According to the National Athletic Trainers Association, there are more than seven million high school athletes in the United States and around 40 million kids between the ages of six and 18 who play organized sports. Unfortunately, playing sports exposes these young people to the risk of injury, sometimes severe injury. One of the most devastating injuries a child can experience when playing sports is a spinal cord injury. Spinal injuries from a sports accident can cause paralysis or, in some cases, death.
When a sporting accident is the cause of a fatal spinal cord injury to a child, it is important to determine if anyone was to blame for the incident. If the injury was the result of someone’s negligence or wrongdoing, the parent’s may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit.
Sports Accidents Can Cause Serious Injuries
According to the National High School Sports-Related Injury Surveillance Study, more than 715,000 high school athletes faced injuries in sports accidents. Young athletes sustained more than 31,772 neck injuries and more than 70,911 injuries to the trunk.
Spinal injuries can affect vertebrae in the neck as well as lower along the spine. These injuries may occur in any sport children play. From an accident in a pool to a fall while running track to a bad tackle in football, a child’s spine could be hurt in many different ways.
Johns Hopkins Medicine indicates that when the level of injury to the spine is in the C2-C3 vertebrae, the injury is generally fatal as a result of an inability to breathe. Other spinal injuries may also result in death depending upon the location and extent of damage.
When Can You File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit After a Sports Accident?
Parents can file a wrongful death legal action whenever a spinal cord injury occurred due to negligence or wrongdoing when a child was participating in sports. There may be multiple parties responsible after a sports accident that caused a spinal injury.
A school, club, or organization that ran a sports program could be held responsible if the school was negligent in hiring a coach to run the team or if a school employee was negligent in supervising the children playing sports. A school, club, organization, or coach could also be responsible if a child under their care suffered a spinal injury in a sporting accident and the organization was negligent in obtaining prompt medical attention for the injured child.
The school and coaches are not the only ones who could be held liable in a wrongful death claim either. An equipment manufacturer could be held responsible if sporting equipment malfunctions that was supposed to protect a child from spinal cord injury during sports activities
Parents may file a civil lawsuit against anyone who they believe was directly responsible for a child’s sports accident that caused a spinal cord injury. The California Civil Jury instructions explain the types of damages parents can recover in these types of cases, including the reasonable value of household services, the value of financial support the minor would have contributed to the family, the loss of benefits or gifts the child was expected to receive, and funeral or burial expenses.
Getting Help from a Long Beach Wrongful Death Lawyer after a Fatal Spinal Cord Injury
A Long Beach wrongful death lawyer can help you to determine if it is possible to file a wrongful death lawsuit when a sporting accident causes a spinal cord injury that kills a child.
Call the Law Office of Michael D. Waks at 888-394-1174 or use the convenient online contact form to schedule a free consultation. You are under no obligation and you will never pay any money unless you recover damages for your injuries. I offer bilingual services as part of my comprehensive approach to legal representation and I am available 24/7 to talk to you about your case.
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