Today, we're going to discuss an issue many parents unfortunately face in Texas – child abandonment in daycare vehicles. Attorney Russell Button will inform you of your legal options if it happens to your child.

First, how do these abandonment incidents even happen? In many of the cases we’ve handled, caregivers do not thoroughly check the vehicles to ensure all children have gotten off. Though they’re required by Texas Daycare licensing rules to double check that all children are accounted for, many skip that step and assume the kids are out of the vehicle. This poses serious danger for the kids who are left behind, especially when Texas faces extreme weather, primarily hot days. Now, if this happened to your child, you do have legal options to hold the daycare accountable and get a potential settlement for your child.

Now, I want to go over what steps to take if your child is left alone in a daycare vehicle.

First and foremost, get your child medical care: Even if it seems like your child might not be injured, it’s important to seek medical care in case anything has happened to your child while unsupervised in the vehicle. Second, report the incident to the state and proper authorities. It’s essential that the state is notified of this incident, as abandoning a child in a daycare vehicle is a clear violation of Texas’s minimum standards. You’ll also want to report to local law enforcement, since leaving a child in a vehicle is a crime. Third, contact the daycare: Contact the daycare center upon learning of the situation. Get any details you can about what happened and what led to your child being left in the daycare van.

Daycares are required, by law, to provide parents with an incident report after something like this happens. Some daycares may have video footage of the incident. Try to get that if you’re able to. If the daycare is trying to cover it up, or you feel that they aren’t sharing enough details, be sure to note that. This may be important information to know if you pursue a claim against them. Fourth, record any details you may have about the incident. Note the time, date, and any relevant details surrounding your child being left in the van.

This can include:

  • how long your child was left for,
  • the weather conditions of that day,
  • and any unusual behavior your child has been displaying.

Preserve any communication with the daycare, as it may serve as crucial evidence. Fifth, seek legal counsel: Reach out to an attorney experienced in daycare negligence cases, like our team here at The Button Law Firm. They can provide guidance on the legal steps to take, assist in collecting evidence, and help you understand your rights.

It’s important to note that abandoning a child in a daycare vehicle is a serious breach of duty and can cause lasting harm to a child.

Once you’ve signed up with a daycare injury attorney, your attorney will gather all the necessary information about the incident. Then, your legal team will reach out to the daycare and their insurance company to ensure your child gets the recovery they need to move forward. If the daycare or their insurance company is being uncooperative, the case may need to move to court, where the outcome is determined by a judge or jury.

That’s why it’s essential that your legal team is experienced in these kinds of cases. Remember, as parents, you have legal avenues to pursue justice for your child. If your child was abandoned by their daycare in a vehicle, be sure to reach out to our team.

We’ve helped parents get through cases involving this exact incident. If you’re not quite ready to speak to a lawyer, we get it. That’s why we’ve created a free and helpful guide called 5 Steps to Take After a Daycare Injury. It’s linked below. Don’t hesitate to reach out. We’re here to keep you and your family moving forward.

Russell Button
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Dallas, Houston, and Midland Texas trial and personal injury lawyer dedicated to securing justice for clients.