Child Injury Lawyer | Laws That Protect Children

WHY THERE ARE LAWS THAT PROTECT CHILDREN

We don’t leave babies alone in the house because they are not able to take care of themselves at all.  As children grow and mature, they begin to display greater levels of ability and can be rewarded with greater independence.  Laws take this into account and have different protections and expectations for children of different ages.  A child injury lawyer is aware of these laws and how to apply them.

EXAMPLES OF CHILD PROTECTIVE LAWS

CAR SEATS

A statute is a law that is passed by a legislature.  It’s written down and needs to be followed precisely.  An example of a law that protects children is New York State’s Child Restraint Law, it is found in [Section 1229-c(1), NYS Vehicle & Traffic Law and states:

  • All children must be restrained in an appropriate child restraint system while riding in a motor vehicle, until they reach their 8th birthday.
  • An appropriate child restraint system is one that fits the child according to the manufacturer’s specifications for height and weight.
  • The safety belt in your vehicle is not designed for children. A booster seat raises your child up so that the safety belt fits your child correctly and provides better protection.

The law has been amended and

Effective November 1, 2019 – Children under 2 must be in a rear-facing child seat.

All children under the age of 2 must use a rear-facing car seat until they are two years old or reach the highest weight or height limit allowed by the manufacturer of the car seat. For babies that outgrow their infant-only car seat, a convertible or 3-in-1 car seat should be used in the rear-facing position until they outgrow the maximum height and weight for the rear-facing position.

BULLYING

In 2010 Federal and New York law was strengthened with the goal of “zero tolerance” for bullying in schools.  For more information, please see my articles, Children Bullied at School – There IS Something You Can Do About It  and The Psychological Impact of Bullying.

CHILD PROTECTIVE SERVICES

Every state has laws that protect children from abuse and neglect from parents.  Social workers investigate these claims and take action to correct the situation, or to remove the children from the home.

FAMILY LAW

In child custody and parenting time disputes, children are giving increasing “say” as they get older and more mature.  In New York, there is no specific age when a child has the “right” to decide which parent they would prefer to live with (in the case of divorce) or whether or not they would like to see a parent at all.  There is an assessment of the maturity of the child.  Usually, a child has “some say” at age 12, and this increases the closer the child gets to age 18.  The reasoning of the child must also be sound.  For example, a child cannot prefer a parent because “he gets him candy” or other trite reasons.

TRAFFIC ACCIDENTS

There are some laws on the books such as special speed limits and rules near “school zones,” but there is also a “common law” tradition that requires drivers to not expect maturity from a child crossing a street or riding a bike.

PREMISES LIABILITY

Property owners and operators must keep their property safe for children and not create an “attractive nuisance.”

There are many more examples of laws that protect children, and a child injury lawyer will be on top of all of them.  If you have any questions, please feel free to call or fill out the form at the bottom of this page.

Child Injury Lawyer | Laws That Protect Children

WHY THERE ARE LAWS THAT PROTECT CHILDREN We don't leave babies alone in the house because they are not able to take care of themselves at all.  As children grow and mature, they begin to display greater levels of ability and can be rewarded with greater independence.  Laws take this into account and have different protections and expectations for children of different ages.  A child injury lawyer is aware of these laws and how to apply them. EXAMPLES OF CHILD PROTECTIVE LAWS CAR SEATS A statute is a law that is passed by a legislature.  It's written down and needs to be followed precisely.  An example of a law that protects children is New York State's Child Restraint Law, it is found in [Section 1229-c(1), NYS Vehicle & Traffic Law and states: All children must be restrained in an appropriate child restraint system while riding in a motor vehicle, until they reach their 8th birthday. An appropriate child restraint system is one that fits the child according to the manufacturer's specifications for height and weight. The safety belt in your vehicle is not designed for children. A booster seat raises your child up so that the safety belt fits your child correctly and provides better [...]

