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Negligent Supervision of Your Child: Do You Have a Case?

Ill Child
With the current busy nature of parental responsibility, most parents have to rely on other parties to provide care for their children at some point during the day. This includes teachers, daycare providers, coaches, and so on. When you have others who are responsible for your child at any point, the person has to provide adequate supervision.
Sometimes, however, accidents will happen when your child is under the supervision of another person. As you investigate the situation, you may find the child did not have adequate supervision. Depending on the injury and the expenses associated with it, you may have a case for negligent supervision. Here are some things you need to know.
What Is Negligent Supervision?
Negligent supervision occurs when the person who has the responsibility to supervise your child does not take care to do so. Although negligent supervision is more common in cases involving children, it also applies to care providers of the elderly or disabled.
One example of negligent supervision is a childcare provider or lifeguard not watching a child while he or she is in a swimming pool and the child is hurt. Another example is babysitter looking at her phone while a child is hurt playing on the monkey bars in the park.
When an adult is in charge of a child, he or she can be held liable for injuries which occur on his or her time if you can prove negligence.
How Do You Prove a Case of Negligent Supervision?
To prove your claim, your attorney will have to base it on the elements of negligence. This simply means you have to prove the person who was negligent had a duty to care for your child and breached the duty, resulting in an injury.
Duty of Care
The duty of care implies the person you put in charge of your child owed him or her a certain level of care. You and your attorney will need to prove said person accepted the role of responsibility of your child. In some cases, the duty of care is obvious due to the nature of the relationship to the child.
For instance, you can presume the teacher has the duty to care for your child without the official acceptance of responsibility because of the nature of the relationship and the capacity of the teacher's job. Once you establish a duty of care, you need to then show he or she breached the duty. This will vary with different cases.
Burden of Proof
You will have to provide solid proof the inadequate supervision of your child was the direct cause for the injuries. You do not have an automatic case of negligent supervision just because your child suffered an injury in the care of another person and should have had supervision. Your child could have been hurt in a number of ways despite who was in charge. Keep this in mind as you compile your evidence.
For instance, if your babysitter is walking with your child down the sidewalk and the child trips and trips in a crack in the sidewalk, resulting in a broken arm, you will not have a case of negligent supervision. The babysitter is not at fault for the crack in the sidewalk or for causing the injury.
You could argue he or she should have been watching where the child was walking, but it is arguable that he or she simply did not see it because it was not obviously noticeable. Therefore, the case is unlikely to end in your favor.
When you entrust your children to another responsible party, you have an expectation they will remain safe. If you think you have a case of negligent supervision, please contact the Law Offices of Phillip Garrison Wedgworth.