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My 15yr old son fell down the school stairs while exiting. He has a broken leg, a cast for 4 weeks and crutches. How can we sue?

New York, NY |

Even with a cast up to the knee, a broken leg (closed fracture of the tibia, spiral fracture near the ankle), the school has made no arrangements at all to help my son, yet they are making him walk to school in crutches. He is in pain, this happened on 4/12/13, I have all medical/ambulance records.
Please help us, as this may affect his entire future in sports, and it is taking a toll on myself and my other son (I am a single mother of two). Thank you.

Attorney Answers 10

  1. If this is a public school you need to serve a notice of claim within 90 days of the accident. Why did he fall? Was there a hazerdous condition on the stairs? Did the school either create the condition or have notice of it? These are important issues. I handle these cases.

    I am a former federal and State prosecutor and now handle criminal defense and personal injury/civil rights cases. Feel free to check out my web site and contact me at (212) 577-9797 or via email at I was named to the Super Lawyers list as one of the top attorneys in New York for 2012. No more than 5 percent of the lawyers in the state are selected by Super Lawyers. The above answer is for informational purposes only and not meant as legal advice.

  2. You should contact a personal injury attorney right away. You can start by contacting one of the attorneys from your state that answers this question.

    Atty: 845-704-7777. This answer is provided for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. You should not take action based upon this information without consulting legal counsel. This answer is not intended to create, and does not create, an attorney-client relationship. PLEASE REMEMBER: All claims and legal matters have statutes of limitations and/or other important time periods that apply to them. This means that you must take action on all claims or legal matters within the required time period(s) or your claims could be barred by the statute of limitations or dismissed. Contact our office or another competent attorney immediately to discuss the particular facts of any claim or legal issue you might have in order to learn what time periods apply to your particular situation.

  3. You have the right to sue the school if they created the condition or knew of the condition which caused the injury. Speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer as soon as possible to protect his rights.

    If this answer is helpful, then please mark the helpful button. If this is the best answer, then please indicate it. Thanks. For further information you should see an attorney and discuss the matter completely. If you are in the New York City area, then you can reach me during normal business hours at 718 329 9500 or

  4. You need to act fast as a notice of claim needs to be filed right away. I would also need to investigate the facts to examine the potential negligence of the school and/or others as an accident is not compensable (while an accident caused by negligence is). Best of luck and god bless.

    Ryan Finn
    Serving Clients Throughout New York State

    PLEASE READ THIS DISCLAIMER * I very much like to offer my advice and guidance to those in need. It is why I became a lawyer. However, please note that I have not been engaged to be your lawyer so my advice is general in nature. Certainly, if you would like, please feel free to email or call me to further discuss the particulars of your situation (as many times it is not a good idea to provide a lot of information about your case on a public forum). * Hacker Murphy, LLP * 518.213.0115 * * * Hacker Murphy serves clients throughout New York State (including New York City and Long Island). *

  5. It sounds as though your son would have a claim against the City of New York and/or the Department of Education, depending on who owns the building and is responsible for its maintenance and upkeep. In order to be safe, it would be best to bring a claim against both the CNY and DOE as soon as possible so that your rights may be protected.

    As a condition precedent to bringing any claim against these municipal entities you must file Notice of Claim within 90 days of the incident. It sounds like you are well within that time frame at this point but it is important that you contact a local personal injury attorney to begin investigating this matter immediately.

    The merits of your son's claim against the City and DOE depends on many factors, and every case is fact sensitive, but it is best if you do not post anything here as it may be discoverable by the City at a later time. It would be best to call a local personal injury attorney as soon as possible. The injury you describe sounds quite significant and the City will do everything they can to limit your son's recovery. The quicker you act, the more likely it is that important investigation can be performed.

    Good luck and a speedy recovery to your son.

    The aforementioned opinion does not constitute legal advice and is for general educational purposes only. See an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction for competent legal advice. No attorney-client relationship has been formed through the within legal question and answer session.

  6. I'm sorry to hear about your son. To protect his rights, you must file a Notice of Claim with the City of New York within 90 days of the accident if it is a public school or you could forever lose the opportunity to bring a lawsuit. A spiral fracture can be serious and you need to make sure that he is getting the care that he needs. To prove a case, you need to be able to prove that a dangerous or defective condition existed that the school new about (or should have known about) or that they caused or created the condition. If the steps lacked a handrail, you may also have a claim depending on a number if factors. I suggest that you contact an attorney immediately to, at the very least, preserve your right to bring a claim on behalf of your son. Good luck.

    New York Plaintiff's Personal Injury Attorney Serving NYC, Long Island, Westchester and the surrounding areas. The information provided herein is not, and is not intended to be, legal advice. The content herein is for information and educational purposes only, and is based on the limited information provided. Any information provided is not intended to, and does not, create any attorney/client relationship where none exists. For legal advice, please consult with an attorney. While this posting is made for informational purposes only for the AVVO community, to the extent one seeks to contact me based on the content herein, or that this may be viewed by some to be attorney advertising, please be advised of the following: *Attorney Advertising

  7. If there was some kind of defect or dangerous condition, contact one of the above lawyers in your state today to discuss in detail.

  8. Your statement gives no basis upon which you could possibly sue the school and win. The school would need to be found negligent and that negligence deemed to have been the cause of your Son's fall and subsequent injuries.

    You should obtain needed medical care and treatment immediately and follow the doctor's advice. Do not give any statement to the adverse party or insurance company nor grant them access to any medical records. Photograph the injuries and the damage done to any property. Contact a personal injury attorney in your area as soon as possible so that you can protect your rights. You may also find it helpful to review the Legal Guides I have published on dealing with many of the issues you are now facing. The Guides can be accessed through my profile page on

    Legal Disclaimer:

    If this information has been helpful, please indicate below.

    Mr. Lundeen is licensed to practice law in Florida and Vermont. The response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that, if known, could significantly change the reply and make it unsuitable. Mr. Lundeen strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in your state in order to ensure proper advice is received.

    This ans. does not create an attorney/client relationship.

  9. What caused your son to fall? The school is not an absolute insurer for injuries on the property. You must show that there was a dangerous condition and the school either created it or had actual or constructive notice of it.

    My firm is a second generation family firm successfully handling personal injury and medical malpractice cases for over 35 years. "Let Our Family Help Your Family" 516 466-7900

  10. How did he fall? You may have a case, but a short time frame to put it in suit because it is a school.

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