Legal News Archive by Area: School Injuries
December 07, 2018 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
Finding the right school for your child is always difficult. A parent must reconcile a great many disparate elements in determining the right fit. A quality education is the foremost goal for most parents, but having a school with the right cultural sensitivities (and for the right price) is also important.
Continue Reading: Schools Restrict Parental Access to Own Children
October 02, 2018 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
Relying on the criminal courts for justice can be a tricky proposition, as evidenced by the fallout of a judge dismissing charges against a Teacher’s Assistant for excessive discipline of a special needs student on June 20th, 2018. According to eyewitnesses, the Teacher’s Assistant slammed the student’s arm on a desk and then threatened additional physical assault.
Continue Reading: School Assault Not Prosecuted
September 28, 2018 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
With school back in session, more and more institutions are recommending school insurance, from preschool all the way up to college. The premise of school insurance is simple; if your child is injured on school property, or on a school field trip or at a school athletic event, the insurance company pays the medical bills or provides a lump sum payment towards them.
Continue Reading: School Insurance Does Not Guarantee Financial Safety
September 14, 2018 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
Millions of American children take part in sports, whether it be pickup games at the park, Little League, or school teams. Sports can be a great opportunity for a young person to learn social skills as well as get exercise. Children who participate in sports develop self-discipline as well as learning to follow rules.
Continue Reading: Negligence in Sports Injuries Can Be Difficult to Identify
September 10, 2018 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
The number of alcohol-related deaths and injuries at fraternity parties over the last decade has attracted national attention to bad practices that have long dominated this aspect of campus life. Though not as publicized as incidents elsewhere, the 2013 death of a Baruch University freshman showed New Yorkers just how dangerous these practices could be.
Continue Reading: Fraternities Acknowledge Dangers of Past Practices
October 05, 2017 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
Bullying has become an epidemic in American schools. Every day, hundreds of thousands of students are subjected to humiliating experiences by their classmates or, in some cases, by teachers and administrators. Though steps are being taken nationwide to address this issue, many school districts and individual schools are woefully behind the times in instituting common sense precautions to minimize the effects of bullying.
Continue Reading: Bullying at the Next Level Puts Children at Risk
September 08, 2017 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
Student Insurance Plans for elementary through high school age students are not an entirely new invention, but the fact some school districts are starting to act as a go-between for these insurance companies is new. There has been no widespread attempt to determine just how common it has become for schools to offer these types of policies, but a cursory search of the internet indicates they are becoming more and more common.
Continue Reading: Added Insurance for Keeping Children Safe at School
August 24, 2017 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
A number of schools across the country opted to close for the day to celebrate the August 21st, 2017 eclipse. Celebrating the eclipse is wonderful, but schools were likely motivated as much by safety as by science. For larger school districts, having responsibility for thousands of children during a dangerous event such as a solar eclipse just did not make sense.
Continue Reading: Viewing the Eclipse at School
August 21, 2017 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
Sometimes it seems you cannot watch the news for more than a week without seeing another story about a teacher having an inappropriate relationship with a student. Parents can no longer send their children off to school without worrying that educators could be predators. It was always difficult raising teenagers to have appropriate boundaries, but when the teachers are taking advantage of vulnerable youngsters, it can seem almost impossible for a parent to keep their child safe.
Continue Reading: Keeping Students Safe from Inappropriate Boundaries
March 28, 2017 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
Schools are responsible for the safety of the children who attend. Many parents expect there is some degree of danger to certain activities, such as Physical Education, where bruises and scrapes are common. Extracurricular activities, such as sports and even drama, can carry some risk of injury. But most parents don’t expect the food their children are served in the cafeteria to pose significant risk.
Continue Reading: Food Contamination Risk in New York City Schools
March 06, 2017 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
An extreme example of the dangers present in many schools occurred in Joplin, Missouri on March 4th, 2017. A high school student was volunteering at an elementary school, mentoring young players, when he was crushed and killed by one of the basketball goals during the game. Authorities are still investigating the incident to determine exactly what went wrong.
Continue Reading: Maintenance Failures Present Dangers in School Environments
March 24, 2016 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
When parents send their children off to school in the morning, there is always concern that their young ones will be kept safe. Aside from more common school injuries such as accidents on the playground or while playing sports, parents now have an entire new set of concerns. What does a parent do with the possibility of everything from students with weapons roaming the halls or their children being exposed to lead in the water they drink every day?
