Many parents have to leave their young children at daycares these days because of the necessities of the working world, among other things.
Daycares are providers of essential care for children. Daycares are also not cheap. In paying daycares, parents and families expect their children will be taken care of with a high level of care. But, what happens when the daycare does not care for the children and instead hurts or kills the child? What happens when the dream of a quality daycare turns into a nightmare?
Statistics collected by the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control indicate that more than 4.2 million nonfatal injuries at daycares per year are recorded for children ages one to four. It is estimated that these injuries costs over $16 billion dollars in lifetime medical expenses.
One of the most recent tragic stories of daycare disasters comes out of Iowa. A 3-year-old Iowa girl died from injuries allegedly sustained when her daycare provider threw her to the ground for not removing her coat, police claim. Police allege that the head of the daycare, Rochelle Sapp, admitted to throwing the girl to the ground when they re-interviewed the caretaker about the girl’s death. While the daycare provider likely will be charged with murder or manslaughter once the autopsy results come back, a criminal charge can only go so far in repairing a broken family. This is especially true when that family has spent their hard earned money on paying a daycare to care for their child.
Daycares promise to watch the children that come to them and promise to care for them. In return for these promises, they reap large amounts of money from the parents of the children. Therefore, it is only fair that when the daycare injures or kills a child, they should not only have to pay back those fees, but also pay for the injuries caused to the children and emotional injuries caused to the family in case of a death. Some lawsuits have even resulted in million dollar judgments for families.
Liability can arise for more than just some kind of direct act by a daycare provider. Daycares can also be liable for dangerous conditions of the actual daycare center (i.e. playgrounds, sharp objects, dysfunctional structures, objects in the way, etc.). Liability can also arise from unsanitary conditions that cause illnesses and vicious infections to children.
Many daycare providers, especially licensed daycares, have insurance carriers that cover for these situations and thus insure that injured children and families are not left out to dry in paying for medical bills and expenses by themselves.
Due to various theories of liability and the law in the area, if a child is harmed in any way at a daycare, including death, it is important to talk to a lawyer to see what options you may have and to thoroughly investigate the case. There is no reason a nightmare caused by a daycare should continue any longer than it has to. Luckily, skilled lawyers can put an end to the nightmare.