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Child Car Accident Claims – How Much Compensation Can I Claim?

By Danielle Jordan. Last Updated 6th September 2023. Welcome to our child car accident claims guide, where we’ll explain how to claim accident compensation.

Children that have been injured in a car accident, whether they were a passenger in a car, or a pedestrian, have as much right as an adult to claim personal injury compensation for the injuries they have sustained. However, the claims process is a little bit different when the claimant is under 18. The claimant would need a parent or guardian to claim on their behalf and act as a litigation friend.

You’ll find more information about this further on in the guide. Alternatively, get in touch with us for a consultation about your personal injury case and free legal advice:

  • Call our team on 0800 073 8804
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  • Use the live chat on your screen to speak with one of our advisors

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What is a child car accident claim?

Before looking at how you could claim child car accident compensation, let’s look at the claims process itself.

Child car accident compensation

Child car accident compensation

Being involved in a car accident and suffering an injury, as a result, is a very hard and traumatic experience to have to go through, but for a child to endure the pain and suffering of a car accident injury feels somewhat worse, especially if it is your child, and was due to someone else’s negligence.

Although money cannot make up for seeing your child suffer, a car accident involving children claim not my fault can payout compensation that could make a huge difference to a child’s treatment, recovery and even their future.

Child car accident claims could therefore pay for the initial costs of their injury and provide funds for future treatments and allow them to get the support they may need to live their life as independently as possible.

My Child Was Involved In A Car Accident – What Evidence Do I Need To Claim?

If your child was involved in a car accident and you would like to make a claim on their behalf, you will need to prove that it was a breach of another driver’s duty of care that caused their injuries.

Collecting sufficient evidence could help prove the nature of your child’s injuries as well as who was liable for the car crash.

Some examples of evidence that could be useful in a claim include:

  • The police report, if the accident was reported to the police.
  • A copy of your child’s medical records showing the nature of the injuries they suffered and what treatment they required.
  • Video footage of the accident, such as from a dashcam or CCTV.
  • The contact details of anyone who saw what happened so they can give a statement later into the claiming process.

One of our advisors can give you free advice about what to do following a car accident for a child claim to be made. Additionally, they could put you in touch with one of our No Win No Fee solicitors, who could help you gather evidence, provided you have a valid case.

What is a litigation friend?

If you want to make a claim for accident compensation on behalf of a child under your care, you can do so by acting as a litigation friend. In this section, we’ll explain what this role involves.

A limitation friend is someone authorised by the court to represent the claimant (litigant in person) and conduct their case on their behalf. A litigation friend is usually required in such circumstances where the litigant in person is under 18, is someone with a mental disability, or has requested a litigation friend.

There are two types of litigation friends:

1). A McKenzie friend (applies in Scotland only)

These support and accompany the claimant in court. They do not necessarily have to know or be a friend of the claimant and often have some training and/or knowledge in the relevant area of law. Claimants’ do not automatically have the right to a McKenzie friend, but courts usually allow them if requested.

Besides giving moral support, a McKenzie friend can also take notes during court proceedings, discreetly give the claimant advice, and generally improve your experience.
However, they are not allowed to speak out in court proceedings, act on behalf of the claimant or act as their agent or manage the case outside of court.

2). A Litigation Friend (England and Wales)

These are people who are not legally qualified but can accompany the claimant to court. They are also allowed to represent the claimant and present the case to the court on their behalf. The claimant must be in court as well, though, for them to do this. A Lay Representative is usually either the claimant’s parent, guardian, spouse, friend, colleague or partner.

The court will need to be advised beforehand that a Lay Representative will present the child car accident claims.

How to begin a car accident involving children claim

If your child is in a car accident and suffers an injury. As a result, they could receive accident compensation. To get help with this, you can ring us and speak to a member of our professional team.

When you call us, we will offer you a free consultancy session where you can ask as many questions as you need to regarding the claims process for a car accident involving children. We will then also ask you some questions as well just so that we have all the information we need to start your claim.

Once we have discussed your case, we can begin your claim. All our specialist claims solicitors work on a No Win No Fee basis, and so there is absolutely no initial financial outlay for you and no unexpected bills. You don’t need to pay any legal fees unless your case is a success.

Sometimes a local medical assessment is a necessity. We can arrange this at a clinic local to you and at a time that is convenient for you. This is free as part of our service, and so it wouldn’t cost you anything. Of course, we can discuss this in more detail during your free consultation.

Can I Claim For An Accident After 3 Years?

Personal injury claims have time limits in which they must be started, or they may be statute-barred. The usual time limit to start an accident claim in the UK is typically 3 years from the date of the accident. This, however, does not apply if the claimant is under 18.

The time limit it suspended in these cases. Meaning you could be able to start a claim for an accident after 3 years for a minor, providing they have not yet turned 18. If they have turned 18 and a claim has not been started on their behalf by a litigation friend, they will have the usual 3 years in which to start a claim.

You can speak to one of our advisers for any questions you may have about the time limit to start a claim and whether you could be able to do so outside the usual time limit.

Most common car accident injuries involving children

In terms of children aged 15 or under, there were 39 child deaths due to road traffic accidents in 2019. Fatalities were mainly pedestrians (18 deaths), cyclists (10 deaths) and car passengers (8 deaths).

Minor injuries could range from cuts and grazes, psychological trauma such as PTSD, bruising and whiplash. More serious injuries could include severe cuts, burns, fractures, broken bones, head trauma and internal injuries.

