Who Can be Held Responsible for Child Window Fall Injuries?
About Child Window Fall Accidents and Injuries
Windows allow for natural light and air to flow through homes and buildings while providing an escape in event of an emergency like a fire. While they provide many benefits they are also a hidden hazard. Between 1990 and 2008 over 98,000 children were treated in emergency rooms across America for injuries caused in window falls. Children ages 0 to 4 account for 64.8% of the injuries while 3 year olds account for 14.4% of injuries. Each year window falls claim the lives of 18 children.
Children usually sustain serious injuries in window fall accidents. Most land head first and sustain head and brain injuries that result in serious and permanent neurological and cognitive disability. The following are the most common causes of child window fall accidents:
- Faulty window stops and window guards
- Failure to install window stops or window guards
- Negligent Supervision of a Child Caretaker
- Improper furniture placement
Who Can be Held Responsible for Child Window Fall Injuries?
Landlord Negligence (Apartment Building/Complex, Triple Decker Home, Hotel, Motel)
Unfortunately, the Massachusetts Building Code wont help us much in our window fall claim. There is not a building code that requires windows to be a specific height from the floor. Therefore, having windows that are extremely low to the ground and easy for short children to access does not constitute negligence itself.
Owners and Landlords of residential buildings owe the families they rent to and their guests a duty to maintain the property in a reasonably safe condition. That means the property needs to be safe for children, the elderly and anyone else living on the property or legally visiting the property. This duty requires landlords to properly install safe windows and perform window inspections and repairs when needed. A landlord might be required to install additional window safety features like window stops or window guards. A landlord could be found negligent if a child sustained a window fall injury and the landlord failed to properly install windows, failed to repair and maintain the windows or failed to add additional window safety features like window stops or window guards
Property Management/Maintenance Company Negligence
Often times residential building owners, landlords and businesses will hire a professional maintenance company or property management company to maintain the property and make the necessary repairs. These companies have the same duty as a landlord described above. Failure to live-up to their duty could expose them to a negligence claim.
Our child injury attorneys have successfully represented countless families over the years.
Caregivers, Day Care Centers, Child Care Centers, Camps, schools and babysitters could be responsible for negligent supervision. Every child caregiver should know about child window fall hazards. If a child caregiver does not know about the danger or does know about the danger and fails to take adequate measures to prevent or limit the danger then they may be responsible for a child’s injuries. Child caregivers entrusted with the safety and wellbeing of a child have a duty to supervise the child in order to make sure preventable injuries do not occur.
Faulty and Defectively Manufactured or Designed Windows
You may be able to pursue a claim for window fall injuries against a window manufacturer, designer or seller if a window defect resulted in your child’s window fall accident. Windows are not supposed to fall out easily if minimal pressure is applied. Windows stops are components that are added to windows and only allow the window to open enough so that a child cannot fit through the opening. If the window safety components are defective then liability could follow.
Manufacturers have a duty to warn customers of potential dangers associated with their products. In some cases manufacturers need to add warning labels or illustrations to their product so the buyer is made aware of the danger. Placing a small sticker on the window that depicts a child falling out of the window would be enough to inform the owner/purchaser/installer/buyer of the fall hazard.
Boston Area Experienced Wrongful Death and Child Accidental Injury Attorneys
Initial Consultations Are Always Free
If your child suffered an injury or fatality in a fall accident then you need a strong legal advocate on your side who only has your best interest. Insurance companies may be quick to offer you a settlement only to have you sign away your rights to any future legal action. Before you accept an insurance settlement contact us to schedule a free legal consultation to talk with one of our injury lawyers.
We have a proven track record with over 35 years of legal experience.
We understand that no amount of compensation can reduce the pain of losing a child to an accident, or undo long-term damage or injuries your child may have suffered, but we can help you hold those responsible accountable for their actions. The law entitles you to seek compensation to help you recover any financial losses due to medical bills and lost income, or funeral expenses, as well as entitles you to seek compensation for any future expenses.
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Our lawyers assist accident victims throughout all of Southeast Massachusetts including, but not limited to, those in the following counties, cities and towns: Plymouth County including Brockton, Plymouth, Bridgewater, Marshfield, Hingham, Duxbury, Wareham, Abington, Rockland, Whitman, Hanson, Middleborough; Norfolk County including Quincy, Stoughton, Dedham, Weymouth, Braintree, Avon, Holbrook, Randolph, Canton, Sharon, Brookline, Franklin; Bristol County including New Bedford, Fall River, Taunton, Attleboro, Mansfield, Easton, Raynham, Norton; and the Greater Boston area including Cambridge, Dorchester, Roxbury and Somerville.
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