Minors in Texas lack legal capacity, so they cannot file a lawsuit by themselves in Texas.
But Rule 44 of the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure allows injured minors to file a lawsuit with a court-appointed legal representative known as a next friend.
Minors can settle their lawsuits in mostly the same way as anyone who files a lawsuit.
However there are some important provisions for settlements by next friends under Texas Civil Procedure Rule 44:
Rule 44 allows the Next Friend to make all these decisions for the minor, just like a legal guardian would decide things like where the minor will attend school.
Lawsuits generally involve costs like court and attorney’s fees. Rule 44 requires that the Next Friend gives proof or security that any expenses owed by the minor in the lawsuit will be paid by the next friend.
If the next friend decides to settle the minor’s lawsuit and signs a settlement, the legal settlement is binding on the minor. That means the minor cannot file another lawsuit later for the same accident or injury, even when the minor becomes an adult.
Injured minors have rights in Texas. They can recover money and compensation for their injuries and property damages through a next friend legal representative.
But lawsuits can be complex and challenging, and most require the help of an Austin personal injury attorney.
Justinian & Associates has successfully represented minors in Austin personal injury lawsuits. We are compassionate and understanding, and many of our attorneys are parents themselves.
We work on contingency, meaning unless we get you money for you injuries, you don’t owe us anything.
Our firm offers an entirely free consultation with an experienced Austin personal injury attorney (not a “screener” or paralegal.) There is no obligation.
If you or your loved one has been injured in Texas, call, text or email us to set up a free consultation. Or find out more about filing a Texas personal injury lawsuit through a next friend here.