Tragically, many backover accidents involve children and are completely preventable. Families have been destroyed in a moment's inattention. Often, these accidents happen without warning in the child's own driveway, or they may happen in a parking lot. Older cars may not be equipped with rear-view cameras to capture the presence of a child between the ages of one and five standing or moving behind the car. If a backover collision was caused by the negligence of someone other than the child's parent, the Los Angeles car accident attorneys at Sharifi Firm may be able to help parents pursue damages for the injuries or wrongful death of their child.Bringing a Negligence Claim after a Backover Accident
To recover damages after a backover accident, a parent will have to prove the defendant's duty of care to the child, a breach of duty, causation, and damages. Failing to check a blind spot is a breach of a driver's duty to use due care. In order to recover damages, a parent must establish each of these elements by a preponderance of the evidence.
It is not uncommon for one or both parents to partially blame themselves after an accident of this kind. In California, a parent's negligence is not generally imputed to the child in a child's action for general damages arising out of a personal injury, although it may be relevant to determining other people's responsibility for the injuries. However, when a child's lawsuit tries to recover special damages (economic damages) for medical expenses that the parents paid for the child, the defendant can raise the argument of comparative negligence.
If a parent sues for a child's wrongful death, the parent's comparative negligence can result in a reduction of the parent's recovery in proportion to his or her degree of fault. California follows the doctrine of "pure comparative negligence," which means that a plaintiff can be found partly responsible for an accident to any extent and still recover damages that are proportionate to the defendant’s responsibility. It is the burden of the defendant to show that the plaintiff was comparatively negligent.
In a lawsuit based on the wrongful death of a child, the jury will need to determine how much money would reasonably compensate the parent for the child's death. The jury will divide the damages into economic and noneconomic damages. The plaintiff can potentially ask for the financial support that the child would have contributed during his or her life expectancy or the life expectancy of the parent, whichever is shorter, the loss of benefits that would have been received from the child, funeral and burial expenses, and the reasonable value of the household services that the child would have provided. The plaintiff can also seek damages for the loss of the child's love, companionship, comfort, care, affection, and society. The present cash value of the child's support and education is deducted from the damages.Discuss Your Car Crash Case with a Los Angeles Attorney
If your child is killed or suffers injuries in a backover accident, you should consult the Los Angeles motor vehicle collision lawyers at Sharifi Firm. We have significant experience in cases involving child victims. Sharifi Firm also represents injured individuals in San Bernardino, Rancho Cucamonga, Temecula, and Riverside, among other Southern California cities. Contact us at 1-866-422-7222 or via our online form for a free consultation.