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What are the Legal Rights When a Child Is Injured or Dies at an Indiana Day Care Center?

By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network


In Indiana and other States, parents rely on day care centers to provide for a safe educational environment for children while the parents fulfill work commitments and other obligations. In most day care centers, the child is cared for in an environment that is well maintained. Furthermore, in most day care centers, the child is properly supervised and monitored during the day. Unfortunately, there are some day care centers out there that cut corners, fail to hire adequate staff, fail to maintain the facility in proper repair, and otherwise fail to follow State regulations as to licensing, training, staff to child ratios, and other matters. While it is not realistic that every single incident of an injury will be avoided by following rules and having proper staffing, many such injuries can be avoided. This is especially true for serious injuries and incidents that lead to the unfortunate and tragic death of a child enrolled in a day care center. When a child suffers injuries or dies as a result of day care center negligence, neglect, and / or abuse, a legal case can be pursued if four elements can be established as follows:

1. Duty;
2. Breach of Duty;
3. Causation; and
4. Damages.

A day care center has a duty to properly and timely provide supervision of a child including supervision during nap time. It is vital that the child is properly positioned and monitored. Positional Asphyxia is one such risk. In the day care center, Positional Ashyxia occurs when an infant’s position prevents them from breathing adequately.

The legal elements are referenced above. In addition to the legal elements of a case, a Child Injury Lawyer will also evaluate an additional factor when considering legal representation in a day care center case involving injuries or death to a child. This additional factor, among others, is the availability of insurance, assets, and / or sources of payment for a potential settlement and / or judgment of the case.

One such case of Positional Asphyxia was reported in Warsaw, Indiana. The Journal Gazette reported that an 18 month old child enrolled in an unlicensed day care center died as a result of Positional Asphyxia. The child had been partially strapped in a car seat during the day. A criminal investigation resulted from the death and the operator of the unlicensed day care center was arrested for the incident. See Felony Charge Filed Against Operator Regarding Death of 18 Month Old Child.

The book titled – The ABCs of Child Injury – Legal Rights of the Injured Child – What Every Parent Should Know – has chapters on Day Care Center Injuries, School Injuries, Playground Injuries, Child Abuse and Neglect, and other topics. You can get this book for free at The ABCs of Child Injury.

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