Achieving success in your Illinois school injury case can be accomplished in a variety of ways. It can be done by taking a case to trial and securing a favorable verdict and award of damages. It can also be achieved, however, by securing a settlement. Each of jury verdicts and settlements have their own distinct advantages. A settlement has the potential benefit of providing you with money more quickly and saving you the potential stress and time that often go with a trial. Whether a settlement does or does not make sense for you is just one of many essential legal decisions in which your case can benefit from the knowledge and experience of a skilled Chicago injury lawyer.
One recent example of a school injury case that led to a successful settlement was the case of L.R., which was reported by the Belleville News Democrat. L.R. was a student with special needs who attended school in the Illinois town of Belleville, which is near St. Louis. Some of L.R.’s disabilities were physical, and, because of that, he used a “gait trainer,” which is a support device for mobility or for assisting those learning to walk. Allegedly, while the student was using the gait trainer one day, he was left unsupervised for a length of time. The lawsuit alleged that the duration of the unsupervised period was long enough for the boy to wander off his gait trainer and travel across a gymnasium and over to a flight of stairs, down which he fell, suffering injuries, according to the report.
A fall like the one L.R. suffered can have serious consequences. The victim can suffer broken bones, soft tissue injuries, and disfigurement. Especially for people with physical disabilities like L.R., these kinds of accidents can carry with them an increased risk of future injury.
L.R.’s mother sued the school for its failure to provide proper supervision and safety for her son. Suing a public school can be complex in Illinois. They are generally immune from liability for acts of negligence. In order to succeed and secure an award of damages, you have to show that the school employee acted recklessly in causing the accident that injured the child. This could include things like failing to provide proper safety protection (like eye or ear protection) that the teacher knows is potentially dangerous, or failing to excuse a child from a physical activity even after the child presented a doctor’s note.
In any type of injury case, one of the first major hurdles is defeating your opponent’s motion for summary judgment. A defendant may not engage in truly meaningful settlement negotiations until after its motion for summary judgment has been denied and it acknowledges that it must settle or take the case to trial and a verdict. That’s especially true in school cases, in which the defense will likely argue that it is immune. In the case of L.R.’s injury, the mother was able to secure a favorable settlement for her son’s injuries. The total payment was $100,000.
If you or a loved one has been hurt at a school, you need to make sure that you have the legal advice you need to avoid the pitfalls that could otherwise lead to the dismissal of your case. The diligent Chicago injury attorneys at Katz, Friedman, Eagle, Eisenstein, Johnson & Bareck have been effectively representing personal injury clients for many years and are ready to handle your case. To set up a free case evaluation, contact us at 800-444-1525 or through our website.
More Blog Posts:
Northern Illinois Elementary School’s Sledding Trip Leads to Second-Grade Student’s Trip to the Emergency Room, Chicago Injury Attorneys Blog, March 28, 2018
Family Sues After Student with Special Needs Drowns in Chicago High School Pool, Chicago Injury Attorneys Blog, April 14, 2017