Moffat & Co Solicitors

Moffat & Co Solicitors
Accident Compensation Claim Solicitors Scotland
PO Box 28287
Edinburgh
Scotland
EH9 2WU
Telephone:
0131 662 6988
Fax:
0131 667 8175

MASS Motor Accident Solicitors Society

Moffat & Co Solicitors Over 25 years of experience at your service

School Accident Claims

Is your school taking safety seriously on the playing fields?

It is well recognised that schoolchildren require a certain amount of daily exercise. The Government has laid out guidelines for schools, giving children the opportunity to exercise in play periods and lessons such as Physical Education. With the nation’s burgeoning obesity problem in the spotlight, it is important that children are taught the full potential of their bodies as well as their minds. However, PE and sports lessons are fraught with more potential danger than other lessons and parents need to be assured that their child’s school is taking these risks seriously.

Whether it is a chemistry lesson or a game of rugby, as a parent you are entitled to know that your child is being taught in a safe environment. PE lessons often involve special equipment such as trampolines, and sporting activities often involve large numbers of children in close physical contact.

Who is ultimately responsible?

The bottom line is that, whilst the child is in the care of the school, the school is responsible for their well being. This means that the school must ensure that there are the correct numbers of appropriately trained members of staff present and that all equipment is regularly checked and maintained. Sports teachers, in addition to being trained in the rules of sport, should be fully qualified first-aiders and have an awareness of the potential for injury. Where equipment is used, the school is responsible for ensuring that it is appropriate to the lesson and in full working order. Just as schools are advised to take out risk assessments for activities such as school trips, risk assessments should also be performed to ensure that the equipment is safe and being used properly.

Parents, too, have some responsibility. They should inform the school of any disabilities or conditions that may affect their child’s ability to carry out certain activities. This is best done in writing and with a copy kept by the parent, so that there can be no doubt that the information was forwarded.

What if the worst happens?

If a child suffers an injury during a PE lesson or sporting activity, the parents can act on their behalf to claim compensation. As with any personal injury claim, causation must be established. A solicitor will investigate to see whether or not all the safety considerations that should have been observed were in place. At the time of the accident, an entry should have been made in the school’s ‘accident book’ noting the details of the injury and treatment given. Parents may wish to take photographs to provide as evidence at a later date.

Parents are given three years from the child’s 18th birthday in which to launch a claim. This time period is given so that the long-term extent of any injuries can be determined. Injuries of a serious nature can hamper a child’s development and a variety of treatments may need to be considered.

While an adult can act on the child’s behalf as a ‘litigation friend’, the courts are very strict on awarding compensation, ensuring that it is used directly for the benefit of the child and no other purpose.

Anyone considering launching a personal injury claim on behalf of their child should first seek advice from a personal injury solicitor who works in this field. They will quickly be able to judge whether the case has any potential.

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Testimonials

Since contacting Stan I was continously informed of the development and progress of each step of my claim. Stan was persistent and patient throughout the whole process and reassured me he would win me the compensation I deserved - and he was true to his word. I am extremely happy with the outcome of my claim and this is all thanks to Stan.

Sarah

My case was dealt with personally by Stan Moffat and what a brilliant guy. His office contacted me personally by telephone at the start of my claim to explain who they were and what they would be doing for me. All through the case I was kept fully informed of all actions either by e-mail or by letter and reassured by Stan several times of any queries I had.

It is very seldom that a solicitor will take the time to speak personally at any time with you without getting run through secretaries etc. I commend this man for that as this was a very upsetting and important time for me and he did everything in his power to make this as easy and as swift as possible for me.

I highly recommend the service that this firm brings and the speed that they move at.

J McMahon

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