Injuries to Minors and Children

Minors Defined:

Texas defines a "minor" in several different statutes, and in different ways. The Texas Family Code defines a minor as someone under the age of 17. While the Texas Criminal Code defines a minor as someone under the age of 18. A minor may also be "emancipated" under the law, turning the minor into an adult, if the minor is 17 years of age and taking care of their own financial affairs, or if they are 16 years of age and living apart from their parents and taking care of their own financial affairs.

Minors are unable to file lawsuits without a parent or guardian of some sort. Minors are at risk for all the same types of injuries as adults: including automobile accidents, fireworks, playgrounds, fires, defective products, brain injuries, and swimming accidents.

Children are also at risk from injury and violence. Maltreatment by those in a position of authority, riding as passengers in vehicles, and new drivers all place minors in greater risk.

All of the above risks can cause injury or death. Injuries to a child can cause costs and extraordinary expenses throughout that child's life.

What can the minor recover?: If a minor is injured, they can recover for their injury, disability, pain and suffering, loss of income in the future (when they become an adult), disfigurement, just about all the same things that an adult can recover for what they call "general damages" currently, and all future damages that they are entitled to receive when they become an adult. Minors are not able to recover past medical bills typically, because their parents actually owe those bills. Same with lost income, even if the minor is working, the income actually belongs to the parent under the law, so past lost income that is incurred while the injured person is a minor is a claim that legally belongs to the parent.

What do the parents recover?: Medical bills, lost income, and other "bills" incurred on behalf of the injured minor while they are a minor. Once the injured person becomes an adult, all bills incurred after that date belong to the injured person themselves - since they are not longer a minor.

How long do the parents have to sue for what they owe?: The parents have 2 years from the date of injury in Texas to sue or settle their case for their bills, lost income, etc, for their injured minor.

How long does the minor have to sue for what they are owed?: The minor's statute of limitations begins to run when they turn 18 years of age (or become an adult - if emancipated at an earlier date).

The laws regarding the injury to a minor can be complicated. You need to hire a Dallas child accident attorney if your minor child was injured due to the negligence of another, to ensure you recover the full amount owed.

If you have a minor child who was hurt in the Dallas, North Texas area, contact us online or call (972) 599-4100 for a FREE consultation to discuss your case.


Personal Injury Areas We Help With Are:

Auto Accident and Injury Cases, Personal Injury Cases, 18 Wheeler & Commercial Vehicle Injury Accident Cases, Motorcycle Accident and Injury Cases, Wrongful Death Cases, Pedestrian Injured by Automobile Cases, Slip and Fall & Premises Cases, Workplace & Constructions Injury Cases, Dog Bite Injury Cases, Bicyclers Hit by Automobile Cases .

Types of Coverage in Automobile Injury Cases:

Automobile Liability Insurance, Uninsured Motorist Insurance, Personal Injury Protection (PIP), Medpay Insurance, Property Damage & Collision Coverages for Your Auto

Injury to Minors: 

If your child has been injured due to the negligence of another, you will likely need legal assistance to ensure you recover your full amount owed. Contact our office and talk to a Dallas child accident attorney to discuss your case.

Damages Often Recoverable in Personal Injury Cases Include the Following:

Past and future medical bills, past and future lost earning capacity, past and future lost income, past and future physical impairment, past and future disfigurement, past and future mental anguish, past and future pain and suffering, property damage, loss of use of your property - such as rental car bills, storage, total loss of property, diminished value of property, loss of body member (arm, leg, . . .), loss of body capacity (hearing, eyesight, . . . ), loss of consortium (spouse, parental, child/filial), loss of services, emotional/mental trauma (bystander injury), prenatal injury, exemplary damages, prejudgment interest, attorney's fees, and court costs.

By Doug Goyen, douggoyen@gmail.com 

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