Do I Need a Pediatric Malpractice Attorney?

Pediatric Malpractice Attorneys specialize is handling cases for children that are victims of medical malpractice.  It is a sub-specialty for the types of medical treatment that children receive, and the types of problems that tend to occur.  Of course, just like with medical treatment, a generalist malpractice attorney can handle many of these cases, but it is usually better to go with a lawyer that is more knowledgeable about this particular area.  A really good malpractice lawyer will know everything about the medical procedures for the case, almost as much as a doctor! Did you know that it could be malpractice for some orthopedists to treat children with broken bones?  That's because children have growth plates which an orthopedist that treats adults may not have enough experience with.  A good orthopedist will refer the child to a pediatric orthopedist.  So the same goes with the attorney, who is familiar with adult orthopedic malpractice, but might not be aware of the details of growth plates and what might constitute malpractice by an orthopedist treating a child. Let's review the sub-specialties, starting in the womb: PRE-NATAL CARE/LOST PREGNANCY: Negligent pre-natal care can lead to problems that children and parents might have to deal [...]

The Psychological Impact of Bullying

Gone are the days when bullying was considered a “rite of passage” and parents whose children have been bullied are told things like “teach them to stand up for themselves” and that “boys will boys.”  We know now that bullying has serious has a serious lifelong impact on a child, and that it has been linked to the current rash of school shootings. While laws on the books are being strengthened, the enforcement of those laws is lagging behind.  It’s time to hold schools accountable for the harm due to the psychological impact of bullying o their students. According to National Voices for Equality, Education and Enlightenment (NVEEE)“Every 7 MINUTES a child is bullied. Adult intervention – 4%. Peer intervention – 11%. No intervention – 85%.” Students who bully others, are bullied, or witness bullying are more likely to report high levels of suicide-related behavior than students who report no involvement in bullying (Center for Disease Control, 2014).  These harsh facts have led to stronger laws to protect students from bullying, but enforcement is lagging behind.  It is now clear that the psychological impact of bullying can be devastating. The United States Office for Civil Rights, issued directives to expand [...]

THE PRISON INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX AND IT’S IMPACT ON CHILDREN

Prison conditions in the United States have the lowest standards compared to other highly developed countries, and the neglect and abuse in the for-profit prisons is worst of all.  Most alarming is the situation at Juvenile Detention Centers, where children as young as twelve years old are held.  Thankfully, there are inmate abuse and neglect attorneys bringing cases for these children throughout the country. In 2013, The Huffington Post , in the article “Prisoners for Profit”:reported: In 2001, an 18-year-old committed to a Texas boot camp operated by one of Slattery’s previous companies, Correctional Services Corp., came down with pneumonia and pleaded to see a doctor as he struggled to breathe. Guards accused the teen of faking it and forced him to do pushups in his own vomit, according to Texas law enforcement reports. After nine days of medical neglect, he died. This story is not an anomaly, this is what’s happening to children every day in the American prison system.  Many of them are being held for low-level crimes and simply for “behaviors,” that are offensive, without any crime having been committed.   According to the Prison Policy Initiative, some youths are locked up for non-criminal offenses such as “truancy, running away, [...]

2018-08-28T12:23:40+00:00

About the Author:

Senior Partner Ms. Wittenstein began working at the firm in 1985 as a managing paralegal, learning all the practices and procedures of the firm from Mr. Wittenstein and the staff. From 1995-1998, she attended CUNY Law School where she made a mark as a teaching assistant for Civil Rights leader Haywood Burns. She founded a Human Rights Delegation to Haiti and studied Constitutional Law with Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Working at the Equal Opportunity Employment Commision (EEOC), she learned a great deal about Employment Discrimination matters. She brought her knowledge of the Personal Injury practice and her passion for Civil Rights to the firm when she was admitted to the Bar in 1999. In 2000, she became a partner and the firm name was changed to Wittenstein & Wittenstein, Esqs. PC.

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