Minor Settlement: What You Need to Know
When the personal injury involves an adult plaintiff, it’s easy to complete the process, but it becomes tougher when a child is involved. Nevertheless, with the right presentation, your minor will have the settlement approval. The law in Colorado approves minor settlements to the best of their interest. At Combs and Brown, we endeavor to offer the best personal injury representation to our clients.
Personal Injury Claims Concerning Minors in Colorado
The court must approve a personal injury claim concerning a minor in Colorado for the final settlement. Also, the court must approve a guardian who represents the minor in court. The guardian is usually an addition to the lawyer representing the minor.
On presentation of the case, the court reviews its details and the proposed settlement. After case closure, the court also approves how to handle the fund based on the minor’s best interest.
The Probate Law, Rule 62
The probate law governs the court’s adoption or approval of minors’ settlements in Colorado. The rule of probate procedure 62 regulates the process, which focuses on protecting the best interest of minors.
Rule 62 is part of the Colorado rules of probate procedure and approves the settlement of the disabled and minors. It governs the settlement petition when there is a claim to be settled for the minor, ensuring the insurance is in the minor’s best interest and disallows any conflict of interest.
Procedure for Minor Settlement in Colorado
When the court accepts the settlement petition, the rule 62 procedure approves the minor’s settlement. The settlement process is designed to avoid influence from others, even family members, especially those who may have been in the same personal injury accident. Other interested parties also include:
- Those seeking guardianship or conservatorship
- Insurance companies involved
- A party interested in subrogation
- Government entities involved in the payment of benefits
- Any other party ordered by the court
The court gives all the settlement specifications, terms, and conditions based on the rule 62 hearing. Other orders from the court include the amount given to medical personnel with outstanding bills, the fees and costs paid to lawyers, and the amount offered to the minor upon settlement approval.
The ways a court can protect the funds of a minor after settlement include:
- Holding through a fiduciary restricted account for less than $10,000 net settlement
- Placed in a conservatorship where the court appoints a converter if the net settlement is above $10,000
- Structured settlements
The Role of a Conservator
The court appoints a conservator when the amount of money after settlement approval exceeds $10,000. The courts represent the minor’s best interests after the proceedings.
The appointment or nomination of a conservator is made on a separate petition, but can also be made during the rule 62 proceedings. Upon nomination and approval, the conservator becomes the financial protector of the minor’s possession. He/she must also file annual reports showing the financial proceedings.
Statutes of Limitations for Minors in Colorado
The statute of limitations in Colorado is 2 years and 3 years for car accidents. However, minors must wait until they’re 20 or 21 years to file a claim. The parent can petition on behalf of their child anytime after the accident. This is where minor settlement comes in.
Minor settlement can be a hectic process, but with the law focusing on offering the best results to the minor, it is worth it. Especially when you have a good representative, it becomes easier for you to approve the settlement for your child. At Combs Brown, LLC, we partner with you through the entire settlement procedure to ensure you get maximum compensation. Contact us today to learn more.
Contact us today and benefit from a successful consultation on how to meet your child’s financial support.