The COVID-19 pandemic has posed endless challenges across the globe. It has complicated the lives of many professionals that have switched to a remote working environment. While many have embraced remote working, others have experienced huge difficulties balancing home working with the responsibilities of parenting. Now, in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), months of online learning have come to an end. Thousands of students must now head back to the classroom.
What would happen if a minor child or infant under the age of 18 were to be suddenly the victim of a serious injury? Our latest blog guides you through what happens next. And remember, should anything unfortunate happen, infant settlements are best handled by personal injury professionals like De Rose Lawyers.
Defining a “party under disability” during infant settlements
A “party under disability” is anyone considered to not have the legal capacity to instruct their own legal counsel. This includes children under the age of 18. Additionally, it includes those who lack the capacity to make sound legal decisions due to an injury or accident.
Should your child experience a serious injury, a parent or legal guardian will have the responsibility of directing legal counsel in the event you seek a cash settlement. The parent/guardian will not receive a financial settlement in such cases, but instead, will be working on behalf of their child in the legal proceedings.
In some instances, a party under a disability could include people that have suffered traumatic brain injuries and can no longer make sound legal decisions. Serious injury could, unfortunately, mean a different quality of life. Serious accidents have life-altering consequences but a financial settlement acts as a remedying factor.
The role of litigation guardians in infant settlements
There are special procedural requirements for any sort of legal proceedings undertaken on behalf of minors under 18. Ultimately, a parent or guardian, otherwise known as a litigation guardian, takes on the decision-making role of the child.
A party under a disability will have their litigation guardian make any and all-important legal decisions on their behalf. They take on complete authority and responsibility during infant settlements while working alongside legal teams; ultimately being the final decision maker for the minor. A parent or close guardian of the party under a disability is best suited to this role.
Infant settlements present complicated court approval procedures
Infant settlements are unique in that they require court approval. The funds that are awarded are not made available to the litigation guardian. Alternatively, they are made available once the minor turns 18. The funds from the settlement are held back by the courts and can only be released under a special circumstance. This typically means that if the child requires special care or assistance, the funds can be released to pay for such measures.
Proposed settlements have to go through what is called a “motion for court approval” before any funds are paid out. Legal counsel files an affidavit that supports the reasoning behind the settlement along with the lawyer’s position in the settlement. The process is long and complicated but creates an extensive paper trail of facts and records along with the proposed settlement. In some instances, the settlement can be objected to and challenged while being subject to review and recommendations. Throughout the process, the court will work to maintain the best interests of the child and not the other parties involved.
De Rose Lawyers can handle the most complicated infant/minor settlements
De Rose Lawyers is highly experienced in handling complicated infant settlements across the GTA. Should your child experience any sort of serious personal injury, it is your right to seek a settlement that can improve their extended future and quality of life.
You aren’t alone during these complicated times. Balancing a full-time career and childcare has become an increasingly complicated matter. In the unfortunate event your child is injured, the following legal proceedings are highly complicated and require the experience of the personal injury professionals at De Rose Lawyers. For a consultation about your options and next steps, call us at 1-855-337-6731 today.