If your child gets hurt in a car accident, your first thought will almost certainly be to get the best medical care for them – always get children checked out after a car wreck. You may not even notice that they’ve been hurt or how badly they’ve been hurt until a paramedic or doctor examines them.
The next priority should be contacting your Myrtle Beach auto accident attorney. If your child has been hurt, you need to focus all your energy on your child’s health – physical and psychological. The last thing your family needs is for you to be stressed about being taken advantage of by adjusters or taking on the tedious process of attempting to build a personal injury case, so we will take care of the lawsuit and let you take care of your child.
Let Your Car Wreck Attorney Negotiate with The Insurance Company
Insurance companies will try to settle low and fast – they know they can protect their profits by getting you to agree to their first offer before you speak to an attorney. They also know that a jury is more likely to sympathize with a child victim if the case goes to trial, and any potential verdict will be higher if you retain an attorney. So, you can expect a very friendly-sounding adjuster to contact you quickly.
Don’t talk to them. Period. Let us handle the adjuster. Once we have investigated your child’s accident and gathered the evidence we need to prove liability and damages, we will negotiate with the adjuster to get a full and fair settlement offer for your child. If insurance doesn’t pay, we will take your child’s case to court to force the insurance company to compensate your child for their injuries.
How Can I Protect My Child’s Money?
If we reach an acceptable settlement, you may find yourself dealing with another parental concern: Do I really want my child to have a big pile of money? What if they run off to Vegas and blow it all on their 18th birthday?
There is no need to worry about that – South Carolina law helps parents protect their children from themselves when they receive large settlements.
First, if your child receives a settlement of $25,000 or more, it will have to be approved by a state Circuit Court judge.
Any money that is not spent on medical bills or other expenses directly related to the accident will not be available to the child until they reach adulthood.
There are two options for protecting your child’s settlement money:
- Have the court appoint a conservator. During a separate proceeding, the Probate Court will appoint a conservator who will usually deposit the money in an interest-bearing account. If you qualify, you can be the conservator. The conservator is required to get a probate bond, which is an insurance policy that will pay the child if the conservator steals or mismanages the money. When your child turns 18, the conservator must hand over the rest of the money.
- Set up a structured annuity. Rather than have the settlement money paid to your child in a single payment when they turn 18 or 25, you can choose when your child receives payments and how much each payment is for.
Your child cannot file a personal injury lawsuit on their own after an auto accident – they are relying on you to file one for them. We can help you hold the at-fault driver responsible and force their insurance company to compensate your child for their injuries by recovering damages for medical bills, future medical costs, pain and suffering, psychological trauma and any other damages that were caused by the accident.