in a Car Accident in Las Vegas

If your child was hurt as a passenger in an automobile accident in Las Vegas, it is normal to feel stressed and overwhelmed. Take a proactive approach. Here are three key steps:

  • Get Your Child Immediate Medical Attention: A child’s medical needs are always the top priority after a motor vehicle crash. Even if your child seems okay, it’s important to get them checked out by a doctor right away. Doing so is key to protecting their health and well-being. It is required if you plan to pursue a personal injury claim on your child’s behalf
  • Ensure that the Accident is Reported to Law Enforcement: All injury crashes in Nevada must be reported to state or local law enforcement. If your kid is hurt in a motor vehicle crash, be sure that the collision is reported. You should proactively document the crash. 
  • Consult With a Las Vegas Auto Accident Attorney: Do not try to navigate a serious car accident claim alone. If you are bringing a claim for your child, the legal process can be even more complicated. Consult with a Las Vegas car accident lawyer who has experience handling child injury cases.

Know Your Rights and Know the Law: Child Injury Claims in Nevada

In Nevada, some unique rules and regulations affect the child injury claims process. Here are three of the most important things that you should know as a parent if your kid was hurt in a car accident in Las Vegas:

  • You Have to Bring a Claim on Behalf of Your Child: As a general rule, a minor cannot bring a claim on their own in Nevada. As a parent or guardian, you must act on their behalf. This is called being a “representative” or “litigation friend.” You will be the one making decisions, handling insurance companies, working with a lawyer, and, if needed, taking the case to court. 
  • You Can Seek Compensation for Your Child and Family: Children have every right to seek compensation for the full extent of their damages after a car crash. If your child is injured, you can seek compensation not just for their medical bills, but for other things too. This might include pain and suffering, emotional trauma, and any future costs related to the injury, like ongoing care or therapy. 
  • A Personal Injury Settlement Must Approved By the Court: If an adult is hurt in a car crash, they can agree to an out-of-court settlement with an insurance company. Indeed, most cases are resolved this way. The same is true for a child—except that the same will usually require court approval. Under Nevada law (NRS § 41.200), a court will look at the settlement to make sure it’s fair and really in the child’s best interest. Your Las Vegas car accident lawyer can help you ensure that any settlement is structured properly to get court approval.

Note: The rules are the same even if your child is a licensed driver. As long as he or she is a minor—even if 16 or 17 years of age—any car accident injury claim must be filed by a parent or guardian.

Schedule a Free Consultation With a Top Las Vegas Child Injury Car Accident Attorney Today

At Ladah Law Firm, our Las Vegas auto accident attorneys have the skills and experience to handle child injury claims. If your kid was hurt in a motor vehicle crash, we are here to help. Give us a phone call now at (702) 570-2037 or connect with us online for a free case review. From our law office in Las Vegas, we handle child injury claims in Clark County and throughout Nevada.