Who Is at Fault When a Child is Killed in an Accident?


Just recently, in early March of this year, a tragic accident took the life of an eight year-old boy in North Las Vegas. In the gated community of the Village at Craig Ranch, on a normal day like any other, children were playing near the neighborhood’s gate.

As Matthew Cattlet was passing through a small gap behind the gate arm that allowed it to open and close, one of his friends inadvertently rode his bicycle over the gate’s sensor. Matthew didn’t have enough time to get through before the gate closed on him and crushed him. Though 911 was called immediately, and some neighbors were able to free Matthew from the gate, he later passed away at University Medical Center.

This kind of case is incredibly tragic, especially when it costs a child’s life. Suddenly, not only are his parents bereft of their son, but they are now burdened with a hospital bill and funeral expenses, too. While gaining compensation will not bring Matthew back, it will help alleviate the stress of that burden. But how can parents in this kind of situation gain compensation? A Las Vegas personal injury lawyer can help.

Determining Fault

A case like this one falls under tort law. Under tort law, if one party’s negligent actions result in another party’s injury or death, the first party will be held liable. Tort laws cover accidents like Matthew’s, workers’ compensation, auto accidents, and medical malpractice, as well.

If you have a child or loved one who’s been killed in an accident, you’ll first need to determine who is at fault. In this case, a sign was posted instructing children not to play near the gate. However, no one was supervising the area, and no physical deterrents were in place to keep children away from the gate.

In a case like this one, the parents could pursue compensation from the homeowners’ association, the neighborhood’s developer, and/or the gate’s manufacturer. If you find yourself in this kind of position, where you do not have a clear idea of who is responsible for the injury or death of your child, a Las Vegas personal injury lawyer can help.

How Personal Injury Lawyers Help

Personal injury lawyers in Las Vegas are not only aware of, and familiar, with laws pertaining to accidents, injuries, and fatalities; they’re experts on the subject. Your attorney can help you determine who is actually at fault and how to pursue them and/or their insurance company.

Pursuing compensation for fatal accidents with the help of a qualified personal injury lawyer in Las Vegas can not only gain you the compensation you need, but it can also help prevent future accidents. After an insurance company is forced to pay a large sum to grieving parents, they will be more likely to take greater precautions in the future. By pursuing your case, you could prevent the same kind of accident from happening to someone else’s child.

If your child, or someone else you love, has been injured or killed in an accident, don’t hesitate to call a Las Vegas personal injury lawyer for help.

Bighorn Staff

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