What Happens If My Child Is Hurt With a Babysitter?

Most parents will use a babysitter to care for their children at some point in their life. The babysitter could be a parent, a sibling, a friend, or neighbour. Whoever you leave your children with, once you do, they assume the responsibility for your children’s care. This means that they have a duty to take reasonable steps to ensure that the children are safe at all times. So, what happens if your child is injured while under the supervision of a babysitter? If your child is injured when in their care, you may have an action against them for negligent supervision.

Whether or not negligent supervision can be established will depend on the facts of that case. However, generally speaking, the babysitter will be held to the standard of a reasonable person. This means that their actions, or lack thereof, will be examined in relation to what a reasonable person would have done in those particular circumstances. This is called the “reasonable person” test. This test may be narrowed to examining what parents in that specific community generally did.

The situations where children are injured while under the care of a babysitter are often avoidable. Proper supervision can prevent a child from falling down the stairs, falling into a swimming pool, or running out into the street. So, when it comes to babysitters, or leaving your children in anyone’s care, be sure that you are fully aware of their qualifications and capabilities. Ensure they have the training and experience required to take care of your children. Although children may not be easily controlled, they can be properly supervised and proper supervision can prevent them from suffering unnecessary injuries.

About the Authors

A born-and-raised Barrie resident, Karen knows and loves her community. She is proud to be a partner in one of Canada’s most successful personal injury law firms—right in her own backyard. Karen joined Oatley Vigmond in 2013 as an associate lawyer. She holds a BA from Queen’s University and her Juris Doctor from Bond University in Australia. Prior to being called to the Bar in January 2013, Karen articled at a well-known personal injury law firm in Toronto.

To learn more about Karen, please click here.