For many parents, placing their kids in daycare is an economic reality. Though they may prefer in-home babysitters, many parents look to childcare businesses with employees who watch and care for several babies and young children simultaneously.
Most daycare workers possess the patience and focus to attend to the needs of each child assigned to them, and they may understandably feel overwhelmed at times. But when daycare workers cannot control their frustrations and take it out on a child by violently shaking them in anger, it is a form of child abuse that can cause Shaken Baby Syndrome (SBS).
What Is Daycare Shaken Baby Syndrome?
Shaken Baby Syndrome (SBS) – also called Shaken Impact Syndrome – refers to the signs and symptoms of a severe brain injury. Because of their weak neck muscles, undeveloped brains, and heavy heads, infants and very young children are the most vulnerable. According to the National Center on Shaken Baby Syndrome, approximately 600 to 1,400 cases of SBS occur in the U.S. each year.
The consequences of a daycare employee violently shaking a baby can be life-changing or life-ending, resulting in:
• Cranial swelling
• Inability to lift the head
• Altered levels of consciousness
• Drowsiness and extreme irritability
• Breathing problems and irregularities
• Convulsions or seizures
• Dilated pupils that do not respond to light
• Decreased appetite
• Cardiac arrest
There are long-term effects of SBS, such as:
• Learning disabilities
• Cerebral palsy
• Partial or total blindness
• Chronic seizures
• Mental disabilities
• Physical disabilities
Liability and Compensation for Daycare Shaken Baby Syndrome
Parents and guardians rely on daycare facilities to provide their kids with a safe environment, and the businesses and employees have a legal duty to ensure children’s safety. In fact, Michigan regulates childcare facilities by requiring them to be properly licensed and conduct criminal background checks on their employees. Failure to comply with the law, including placing children at risk by hiring workers known to have shaken a baby or otherwise abused a child, may breach of duty and allow parents to hold daycare facilities, owners, and employees liable for SBS-related injuries and damages.
Shaking a defenseless infant or young child is an inexcusable, criminal act. If you suspect that your child is a victim of Daycare Shaken Baby Syndrome, take immediate action to protect the health, well-being, and rights of your child:
• Immediately seek medical attention
• Contact the police or call your local Michigan child protective services hotline
• Contact the Michigan Department of Health & Human Services to report the abuse
A daycare facility’s owner, operator, or individual employees may face criminal charges for the harm caused to your child, but you may also sue them in a civil action to obtain compensation for:
• Medical bills
• Continuing medical care and treatment
• Physical therapy and rehabilitation
• Loss of enjoyment of life
• Pain and suffering
• Mental anguish
• Emotional distress
• Wrongful death
Hiring a Daycare Shaken Baby Syndrome Attorney
If your child suffered SBS injuries or a tragic death at the hands of a daycare worker, contact an experienced attorney at Sommers Schwartz today. Finding a law firm to handle a Shaken Baby Syndrome lawsuit is a big decision – maybe the most important decision you will ever make.
To learn more about how we can help you and your family, contact us at (800) 783-0989 to schedule a free consultation. The phone call is free, and because we work on a contingency basis, there no fee unless we win.