SC School Injuries & Abuse: Answers to Questions Regarding LiabilityWritten by Kenneth Berger
As a Columbia, SC child injury lawyer, I’m often asked “What happens if my child is injured at school?” In South Carolina, if your child suffers an injury while in the care of public school, the teacher, school, and possibly the district, may all be liable for your child’s harm.
Each day, South Carolina children are injured by other students. When this happens, the school will most likely be found liable if it was grossly negligent in its supervision of your child or the aggressor. Gross negligence has been defined many different ways, including the failure to exercise even slight care. For example, if two students are in gym class, and the teacher leaves them unsupervised, allowing one student to attack another, a judge could conclude that the teacher and school were grossly negligent. Furthermore, if the district was negligent in its hiring of the gym teacher, then the dist may also be found at fault.
Sadly, children often suffer harm not only at the hands of fellow students, but also their teachers. As we have all heard on the news, sexual predators at times find their way into schools, inflicting irreversible and unspeakable harm upon our most vulnerable. When these travesties occur, the school and district must often answer for the reprehensible acts of their employee. Schools, along with their insurance companies, may not escape liability where background checks and warning signs could have alerted the employer that they had a predator on staff.
South Carolina law recognizes that in addition to physical damage, childhood injuries often result in mental anguish, lost enjoyment of life, and great suffering. For this reason, our law allows a child and his or her family to recover for these damages in addition to any economic losses.
While children are often our favorite clients, their stories are often the most heart wrenching. We hope your family never needs us for a child injury case, but when called upon, we are here.
As a South Carolina Child Injury Attorney, I would be honored to answer any questions you may have regarding our state’s accident and school liability laws.