The SE Texas Record reports that a settlement has been reached in a lawsuit against a Jefferson County Daycare. The sum of the settlement was $10,000, which was a lawsuit over a child who was left unattended.
The suit alleged that the child who was the focus other lawsuit was left in a van without supervision in May of 2011. The lawsuit further alleged that there was no air conditioning on in the van and that the child was in the van for approximately ½ hour before the child managed to get out of the van on her own. The child went back to the daycare herself, but the lawsuit alleges that the daycare facility staff tried to cover up the incident to avoid any consequences.
The lawsuit settlement was split between the attorney’s fees and over $6,000 set aside for the child.
Not every instance where a parent ends up filing a lawsuit against a daycare center has to do with abuse. In many cases, the daycare center is simply neglectful of their duties and, in being neglectful, places a child in harm’s way. The child in this lawsuit, for instance, could have been at risk for a multitude of health issues due to having been left in a van with no air conditioning. These types of incidents are actually more common than many people may think. There have been several instances across the nation where people have successfully sued a daycare facility because their child was left in a van or other facility vehicle unattended.
The allegations in this lawsuit also imply the disturbing reality that daycare facility staff and administration may conspire to cover up an instance of neglect. In such situations, it might be hard to figure out what exactly happened, particularly if your child isn’t talking about it without being questioned. Remember to remind a child that whatever happened isn’t their fault and to let them know that they’re not going to get in trouble for being honest.
Dealing with neglectful daycare facilities can be very difficult. Trying to document abuse can be complicated by stonewalling on the part of the staff, a lack of surveillance equipment and other factors. If you’re unsure about whether or not something that happened to your child at daycare is something over which you can sue, consult an attorney.