The last thing any parent wants to hear is that their child was injured at daycare. Parents that send their kids to daycare work hard to provide for their families. The hardest thing for any parent to do is trust someone else with their kids.
When children are injured at daycare, parents are suddenly forced to deal with a lot of stress and decisions that impact their families. Such as, “Do I take my child out of the daycare?” Or “is it okay to leave them in?” “What are the steps I need to take to make sure that the daycare is held accountable?” “Why did this happen?” “Could this have been prevented by the daycare?”
We believe parents have a right to know, which is why I wrote this article to help provide families with information so that they can make great decisions after their child has been injured at a Dallas daycare. Our Texas daycare injury lawyer has gathered the most frequently asked questions parents have asked us and answered them below.
What Steps Should I Take When My Child Was Injured at Daycare?
- The first step you will always want to take is to seek medical attention. You can learn more about it by reading below.
- Next, you will want to ask the daycare facility for an incident report.
- You’ll want to investigate the daycare facility, take pictures and get as much information as possible from reviews and other members of that facility.
- If the daycare facility has not already done so, you’ll also want to report the injury to the Department of Family Protective Services so that the State can conduct its own investigation.
- You’ll want to read as much free information as you can, which we are happy to provide. We have a FREE consumer guide that will guide you in more detail through all of these steps. Check it out: A Five-Step Guide For Parents Dealing With A Daycare Injury. We will even mail it to your home free of charge.
Why Is It Important To Have an Incident Report After a Daycare Injury?
Daycare centers are required to notify the State of Texas of all reported incidents and injuries that happened to children while at daycare. Each daycare should have a policy in place for creating an incident report for all injuries, whether minor or serious. We all know that small things add up over time. If teachers and daycare providers are not held accountable for all safety violations that could have harmed a child, then it’s going to continue to happen and will likely lead to a very serious injury to another child down the line.
This is why it’s important that parents demand that an incident report is done any time they’re notified that their child was involved in an incident or had an injury while at daycare. If the daycare does not want to document what happened, you will want to read "Lessons Learned About Making Incident Reports." Unfortunately, we have seen many daycare attempts to cover up or hide what actually happened to an injured child at daycare. So, make sure to request that all evidence is saved, including videos and photos.
Why Does the State of Texas Get Involved With Daycare Injuries?
One of the first calls each parent will be receiving after being notified that their child was injured at daycare will be from an investigator from the Texas Department of Family Protective Services (DFPS.) Do not be alarmed, the State of Texas requires all daycare injuries to be investigated and compiled into a report. An investigator will work with your family to schedule a time to visit with you and the injured child. The investigator will also make an appointment to go to the daycare facility to speak with all witnesses, look at the security footage (if any), and inspect the facility.
Don't be alarmed if the DFPS Shows up at your house, they are there to help you with the investigation. Read more about it by following the link provided, Why Is The Department of Family and Protective Services Showing Up At Your House?
The Most Important Step Is Medical Treatment After Finding Out About the Injury at Daycare
Because many children in daycare cannot talk or easily explain what happened to them, it is important to take your child to a hospital or urgent care center to get evaluated for any serious injuries. Many permanent or life-threatening injuries are not visible if you were to just look at your child. Such as a brain injury, internal organ damage, and broken bones. Then, you will want to follow up with a pediatrician, who can evaluate your child and determine what future treatment is needed. A pediatrician will also be able to refer you to specialists if your child’s injury requires them to such.
Who Will Pay For My Child's Daycare Injury Medical Bills?
If the injury that your child suffered at daycare resulted in medical treatment, you’re probably getting bills in the mail. That can be an overwhelming feeling. The best way to handle medical bills is to submit them to your health insurance. Until the case is resolved, the daycare and their insurance company will not pay the medical bills as your child receives treatment. So, in order to keep the bills from going into collections and affecting your credit score, you should use your health insurance to get the bills paid. In the event that the daycare is held responsible, one of the claims is for reimbursement of all medical expenses paid or still owed to date. This would include any out-of-pocket expenses and co-pays that you may have while your child is being treated.
Should I Take My Child Out of the Daycare or Keep Them There After an Injury?
We believe that each parent should make the best decision for their child as well as their family. This applies to the decision of whether to leave your child in the same daycare after they were injured as a result of the daycare's negligence. Some parents will want to leave their children in, and that’s fine. Other parents will want to determine what’s best and will want to look at a variety of factors. Check out our article, "What Do You Do With Your Kid After One Of Them Is Injured At Daycare?" to help with your decision. At the end of the day, the important thing is to make sure that the daycare learns how this could have been prevented and make it right for the family so that it doesn’t happen again to another child.
If you decide that taking your child out of the daycare is best, check out our FREE consumer guide, 11 Tips For Parents Searching For A Safe Daycare, for guidance.
What Are My Rights as a Parent Dealing With a Daycare Injury?
If your child was injured while at daycare and it could have been prevented, you have the right to seek compensation for what was taken from your child (in the form of their injury and quality of life) and from your family (medical bills and lost wages of the parents.) If your child’s injury is serious, it may require extensive medical treatment in the future and a huge time commitment from family members to care for the child. Also, if you decide to take your kid (or kids) out of the daycare and move them to another one you will incur additional expenses and will want to get reimbursed for those as well because you will not have had to move your children if the daycare kept their promise to keep your child safe. Daycare facilities are required to have insurance. Thus, we believe that the family should not be left paying for the consequences of the daycare’s negligent actions.
What Is a Daycare Negligence Lawsuit?
A lawsuit against a daycare facility in Texas serves two purposes. The first is to ensure that type of conduct from the daycare facility never happens again to protect any children from getting injured in the same manner by the teacher of a facility. Preventing the daycare from causing the same mistake twice is only going to be possible if a parent holds the daycare responsible for their child’s injuries.
The daycare must have done something negligent or said differently, the daycare must have violated a daycare safety rule, and had that safety rule been followed it would have more likely than not prevented what happened to your child.
The injury must have been prevented had the employees paid better attention or followed the safety rules in order to pursue a daycare negligence lawsuit. You will need to prove the daycare neglected its obligations as an employee or violated a safety rule causing an injury to your child.
Check out our article which discusses in more detail What Your Rights Are As A Parent Dealing With A Daycare Negligence Lawsuit.