If a child under the age of 18 years, has been involved in an accident and another person, company, business, or public body is at fault, their next friend can bring a claim on their behalf. The child cannot bring the claim as they do not have capacity to do so.
The next friend of a child will be the child’s parent or guardian. When a child is injured, the first focus will always be on ensuring the child gets proper medical attention. It is also a good idea to speak any persons who were with the child and get a brief statement from them as to what occurred. As it is the next friend who is acting on behalf of the child, but may not have been involved in the accident, it is a good idea in the early stages for the best friend to take a statement from the child with as much detail as possible, to take photos of the child’s injury, and to get any witness details available.
Children most commonly have accidents in playgrounds or play centres, day-care, creches, at school, and in public places.