Whatever injuries your child has suffered, you could be able to claim accident compensation on their behalf. To learn more, please read on or get in touch today for free legal advice.

Car accident involving children compensation, how long does it take?

Although road traffic accident involving children claims process is slightly different, it doesn’t affect the time it takes for the claim to be final. The details surrounding your case determine how long it could take to get the car crash involving children compensation payouts the claimant deserves.

What Is The Average Settlement For A Child In A Car Accident?

You may want to know the average settlement for a child in a car accident. However, knowing average settlements may not be particularly helpful for you or your child. This is because compensation is awarded on a case-by-case basis. Various factors of each claim will affect how much is awarded. For example, some claimants recover the financial losses caused by their injuries under special damages.

If the claim made on behalf of your child is successful, they will be awarded general damages. This compensates them for the physical pain and mental suffering caused by their injuries.

To help when valuing personal injury claims, legal professionals can refer to the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG). This document provides a list of guideline compensation brackets for various injuries.

In our table below, we list a few examples of injuries from the 16th edition of the JCG. It is only to be used as a guide.

Reason for compensation Typical compensation amount Comments
Very Severe Brain Injury £282,010 to £403,990 The extent of the victims physical limitations, life expectancy and degree of insight will determine the level of compensation awarded. The maximum compensation payout will usually depend on there existing hardly any (if any) language or basic communication and also considered would be if the victim display any awareness of their environment.
Moderate Brain Injury (iii) £43,060 to £90,720 Injuries that have affected the mental capability which might include loss of motor function and/ or a personality change.
Minor Brain Injury £2,210 to £12,770

Minimal brain damage but compensation can vary due to factors such as on-going headaches, other on-going symptoms, recovery time, severity of initial injury etc.
Severe Back Injury £91,090 to £160,980 The most severe injuries, with damage to the nerve roots and spinal cord.
Moderate Back Injury (i) £27,760 to £38,780 Permanent injury to the back which will mean ongoing long term back pain.
Chest Injury (b) £65,740 to £100,670 A traumatic injury that has had an effect on the heart or lungs. Continuing pain and suffering and permanent damage. Heart or lung function may be impaired.
Chest Injury (c) £31,310 to £54,830 A less severe injury to the chest, but the victim might have minor permanent tissue damage.
Severe Shoulder Injury £19,200 to £48,030 Serious shoulder injuries which may also be associated with neck injuries. This could involve a brachial plexus injury and leave the person with a severe level of disability.
Moderate Shoulder Injury £7,890 to £12,770 Pain in the arm giving limited arm movement.
Moderate Neck Injury (i) £24,990 to £38,490 Fractures and dislocations that cause severe symptoms and could lead to spinal fusion.

If you would like to find out what could be awarded for a child car accident, get in touch with an advisor from our team.

Special Damages In Claim For A Child Injured In A Car Accident

If your child was injured in a car accident, you may also be able to claim special damages on their behalf. This head of claim relates to any financial harm or monetary losses caused by their injuries. You’ll be required to provide evidence of any losses or expenses you wish to include in your child’s car accident claim.

Examples of special damages that might be included in a road traffic accident claim include:

  • Care costs – if your child is injured, you may require a carer to look after them whilst you are in work. 
  • Prescription fees – you may have to pay for your child’s medication, or for any over-the-counter pain relief for your child.
  • Travel expenses – for example, if you have to pay for taxis for yourself and your child to travel to and from hospital or GP appointments relating to their injury. 
  • Loss of earnings – you may have been required to take time off work to care for your child and their injuries.

Contact our advisors today to receive a free valuation for your child’s personal injury claim. They can also offer you free advice.

No Win No Fee car accident involving children claims

Our panel of specialist solicitors always handle claims on a No Win No Fee basis. So, unless your claim is a success, there are no additional solicitor costs for you.

Therefore, there’s no financial risk in the claims process as there aren’t surprise legal bills or upfront fees. We only charge if we win your case, with the payment being a set percentage of the compensation. With No Win No Fee claims, what do you have to lose?

Call for free advice and to start a claim

If your child has been injured after being involved in a car accident and wants to claim accident compensation on their behalf or have any questions, all you need to do is call us on 0800 073 8804.

Our team will be more than happy to help you in any way possible. They can talk you through the claiming process, so you can better understand how to begin.

We are friendly and very approachable and will be empathetic to your situation. And we will fight your corner and do all we can to get the maximum compensation you deserve.

Useful Links

Road accident statistics for Great Britain

This is the government site for road accidents and safety statistics which you may find interesting.

Road Traffic Act 1988

This is the legislation for the Road Traffic Act 1988.

Government aims to reduce child accidents

This is the government’s report of reducing accidents to children/young people at home or on the roads.

More information on car injury claims

This is a link to a guide about general car accident claims that may be useful to you.

Guide on passenger car accident claims

Again, this links one of our guides about claiming as a passenger in a car accident. So, it could be particularly helpful if claiming on behalf of a child in an accident.

Whiplash Claims Compensation Calculator

Check out our whiplash injury compensation claims calculator. If you have any questions on whiplash compensation amounts for your child’s whiplash claim, contact us today.

We also have some other guides on car accident claims that you may find useful:

Thanks for reading our guide on how to claim child car accident compensation. Please get in touch if you have any further questions about child car accident claims.

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    Meet The Team

    • Patrick Mallon

      Patrick is a Grade A solicitor having qualified in 2005. He's an an expert in accident at work and public liability claims and is currently our head of the EL/PL department. Get in touch today for free to see how we can help you.

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