The Galione Law Firm

How to handle a teen's products liability settlement

When a child suffers a catastrophic injury, parents are mainly concerned with the health ramifications. A lawsuit may follow, as something like products liability could leave another party responsible. But after a Florida court rules on a personal injury case involving a minor, parents in the state still have many things to consider. 

One of the most critical challenges with settlements involving young people is how to manage the money involved. While a teenager may receive a six-figure settlement, he or she may not have the maturity or self-control to spend it properly even after turning 18. For parents, lawyers and others involved in these cases, this can be the biggest sources of stress once a case is settled.

For many parents, the ideal situation is for children to get a portion of the money at different age milestones; for example, a third at age 18, a third at age 25, and a third at age 30. The reason for this usually has less to do with controlling the child or the money, and more about making sure the child makes appropriate decisions. For example, 18-year-olds with a large settlement may forgo early career steps until the money runs out, leaving them behind their peers professionally.

Parents of an injured child must strike a balance between restricting access to money in the early years while still ensuring it is available for necessary expenses, like tuition and medical bills. Teenagers may also have a say in how the money is disseminated or invested, especially after turning 18. It is a good idea for Florida parents to involve a lawyer in every step of a products liability or other personal injury case involving a child to work out these issues.

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The Galione Law Firm
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Gainesville, FL 32607

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