Settlement of Personal Injury Cases for Minors in Tennessee

Tennessee law requires that personal injury cases for minors be approved by the court.

Tenn. Code Ann. § 29-34-105 provides:

(a) Notwithstanding any other law or rule to the contrary, a judge or chancellor may sign an order approving any tort claim settlement involving a minor that is less than ten thousand dollars ($10,000) by relying on affidavits from the legal guardian. The court shall conduct a chambers hearing at which the minor and legal guardian are present to approve any tort claim settlement involving a minor that is ten thousand dollars ($10,000) or more.

The goal here is to protect the minor from an unreasonable settlement and to ensure that the funds will be used for the benefit of the minor.

Note that all settlements for minors must be court approved – even those with a value of less than $10,000.  The statute does not require an in-person court appearance in cases involving less than $10,000, but court approval is still required.