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What is the negligent supervision of a child?

Parents are protective of their children by nature. That is why it can be incredibly challenging for parents in Allentown to entrust their young child’s care to another person—even another member of their family. Parents know their child best, after all. 

And as parents, we can do as much research as possible about caregivers, from daycare centers to school programs, in efforts to protect our children. Unfortunately, we cannot always protect our children from the negligence of others.

Child injuries are a bigger problem than you might think

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), injuries are the leading cause of death for children from birth to age 19. The mindful care and attentive supervision of children are some of the easiest ways to prevent injuries from falls or serious accidents. And yet, the CDC states that these injuries are still far too common.

And one of the most common causes of these injuries is negligent supervision.

What exactly is negligent supervision?

A caregiver becomes negligent when they fail to monitor a child properly. And that negligence usually results in a severe injury. 

Negligent supervision looks different in every situation. It is not always as simple as the failure to actually watch the child while they play. It includes anything that puts a child’s welfare at risk, including:

  • Allowing children to play with unsafe objects
  • Failing to baby-proof or child-proof an area
  • Providing improper care to a child

Sometimes, it is just an accident. Children run, play and explore the world around them. And accidents are bound to happen when they do that. However, a skinned knee from falling off of a bicycle is very different from suffering a severe head injury from a fall on dangerous property.

Who is at fault for negligent supervision?

Anyone who is trusted with a child’s care could be liable for a child’s injury, including:

  • Babysitters or daycare providers
  • Teachers or coaches
  • Family members
  • Even parents

It is critical to note that there is a different standard of negligence when it comes to child injuries. The level of liability is significantly higher when a child suffers an injury versus when an adult does. The younger the child is, the more liability that supervising adults carry.

Negligent supervision is easily preventable. And hopefully, spreading awareness can help reduce the risk of injury that our children face because of it.