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Florida Personal Injury Cases – Expert Advice – Finger Injury

October 17, 2009

The following is an expert answer given by Florida Premises Liability Lawyer, Joseph M. Maus, and taken from AllExperts.com, a free Q & A service on the internet:

Subject: My son was injured at school

Question: My son was in school when his finger got slammed in the door, which led him to having his finger partially amputated. From my understanding, there were no security guards around or teachers around when this happened. Someone gave me the advice to sue the school…Is this possible?

Answer: Your email does not indicate what state you live in.  I am a Florida personal injury attorney specializing in Florida personal injury cases, auto accident injuries, and Florida workers compensation claims.  I can only advise you on what the law is in Florida, so it is best that you speak to an accident attorney in your area to find out what rights you may have.

Your son may have a claim against the school, but his claim would need to be investigated more fully.  Your email does not indicate how old your son is, or how the incident occurred.  I would be interested in speaking with you further if you’re located in Florida.

A school is held responsible for dangerous conditions which they know about, or should know about, and their failure to protect the children at the school from the dangers.  A door that swings shut too rapidly, or too harshly, putting the kids at risk, would be the type of dangerous condition the school should know about, and should repair so the kids do not get hurt. I have handled cases before very similar to this where many people that had observed the door shut too quickly before the accident, so as to put people at risk when it slams, yet the school did not fix the door.

Most school have insurance for the type of incident you have described. Their insurance usually includes "medical payments coverage", or Medpay. Medpay is a type of insurance coverage that pays for medical bills which arise out of an injury that occurs at the school.  If you have incurred out of pocket medical bills, you should speak to the school to find out whether they have medpay coverage.  If so, you need to submit the bills to the school’s insurance company and you will be reimbursed.  The school should also have liability insurance coverage which would cover your son for his injury and pain and suffering.  He obviously has a very serious injury.

If your son does have a claim, you would not sue right away.   Most claims get resolved without having to file a lawsuit.  Once your son finishes his medical treatment, your accident lawyer would get the medical records together, photos of the injury, and copies of his medical bills, then submit them to the school, or its insurance company in an effort to settle the claim.  If the school doesn’t settle the claim, then you would file a lawsuit.

You should contact an attorney soon.  There are many steps your attorney should take now, i.e. notify the insurance company for the school, and find out what types of coverage are available.  There are also statutes of limitations which may apply and preclude you from bringing a claim if you wait too long.  In Florida personal injury cases, an accident or injury lawyer would verify the statute of limitations for a negligence claim is four years, unless it is a public school.  There are special rules for Florida personal injury cases which apply to governmental entities such as public schools, including when you have to notify them.  If it is a public school in Florida, there are also other entities that you have to put on notice of your claim, so it is best to speak with a accident injury lawyer as soon as possible.

Most attorneys specializing in premises liability claims handle the claims on a contingent basis,i.e. the attorneys fee is a percentage of any money they recover for you, and offer a free, no-obligation consultation to discuss whether you have a viable case.

For more information about Florida personal injury cases, contact Florida premises liability lawyer, Joseph M. Maus at 1-866-556-5529, visit his website at mauslawfirm.com or email him today.

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