December 12, 2023 In Other Personal Injury

Your Legal Options When Your Child is Injured at a California School

Experiencing your child’s injury at school can be distressing. In California, parents have specific legal avenues to address such situations. It’s crucial to know your rights and the procedures for filing a claim or lawsuit against a school.

Types of Injuries and Incidents

  • Physical Injuries on School Property: If your child suffers physical harm due to inadequate safety measures, like slippery floors or broken playground equipment, you may have grounds for a claim.
  • Injuries During School Activities: Injuries occurring during sports or other school-sponsored activities can also be subject to legal action if negligence is involved.
  • Bullying and Emotional Trauma: Situations where a child is bullied or emotionally harmed due to the school’s failure to intervene can lead to legal claims.

Understanding Liability and Negligence

To file a claim or sue a California school, it’s essential to establish liability and negligence. This means proving that the school or its staff failed to provide a safe environment, leading to your child’s injury.

  • Negligent Supervision: If the injury occurred due to inadequate supervision, this could be a basis for a claim.
  • Facility Hazards: Injuries resulting from poorly maintained facilities or equipment can be grounds for legal action.

Filing a Claim Against a Public School

Public schools in California are part of government entities, so the process involves specific steps:

  1. File a Government Claim: Before suing a public school, you must file a government claim within six months of the injury.
  2. Response to Your Claim: The school has 45 days to respond. If they reject your claim, you can proceed with a lawsuit.

Filing a Lawsuit Against a Private School

Private schools are not government entities, so the legal process is more straightforward:

  • Direct Lawsuit: You can file a lawsuit directly against the private school without the preliminary government claim step.

What You Need to Prove

To succeed in your claim or lawsuit, you’ll need to demonstrate:

  • Duty of Care: Show that the school had a responsibility to keep your child safe.
  • Breach of Duty: Prove that the school failed in its duty, either through action or inaction.
  • Causation: Establish a direct link between the school’s breach of duty and your child’s injury.
  • Damages: Provide evidence of the harm suffered by your child, which can include physical, emotional, and psychological injuries.

Examples of Successful Claims

  • Injury Due to Faulty Equipment: A parent successfully sued after their child was injured by defective gym equipment.
  • Negligent Supervision During Recess: A claim was filed when a child was seriously injured due to lack of supervision during recess.
  • Inadequate Response to Bullying: Parents sued a school for emotional trauma their child suffered due to unchecked bullying.


If your child has been injured at a California school and you are considering legal action, it’s crucial to understand the specific procedures and requirements involved. Whether you’re dealing with a public or private school, establishing negligence and proving the extent of your child’s injuries are key to a successful claim. For professional legal representation in such matters, consider contacting The Mines Law Firm. We specialize in helping clients navigate these challenging situations, ensuring the rights and wellbeing of your child are prioritized.


Disclaimer: This blog is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. For specific legal guidance on your case, please contact The Mines Law Firm for representation.