Bullying And Wrongful Death Lawsuits
The issue of bullying has become increasingly complex and scary, particularly in the cyber world and for children. More and more parents are forced to seek legal counsel to help remedy injustices experienced by their children. Recently, a mother in Florida decided to sue the bullies who tormented her daughter to the point where she chose to take her own life.
Cases such as these have resulted in families receiving compensation and other forms of retribution for their lost. These assets have proven invaluable in helping to pay for funeral costs and the emotional pain endured. At the same time, the legal system is complicated and certainty for justice can be elusive is cases involving bullying.
Below are a few factors that make “bullying” wrongful death lawsuits a unique challenge:
They Lack Precedence
Though bullying has become a buzzword in the media, it is still a relatively new concept for the legal system to handle. In fact, in past generations in the United States, bullying was interpreted as part of the maturation process that young people learned to endure.
Even though a wrongful death suit may succeed despite the absence of a crime, it is more difficult to prove culpability when the parties responsible acted in a legal manner, therefore undermining arguments contending negligence.
Minors Have Protection Under the Law
Although parents and families can be held legally responsible for the actions of their children, it maybe quite difficult to persuade a jury that young people are significant threats and/or that their parents somehow could have precluded their behavior in question.
The most challenging and important component of a wrongful death case is to illustrate a substantive connection between one party’s behavior and the other party’s death. Typically, it can be challenging to demonstrate that a child chose to take his or her own life directly because of the behavior of a bully. Moreover, the courtroom procedure will involve sensitive inquiries into the victim’s mental state and the parenting capacities of their mother and father.
Though cases such as these will continue to challenge the boundaries and nature of the legal system, your child should not be forced to endure such potentially devastating behavior. If your child is being abused, bullied or harassed in or outside of school, seek professional guidance from a counselor. If you feel you have a legal case, contact a qualified attorney to determine your next steps.
Attorney, BPR# 33237
Schell & Davies, LLC