Can I Gain Access to My Child’s Settlement Money?

can i gain access to my child's settlement money

If your child has been injured due to negligence or misconduct, you may be entitled to financial compensation through a personal injury settlement. However, accessing your child’s settlement money isn’t always straightforward. There are legal procedures in place to protect minors and ensure that any funds awarded are used for their benefit. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the ins and outs of accessing your child’s settlement money, who can file a personal injury claim on behalf of a minor, how the settlement process works, and more.

Who Can Access a Child’s Settlement Money?

As a parent or legal guardian, you have a duty to act in the best interests of your child. This includes managing any settlement money they receive from a personal injury claim. However, gaining access to these funds isn’t as simple as withdrawing money from a bank account. The court typically oversees the handling of a minor’s settlement money to ensure it is used for their benefit.

Who Can File a Personal Injury Claim for a Minor?

A parent or legal guardian can file a personal injury lawsuit on behalf of a minor child. This is often necessary since minors cannot legally enter into contracts or take legal action on their own behalf. If your child has been injured due to someone else’s negligence, it’s essential to consult with a personal injury lawyer who can guide you through the process of filing a claim.

Where Does the Settlement Money Go?

Once a settlement is reached or a judgment is awarded in a personal injury case involving a minor, the settlement money is typically placed into a trust account or blocked account. This ensures that the funds are protected and used for the child’s benefit. In some cases, the court may require the appointment of a guardian ad litem to oversee the handling of the settlement funds.

Can I Use My Child’s Settlement Money?

While you may have access to your child’s settlement money as their parent or legal guardian, it’s essential to use the funds only for their benefit. This may include paying for medical expenses related to the injury, funding educational expenses, or providing for the child’s general welfare. Using the settlement money for your own benefit could result in legal consequences.

Can a Parent File a Lawsuit on Behalf of a Child?

Yes, a parent or legal guardian can file personal injury lawsuits on child’s behalf who has been injured. This allows the child to seek compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, and other damages resulting from the injury. However, any settlement or judgment awarded as a result of the lawsuit will be subject to court approval.

How Is a Child Injury or Personal Injury Settlement for a Minor Handled?

A child injury or personal injury settlement for a minor is typically handled through a structured settlement. This means that the settlement funds are paid out over time rather than in a lump sum. This helps ensure that the child’s long-term needs are met and that the funds are not squandered.

What Is a Minor Settlement Hearing?

A minor settlement hearing is a court proceeding where the terms of the settlement are reviewed and approved by a judge. This is necessary to ensure that the settlement is fair and in the best interests of the child. During the hearing, the judge will consider factors such as the severity of the child’s injuries, the amount of the settlement, and how the settlement funds will be managed.

What Information Does the Court Request to Approve the Settlement of a Child Injury Case?

When seeking court approval for the settlement of a child injury case, the court typically requests specific information to ensure that the proposed settlement is fair and in the best interests of the child. This information is crucial for the judge to make an informed decision regarding the personal injury settlements. Below are the key details the court commonly requests:

  1. Nature and Extent of Injuries: Details about the child’s injuries, including severity and long-term effects.

  2. Medical Treatment Received: Information on past and ongoing medical care, including surgeries, therapies, and medications.

  3. Prognosis and Future Care Needs: Expected recovery timeline and anticipated future medical care requirements.

  4. Cost of Medical Expenses: Documentation of past and estimated future medical costs related to the injuries.

  5. Educational and Special Needs: Expenses for educational support or special accommodations needed due to the injuries.

  6. Lost Wages or Future Earning Capacity: Any impact on the child’s ability to work in the future and associated financial losses.

  7. Settlement Amount and Allocation: Breakdown of the proposed settlement, including compensation for various damages.

  8. Guardian Ad Litem’s Recommendation: Input from the guardian ad litem appointed to represent the child’s interests.

How Is a Child Injury Case Different Than a Regular Case?

Child injury cases differ from regular personal injury cases in several ways. For one, minors cannot legally enter into contracts or make legal decisions on their own behalf. Additionally, the court must approve any settlement or judgment awarded in a child injury case to ensure that the child’s best interests are protected.

How an Attorney Can Help You in a Child Injury Settlement Case

Dealing with the complexities of a child injury settlement can be overwhelming, especially when you’re facing the physical and emotional toll of your child’s injury. In such situations, having an experienced attorney by your side can make all the difference. Here’s how an attorney can assist you in this case:

  1. Legal Expertise: Attorneys have specialized knowledge of personal injury laws and procedures, crucial for navigating complex legal matters.

  2. Case Evaluation: They assess the specifics of your child’s case to determine its strength and potential for obtaining compensation.

  3. Understanding of Child Injury Laws: They are well-versed in laws governing child injury settlements, ensuring compliance with legal requirements.

  4. Negotiation Skills: Attorneys negotiate with the opposing party or their insurance company to secure a fair settlement that adequately compensates your child.

  5. Court Representation: If necessary, they represent your child’s interests in court proceedings, including filing legal documents and presenting evidence.

  6. Protection of Settlement Funds: They help establish trust accounts or structured settlements to safeguard funds for your child’s future needs.

  7. Protecting Your Rights: They work to protect your rights and those of your child, advising you on legal options and ensuring fair treatment throughout the process.

  8. Handling Complexities: Attorneys navigate complex issues like liability determination, damage calculation, and managing settlement funds effectively.

can i gain access to my child's settlement money

Consult a Practiced Personal Injury Attorney at BLG

In summary, accessing your child’s settlement money involves navigating a complex legal process. As a parent or legal guardian, it’s essential to consult with a knowledgeable attorney who can guide you through the process and ensure that your child’s rights are protected. By understanding the legal procedures involved and acting in your child’s best interests, you can help ensure that they receive the compensation they deserve for their injuries.

If you’re facing the daunting task of navigating a child injury settlement and need expert legal guidance, don’t hesitate to reach out to BLG. Our experienced team of attorneys specializes in personal injury cases involving minors and is dedicated to protecting the rights and best interests of children and their families.

Contact us today for a free consultation.


Can I gain access to my child’s settlement money?

Access to a child’s settlement money typically requires a court order or legal guardianship. The court may appoint a guardian or establish a trust to manage the funds on behalf of the child.

How does a structured settlement work for a minor?

In a structured settlement for a minor, the settlement funds are usually placed into a trust or annuity that pays out periodic payments over time, ensuring financial stability and protection for the minor.

Can you inherit a structured settlement?

Yes, structured settlements can be inherited under certain conditions. The terms of the original settlement and applicable laws will determine how the inheritance process unfolds, often involving court approval or assignment of payment rights.

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