Continue Reading: Danger Comes in Different Forms for School Children
September 24, 2015 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
Striking a delicate balance between letting your child have the freedom to explore while keeping them safe is always difficult. One of the biggest worries for most parents is that their child will fall and hit their head, or run into a doorframe or some other hard object at a high speed. Parents are terrified that head injuries will have a long-term negative impact on the life of their child, and it turns out parents are right.
Continue Reading: Freedom Versus Vulnerability with School Injuries
August 06, 2015 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
School bells have either already rung or will ring soon for millions of children across America. As summer break draws to a close, children will be returning to their schools, or attending new schools entirely. Sending your child off to school is difficult for any parent, but it is especially difficult when your child is going to a new school. You don’t know the faculty, you don’t know the school layout, you don’t know much of anything about the people and place you are trusting with your kid’s safety.
Continue Reading: Back to School: A Playground for Accidents and Injuries
June 17, 2015 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
Notre Dame insists it was an accident, and there was nothing they could have done to prevent it. When Senior William Meckling fell to his death from the roof of a campus sports arena just days before he was set to graduate, students and faculty alike began to ask questions as to how he even had access to the area. The university didn’t have an answer.
Continue Reading: School Injuries: College Bound Not Always Safe
January 22, 2015 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
The primary purpose of school is education. We are only willing to part with our children for hours and hours a day because we want what is best for them, and it is practically impossible to find long-term success without a quality education. As a society, we have determined that school is so important that everyone has a right to attend.
Continue Reading: School Injuries: Kids Will Be Kids
November 19, 2014 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
There is no outrage left. Despite years of proof, including improper maintenance of buses, letting bullies get more and more out of hand, and the fact we are graduating students who are unable to read, we all wanted to believe that schools were basically looking out for our children. After a terrible tragedy in Georgia, there is no longer any way to believe that.
Continue Reading: School Injuries: A School of No Thought
October 29, 2014 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
Bullying comes in many shapes and forms, some of which have sadly become an accepted part of American culture. Most of society has turned against the more dangerous forms of bullying at elementary schools and high schools, but colleges still seem to view the harsh treatment of others as part of a rite of passage, and many high school athletics have the same view.
Continue Reading: School Injuries: Bullying in the Classroom and Beyond
September 08, 2014 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
It can be impossible to predict an impending tragedy. As parents, we pay attention to the big signs. We counsel our children against riding with a friend who has been drinking. We teach them to be careful when crossing streets, and to report bullying before it escalates to a dangerous level. But we can’t possibly predict when a day of fun will take a terrible turn.
Continue Reading: School Activities:: Not All Fun and Gamese
August 06, 2014 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
Leigh Starks knows a thing or two about football. Over the years he has acted as agent for multiple generations of stars, including Troy Aikman, Ricky Williams and Ben Roethlisberger. So when Leigh Starks writes something about football, we should pay attention to it.
Continue Reading: School Injuries: Leading with Our Heads
July 18, 2014 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
When many of us were growing up, we did not fear that our lives would be at stake in the hallways and classrooms at public schools. Jealousies over boyfriends and girlfriends occasionally broke into fights, but the worst thing that could happen was a student requiring medical attention. Society has changed over the past 20 years. As parents, we have good reason to fear that our children will not survive another day, even in those smaller towns considered safe. A mentally ill adult—or bullied or alienated student—might burst on to a campus with a gun to kill students and teachers.
Continue Reading: Gun Violence at School: Being Aware is Key
July 11, 2014 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
The tragic drowning of a young man in Georgia has reminded parents of how dangerous “Grad Night” can be. Eighteen-year-old Chance Werner had just graduated high school hours earlier when he and his friends decided to play a game they called "the shopping cart game." The kids took turns being pushed to the edge of a dock in a shopping cart, hoping to be rocketed through the air and enjoy some cheap thrills. The cart was tied to a pole to provide the necessary torque, but in this case, Chance tied the cart rope to his belt loop.
Continue Reading: Grad Night: When Teen Antics Become a Game of Death
June 19, 2014 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
After years of hard work, most people are ready to celebrate, and few celebrations are as exciting and well-deserved for young people than those that come after graduating high school or college. With four years of hitting the books, people want to let loose for a little while and have fun, and graduation night is the perfect opportunity to burn off some of that pent up energy.
