Daycare Negligence in Oregon

Thousands of families in Oregon rely on daycares every day in this state. The last thing that any parent or guardian should have to worry about is their child sustaining a serious injury due to the careless or negligent actions of daycare workers. Unfortunately, injuries in daycares occur more often than they should. Licensed daycares in Oregon have a legal obligation to keep your child safe from undue harm. Here, we want to discuss daycare negligence, some of the injuries children sustain at daycares, and what you can do as a parent if this occurs.

Did you sign a waiver?

Most daycares require parents to sign waivers to lift liability should a child experience injuries not directly caused by daycare negligence. However, a daycare can still face liability for a child’s injury in which their negligence was a contributing factor.

Accidents will happen at a daycare, but the daycare center may be deemed negligent in certain situations. This can include the following behaviors:

  • Failing to remove hazards that pose a threat to children
  • Neglecting to safely monitor children
  • Placing a child in harm’s way
  • Abusing a child
  • Engaging in careless or reckless actions that contribute to a child’s injury

Some of the most common injuries that children sustain at daycares include:

  • Minor injuries (cuts, bruises and scrapes)
  • Severe injuries (dislocations, broken bones, head or neck injuries, internal injuries, dental injuries)
  • Unintentional poisoning
  • Choking or suffocation
  • Severe burns
  • Drowning or near-drowning

New legislation aimed at daycare negligence

In the middle of 2019, Governor Kate Brown signed HB 2027. This piece of legislation had been making its way through the state legislature for some time, and goes a long way in closing significant legal gaps concerning daycare negligence. Speaking to the strength of this new law, one of the bill’s sponsors told The Oregonian that this law “will give the Office of Child Care the tools to gather information, inspect facilities and hold providers accountable for meeting the highest standards of safety and quality care for children.”

This law strengthens the oversight of the daycare industry in Oregon by giving the Office of Child Care the authority to:

  • Issue subpoenas
  • Take depositions
  • Compel witness statements
  • Required the disclosure of records during investigations

Additionally, this law also prevents any child care worker who faces suspension proceedings from working in the industry.

Civil action by the family may be necessary

If your child has been injured at a daycare due to the careless or negligent actions of the daycare provider, it may be necessary to file a personal injury lawsuit in civil court in order to recover the compensation you and your child are entitled to. While the state will conduct its own investigation into serious incidents, that does not necessarily mean that justice will be served. By working with a skilled daycare injury lawyer in Oregon, you can ensure that there will be a thorough investigation into the incident. An attorney will understand what evidence needs to be obtained in order to prove liability and obtain the compensation your family is entitled to. This could include:

  • Coverage of any medical bills your child incurs
  • The cost of continued or in-home medical care
  • Lost income if a parent cannot work while their child recovers
  • Pain and suffering damages
  • Possible punitive damages against the daycare and staff member

Injuries caused by the careless or negligent actions of daycare staff members must be taken seriously. Not only will a civil personal injury lawsuit help ensure that you and your child are taken care of, but your civil action could help prevent other children from suffering from the same type of injury in the future. Contact our Portland daycare injury attorneys today.