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Child’s Duty to Exercise Care in Georgia – What Laws Apply to Children in Negligence Cases?

By Stephanie F. Brown, Attorney and David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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Often in personal injury cases involving children, the defendant will claim that the child was contributorily negligent and his recovery is barred or must be reduced. In Georgia, children must exercise such care as his mental and physical capacities allow him to exercise in the actual circumstances of the occasion.

The Georgia Supreme Court has held that children age six and under are not capable of contributory negligence. With regard to children between the ages of seven and fourteen, however, the question of whether the child was contributorily negligent is for the jury to decide. The child’s ability to be contributorily negligent when he is between the ages of seven and fourteen will depend on the particular child’s mental and physical capacity. Children over the age of fourteen, however, are presumed to be capable of realizing danger and of exercising the necessary caution to avoid danger. Children over fourteen, therefore, must exercise the same degree of care as an adult.

A Georgia personal injury attorney specializing in injuries to children can advise you about how your child’s conduct might bar or reduce any recovery received for his injuries.