Continue Reading: Moderation in All Things, Even Celebration
May 13, 2014 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
Recently the links between cyber bullying and suicide have caused many agencies to publish reports and cautionary advice about what to do to protect your adolescent in the face of the pressures they encounter on a daily basis. Megan Meier killed herself after being bullied on MySpace in 2006, and is one of the earliest reports of a teen suicide linked to online bullying. More recently, in 2013, teenager Rebecca Sedgwick jumped to her death from atop a concrete plant in an effort to escape the aggressive online bullying from two Florida classmates. Are these cases rare? How often does cyber bullying occur, and what can we do to prevent these tragedies from happening?
Continue Reading: Sharing Information With Caution: Cyber Bullying and Consequences
May 02, 2014 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
In March 2014, newspapers nationwide carried accounts of the tragic death of an 18-year-old student at Arizona State University who was apparently intoxicated, lost her balance and plunged from the tenth floor balcony of an apartment complex. The woman earlier attended an off-campus party that a banned fraternity had sponsored. The authorities told the press that the party encouraged binge drinking because those who attended paid $30 for unlimited drinking. However, the fraternity admitted men for free if they brought three women to the party. (The legal age for drinking in Arizona is 21.) Sadly, a surveillance video captured the woman unsteady on her feet as she walked through the apartment lobby, rode in an elevator and walked through a hallway to a friend’s apartment. Aware of her inebriated state, her friends took her inside to lie down, and left to attend another party in the apartment complex. After they left, the woman walked onto the balcony, straddled the railing, lost her balance and fell to her death.
Continue Reading: Turning the Tap Dry on Binge Drinking on Campus
April 21, 2014 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
Beginning in April and May, many high schools across the country enlist the assistance of local health authorities and agencies to perform a simulated crisis event on their high school campuses. In preparation for prom nights, festive graduation nights and other activities that cause teens to joyride and party, the intent of these simulations is to show in real-life time what might happen if an accident occured. In most cases, the students are not warned that the event will take place, except for the few who are taking part as victims and actors of the scene. Such scenes could include a fatal car accident, a sniper shooting, or schoolyard bullying and beating. Other students, unaware of the crisis exercise, are told to congregate in a football field, which has become the scene of the accident. Seeing their friends “involved” is a sight many teens will never forget as real emergency responders arrive at the scene, students are transported via gurney and pronounced “dead” at the scene. Others cry in disbelief and struggle to regain composure.
Continue Reading: Crisis Simulation Exercise: Helping to Avoid a Disaster
April 04, 2014 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
Fraternities are a long-standing tradition at college campuses in America. They offer freshmen opportunities of a ready social life in an unfamiliar and large campus, help to forge lifelong friendships and leadership skills, and can lead to job and career opportunities. However, fraternities also have a dark side that is associated at times with drinking and other excessive activities. Fraternity members have engaged in activities that result in disciplinary actions including expulsion.
Continue Reading: Hazing: A Common and Hazardous College Tradition
March 18, 2014 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
Spring break has a decades-old tradition in America as a time when college students take a breather from their studies, travel to distant, warm resort communities, party and find romance. Hollywood popularized spring break with movies such as “Where the Boys Are,” released in 1960 and set in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; and “Palm Springs Weekend,” released in 1963.
Continue Reading: Spring Break Has Its Perils
February 13, 2014 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
In a sad turn of events, we hear more often than not of shootings taking place in and around schools all over the country. Long gone are the days where we worry about our child falling off a piece of playground equipment; now we worry that the injury that day could end up so much worse than we ever imagined. Aside from sitting next to our child every second of the way on the school bus to and from school, we know what we must place a certain amount of trust in the instructors and protectors of our children. Government rules and regulations come into the forefront with the debate and controversy surrounding school related violence. What can you do in the mean time to ensure your children are protected?
