Can a Child Sue a Parent for Negligence in Massachusetts?

Yes. In Massachusetts, a child can sue his or her parent for injuries caused by the negligence of the parent. In the case that made this rule clear, a three year old child sued her mother for injuries to her hand. The mother had brought the three year old to their family pizza shop. The mother was in the kitchen making dough with the daughter. The mother answered the telephone and while she wasn’t paying attention, the daughter got her hand caught in the dough rolling machine. Because the child was a minor, the lawsuit was filed against the mother by the father.

In Massachusetts, parents are not immune from lawsuits by their children. The general principle is that parents have a duty of reasonable care toward their children. When a parent a acts negligently and their child is injured, then the child can bring a lawsuit against his/her parent for their injuries just like anyone else could.

One thing to keep in mind, though, is that a child under 18 is not a legal adult under the “eyes of the law;” they are a minor. Since they are a minor, the lawsuit must be brought on behalf of them by an adult. This adult does not have to be a parent, it can be a suitable guardian. But, the guardian must be looking out for the best interests of the child in bringing the lawsuit.

Of course, once the child turns 18, the child could file the lawsuit against their parent for himself.

If you have a child who has been injured by the negligence of a parent, you should consult an attorney who has experience with representing children in personal injury cases.