Two children, ages three and eight, remain in critical condition following a major crash with an 18-wheeler on the Katy Freeway. The children were riding in a Dodge pickup truck whose driver failed to control their speed; the pickup slammed into a disabled car on the freeway in the early morning hours. The pickup was then thrown across several lanes of traffic, hitting an 18-wheeler and trapping its driver inside of the cab.
Minor Children as Personal Injury Plaintiffs
If a minor is injured due to the fault of another, he or she generally has the same legal rights to recover for their injuries as an adult. However, since unemancipated minors are not legally allowed to enter into contracts in Texas, they cannot hire an attorney and must have a guardian or “next friend” do so on their behalf.
If a minor is injured, he or she can recover financial compensation for injuries, disability, pain and suffering, loss of income in the future, disfigurement, “general damages,” and all future damages they are entitled to receive when they become an adult. Typically, minors are not able to recover past medical bills because their parents actually owe those bills. Same with lost income. Even if a minor is working and earning an income, the funds legally belong to the parent; therefore, past lost income incurred while the injured person is a minor is a claim that legally belongs to the parent.
The general deadline to file a personal injury lawsuit in Texas is two years from the date of the incident causing the injury (Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code §16.003). The minor’s statute of limitations begins to run when they turn 18 years of age (or become an adult if emancipated at an earlier date).
Generally speaking, a minor’s legal guardians have the authority to represent him in legal proceedings. However, Texas Rule of Civil Procedure 44 allows minors who do not have a legal guardian to be represented by a “next friend” in court proceedings.
Houston 18-Wheeler Crash Lawyers
If your minor child was injured in a truck accident in Texas or elsewhere, we will handle your case with compassion and skill. Our Texas 18-Wheeler Crash Lawyers have successfully represented minors and adults in trucking injury claims across Texas and throughout the country. We welcome the opportunity to visit with you about the facts of your case, so contact us today.