If my son was injured due to horseplay, are the other kid’s parents liable?

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If my son was injured due to horseplay, are the other kid’s parents liable?

My son and another kid were messing around and the other kid accidentally pushed my son’s face into a window sill at school. Both of his front teeth were chipped and require crowns at about $2000. I need to know if the other parents are liable for the cost of the repairs.

Asked on February 7, 2012 under Personal Injury, Indiana

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If the horseplay was mutual--that is, it wasn't the other boy shoving or pushing your child when he was trying to get away, for example--then it is very unlikely you could recover compensation. For there to be compensation, there must be fault; fault in a case like this is judged by a standard of negligence, or unreasonable carelessness; what is "unreasonable" is judged by the standard of the age of the participants. Simply put, boys horse around; when they do, one may accidentally get hurt. If the other boy did not deliberately push your son's face into a window sill with an intention to cause injury, it is unlikely that it will be found that he was negligent, or unreasonably careless, by indulging in horseplay with your son.


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