Continue Reading: School Injuries: Not Limited to the Playground
December 09, 2013 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
Few tragedies affect us like ones involving children, and it’s likely none of us will ever forget the tragedy in Newtown in December 2012 when a gunman opened-fire in an elementary school killing his mother, 20 first graders and 6 teachers in this horrifying shooting spree. Hearing about an injured child is heartbreaking, particularly where multiple children are involved. Several questions remain unanswered, and many may never be answered. Families of both the victims and the killer are devastated, and may never heal from this type of loss. While developments have recently surfaced in the news about new findings in this case, many continue to wonder why
Continue Reading: Sandy Hook Elementary: One Year Later
November 21, 2013 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
Bullying has been around for hundreds of years, generally in the form of verbal taunting and physical injury at schoolyards, playgrounds and work environments. While many eventually outgrow bullying as personalities mature, there are still some bullies that take to stalking and bullying online. We see this more often among high school children who taunt classmates through Facebook and other online forums. In extreme sad cases, we hear of children who committed suicide because they couldn’t take the taunting any longer, finding themselves succumbing to the bullying and jeers of online videos and posts that do more than damage a budding personality.
Continue Reading: Cyber Stalking and Bullying: Injuries to Your Children
October 21, 2013 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
Arizona State University is considered one of the schools with the most active sorority and fraternity lifestyles. Arizona State is not alone. As with this university and many others in New York and the east coast, new students from all over pledge to be a part of these organizations and seek to find a true identity for themselves while creating long-lasting friendships. Fraternities all over the country find themselves in a busy time when school starts in the fall. Along with fraternity pledging comes accidents in the forms of carelessness and hazing.
Continue Reading: Fraternity Accidents on the Rise When School Starts
October 07, 2013 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
A recent news report indicated that since the year 2009 a total of 39 high school football players have died during practice or during games. These football-related deaths come in the forms of head-on collisions, heat exhaustion, impact play and unsafe conditions. When your child wants to play high school football or another sport, what should you do?
Continue Reading: Football and Other High School Sports Injuries
July 26, 2013 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
Unfortunately, we see sad headlines time and time again: teen abuse and suicide related to bullying and cyber bullying. We know that bullying comes in all forms, from verbal abuse to mild physical assault, muggings, brutal beatings, and outings on Facebook and other social media platforms. Bullying can cause severe injury to the victim. Laws are being established to define acceptable behavior, and lawsuits are continually filed against schools where bullying takes place. Adults supervising children at school are required to report child abuse situations and bullying can easily fall into that category. They must report if a child is in distress from bullying, but it can be difficult to recognize instances of bullying, particularly when there are threats to the victim who displays a tendency to hide any injuries and cover up through fabrication of stories or minimizing the action. And, in many cases, whose side do the authorities take? If a student is perceived as weak, it might be easier for the school principal to say that the child needs to toughen up. While it may be difficult to entrust or rely on the school to ensure your child’s safety, it’s wise to tune in to signs and symptoms that bullying may be occurring.
Continue Reading: When Bullying Takes Over Your Child’s Day
November 06, 2012 | Former Judge NYC Civil Court Housing Part George M. Heymann
As recently pointed out by former Quens County Supreme Court Justice Leonard L. Finz in his article titled: The Duty of a School to a Student Injured in a School Activity (10/12/12), there are several factors that must be proven in order for a student to succeed in holding a school liable for the alleged injuries he or she claims was directly caused by the school's negligence. Aside from the fact that such injury must have been proximately caused by the school's negligence, it is the foreseeability of the potential harm by the school (i.e.: faculty, para-professionals and school security) that is the key factor.
Continue Reading: What are the Parameters for a School's duty to protect a Child off School Premises?
October 10, 2012 | Former NYS Supreme Court Justice Leonard L. Finz
With millions of students in public schools, accidents and injuries are a statistical reality. The legal questions that emerge in those cases where a student injured are: What is the duty the school owes to the student and what liability attaches to the school? The body of law that determines the liability of a school is in the category of negligence or tort law, which sets out the general principles that everyone, including schools, are responsible for their own wrong doing if the act that produced the harm is reasonably foreseeable, and if it is a substantial factor in causing the harm. The principle of law just stated when properly applied to the facts at issue will determine whether the injured student or the defendant school, prevails.
Continue Reading: The Duty of a School to a Student Injured in a School Activity
June 08, 2012 | Finz & Finz, P.C.
Plaintiff, a high school student, was allegedly injured during a softball game when she slid into second base. The cause of the injury was the improperly positioned base that had a pointed side, rather than a flush side facing first base. As plaintiff slid into second base, her left foot hit the point of the base and she stopped abruptly. The base had been securely anchored into the ground by the school's grounds crew.
Continue Reading: In School Injury Sports Related Accidents Assumption of Risk is Not Always a Bar to Recovery