Most Common Child Injury Cases

Child Injury Attorney

We believe children deserve to grow up in a safe environment, which gives them the freedom to grow and develop to their fullest potential. But sometimes accidents happen. Child injury claims exist to seek justice and to provide for a safer world for all of our children. Here are three of the most common types of injury cases we see in our office.

School Injuries

One category of child injury claims we have brought on behalf of children and their parents are claims against a school for injuries by the child. According to the Iowa Supreme Court, a school acts in the role of a parent while children are present in school. Stepping into the shoes of a parent, the school is then legally responsible for the care and well-being of the children during that time. While a school is not required to prevent every child injury, the school must take the same action that a reasonably prudent parent would. As a child injury attorney, I represent families whose children have been significantly injured because of school negligence.

Lead Poisoning

Unfortunately, another common child injury claim is for environmental exposure to a dangerous chemical such as lead. Lead poisoning is a very common child injury claim – and Ann Brown has represented multiple children who have suffered permanent injuries as a result of lead poisoning.

Iowa has a higher prevalence of lead poisoning than the national average, according to a CDC report, due in large part to a greater number of homes built in the mid 1900’s, when lead was used in paint. Children of families who buy or rent these homes may be exposed to lead through breathing or ingesting particles of that paint. Parents who rent such a home and whose children become lead poisoned may not realize they have a case, but we are here to help them navigate that process and recover damages that can help their child throughout their life.

Car Accidents

Car accidents are a common type of case we see, especially among teenagers. Insurance companies will often try to take a statement from an injured child or their parent, before they have had a chance to speak with a child injury attorney. We can help you deal with insurance companies, file a lawsuit and navigate the additional court process that is required in order to settle a child’s claim for any settlements over $25,000.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has identified the following as the most common types of child injuries: suffocation, drowning, poisoning, burns and falls. If a child suffered one of these injuries because of the fault of another person or because someone failed to adequately supervise the child, a parent should consider speaking with a child injury attorney to discuss compensation for their child and holding responsible parties accountable to prevent future harm to other children.

Child injury claims can be factually, legally and emotionally complicated. We stand with our clients and help them through this incredibly difficult time because we believe all children deserve justice and a bright tomorrow.

If you need a lawyer to represent your child after an injury, please call us for a free consultation at (319) 826-2250 or fill out our contact form.

The Water Crisis in Flint and Why We Must do More to Protect Our Children from Lead Poisoning

While many Iowan's likely have followed the story of the lead-tainted water in Flint, most people probably think that lead poisoning is an isolated problem only impacting the children of Flint. The truth, however, is that Iowa's children are lead poisoned at a higher rate than the national average and the failures in Flint, highlight a widespread problem that many people know nothing about, but that is entirely preventable. 

Flint, Michigan is a city with a population under 100,000 where over 41% live below the poverty line.  In 2015, multiple studies found that Flint's water supply was contaminated with lead as a result of various cost-saving measures previously taken by the City and that incidents of lead poisoning in Flint had increased dramatically. The investigation into the contaminated water found negligence and even criminal conduct on behalf of a number of public employees and has resulted in numerous lawsuits and prosecutions. The disaster in Flint has called attention to a nationwide health crisis—childhood lead poisoning—that is often overlooked because most of the children impacted are poor.

Lead poisoning is particularly devastating because it causes permanent brain damage in young children. It is heartbreaking that a poisoning that a child suffers at the age of one or two can impact that child for the rest of their lives. I have represented children who suffered such severe brain damage that they will never be able to live independently. Particularly scary is that children often display no visible symptoms of lead poisoning.

Unlike Flint, most Iowa children who are poisoned are exposed to lead paint and not contaminated water.  Homes built before 1950 likely contain lead-based paint. While many impoverished children live in homes built before 1950, lead poisoning is not unavoidable—it is completely preventable. Lead paint that is kept in good condition is usually not a hazard to small children, who become poisoned through paint chips and paint dust. So, who is responsible and who is failing these children? In most cases, it is negligent landlords.

While many Iowa parents do not know about lead poisoning, most Iowa landlords do. Landlords are required to provide certain information to tenants regarding the risk of lead poisoning.  Most landlords know that chipping and peeling paint causes childhood lead poisoning. Additionally, the law requires that landlords keep their properties in a safe condition, including keeping their properties free from lead hazards. Some cities, like Cedar Rapids and Waterloo, even have specific provisions in the City Code that require landlords to keep their properties lead safe. 

So why are Iowa's children still becoming lead poisoned at such a high rate? One big reason is that landlords are not doing their jobs. This failure often goes undetected because many of the families and children impacted by lead poisoning are poor. But the injustice of robbing a child of his or her potential by simply failing to keep a property in good repair is no less great for poor children. If the water crisis in Flint has taught us anything, it is that every child deserves to grow up healthy and that the adults who fail those children should be held accountable.  

The biggest tragedy to me having supervised the treatment of over 25,000 lead poisoned children is the fact that the child’s life is gone. It is wrecked forever, as early as one or two years of age and there’s no recovery.
— Dr. John Rosen

If your child has been lead poisoned and you would like more information about holding your landlord accountable, call us at (319) 826-2250.