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Laws about whether or not you can file a lawsuit against a school vary from state to state. In California you certainly can, but first you must file a Notice of Claim within six months of the date of injury. School districts are government entities and as such are protected by what is known as “sovereign immunity.” However, exceptions can be made when an injury on school property was due to negligence and could have been prevented.
Families of two of the students injured at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting on Feb. 14 are filing several lawsuits against school and law enforcement agencies. Personal injury attorneys representing the students and their parents claim that law enforcement, Broward County and Broward County Public Schools were negligent in their duties to protect students from the gunman.
Anthony Borges and Kyle Laman, 15, spent weeks in the hospital recovering from gunshot wounds after a former student, 19, opened fire at the school and killed 17 students and teachers with an assault rifle.
Borges’ personal injury lawyer wrote, “The failure of Broward County Public Schools and of the Principal and School Resource Officer to adequately protect students, and in particular our client, from life-threatening harm were unreasonable, callous and negligent. Such action or inaction led to the personal injuries sustained by my client.”
Our own Sacramento and Roseville communities aren’t immune to the possibility of gun violence in schools. The month of February saw a number of high school lockdowns in Granite Bay, Elk Grove, Roseville and Sacramento. Thankfully, these investigations only revealed false alarms and empty threats. Oakmont High School in Roseville faced a more serious challenge when a gun actually was brought to campus by a student. The gun was found and two arrests were made without anyone getting getting injured on school property.
Generally speaking, schools are required to provide a safe environment for students, but they can’t guarantee a child’s safety. They must take reasonable steps to protect you child from personal injury at school, such as:
In most personal injury cases, it comes down to a question of negligence. If school officials did something (or failed to do something) that made the premises unsafe, the school may be liable. Here are some examples of school liability for student injury:
Anthony Borges (mentioned above) was shot five times while heroically closing and locking a classroom door to protect the students inside. He then saved his own life by applying a tourniquet, which he had learned to do in Boy Scouts.
As an active supporter of The Boy Scouts of America, I strongly encourage you to make sure that your kids get some emergency first-aid training. Other than Scouts, there are a number of organizations that offer low-cost training, and the Red Cross is always a good place to start.
Children’s personal injury claims against schools, police departments, and other government entities must follow a strict process. Failure to follow the process and meet the deadlines mean that you could miss your chance at getting the compensation you deserve. If your child sustained a personal injury at school, make sure to hire an experienced personal injury attorney who has won cases against state or local government agencies.
If you’re wondering how to sue a school because your child was injured while under the care and supervision of the school district and it’s staff, the answer — like most areas of negligence law — is somewhat complicated. As experienced personal injury lawyers who are currently handling a Manteca school negligence case, we’ll explain […]
Trucking accidents, like any vehicular accident, are extremely delicate situations. If you or someone you know were involved in a trucking accident, you must hire an experienced Sacramento truck accident lawyer to help ensure a successful outcome. Unfortunately, big rig accidents are especially delicate because they often involve serious injuries and even fatalities. On top […]
From the press release issued August 22, 2019: Disabled student neglected by teacher’s aide suffers injuries, files claims against San Joaquin Board of Education and Manteca Unified School District MANTECA – Veronica Villalobos, the mother of 12-year-old Priscilla Villalobos, has filed claims against the San Joaquin Board of Education and Manteca Unified School District in […]