If a bouncy castle injury has set you back, we'll help you move forward

If you are the parent or guardian of a child injured on a bouncy castle, or if you were injured when you were under 18, we can help. If the injuries were caused by someone else, such as a business owner, you may be entitled to claim compensation.

You can make a claim on behalf of a child at any time up to their 18th birthday. An injured child has another three years, until the date of their 21st birthday, to make own claim if they choose. A personal injury solicitor can help you make a claim for No Win, No Fee compensation.

With over 10,000 bouncy castle injuries each year, you are not alone

Over the last decade, bouncy castle-related accidents involving children have shown a fifteen-fold increase.

According to a recent report, 10,000 children are injured on bouncy castles every year (telegraph.co.uk).

4,000 of these incidents occur while playing on inflatables in private homes.

43% of all bouncy castle injuries are sustained in fall, often by children bouncing off the inflatable and on to the ground.

If you decide to make a bouncy castle accident claim, your personal injury solicitor will take you through every step of the claims process. Your solicitor will be with you until you secure the compensation you or your child needs to move forwards after an injury.

Do I qualify for bouncy castle accident compensation?

If you've been injured or made ill in the last three years and it wasn't your fault, then you will be entitled to claim compensation for bouncy castle accident.

Use our injury claim calculator to find out if you can claim. Alternatively, you can speak to a claims advisor on 0800 376 1001 and find out if you have a claim in minutes.

Compensation claims with shared fault

It's not unusual for personal injury claims to involve fault on both sides.

In our 2024 Personal Injury Claimant Survey, we found that 13.99% of respondents felt they had at least some responsibility for the injuries they sustained.

Even if you partly caused the accident or your injuries (refered to as 'contributory negligence'), you may still be entitled to make a claim. These claims can often be settled on the basis of a split liability agreement.

Read more:

Can I claim if I feel I was partly responsible for my accident?

How long do I have to make a bouncy castle injury claim?

For most injury claims, you have up to 3 years from the date of your injury to start the claims process.

The 3 year limitation period does not apply to minors (under 18s). A parent, guardian or litigation friend can start a claim on a child's behalf up to their 18th birthday and the child has until their 21st birthday to claim for themselves.

How much compensation can I claim for a bouncy castle injury?

The amount of money you could claim for your injury will depend on:

  • the seriousness of your injury, and
  • any financial losses or costs you have incurred.

At the start of your claim, your solicitor will consider the many ways your injuries have affected your life. Your solicitor will take these considerations into account to calculate the correct compensation award.

Bouncy castle injury compensation calculator

Get an accurate compensation estimate (including for multiple injuries), confirm your legal position, and check if you have a No Win, No Fee claim.

Updated April 2024 Compensation Calculator v3.04

General damages

General damages are awarded for pain, suffering and loss of amenity (PSLA).

Awards for general damages are set by the Judicial College (judiciary.uk) and published in their guidelines for personal injury awards.

How is compensation calculated if I have multiple injuries?

Special damages

Special damages is compensation awarded to cover any financial losses and expenses you incur as a result of your bouncy castle injury or negligent medical treatment. These damages aim to put you back in the financial position you would have been in, had your injury not occurred.

Special damages will also cover your medical treatment expenses, that might include diagnostic imaging tests, physical therapy and pain medication.

Read more:

A complete list of recoverable losses in a personal injury claim

Recognised bouncy castle hazards

The operator of a bouncy castle cannot easily take precautions against some of the issues described below, such as children fighting on the inflatable.

In many cases, however, the operator is likely to be responsible for accidents sustained as a result of use of the bouncy castle.

The following hazards have been identified:

  • instability and blowing away in windy conditions
  • injury to users caused by wearing inappropriate clothes and shoes
  • overcrowding or not separating larger users (adults and older children) from smaller children
  • injury to users caused by boisterous behaviour
  • situations caused by bouncy castles deflating through loss of pressure
  • windows tearing or detaching
  • tripping over guy ropes or anchorages
  • electrical hazards (e.g. electric shock or burns injuries)
  • inadequate means of escape in case of fire
  • lifting injuries caused by manual handling
  • suffocation
  • entrapment
  • access to dangerous machinery (e.g. inadequately protected, or unguarded air pumps or generators)

If you or a member of your family has been injury as a result of any of the above factors, it may be possible to make a claim.

See also:

Burn injury claims

Electric shock injury claims

Equipment risks and applicable legislation

Bouncy castle controllers and operators have obligations under Health and Safety legislation to ensure that both children and adults using their equipment do so with minimum risk.

As a requirement of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999, controllers or operators of bouncy castles must carry out a risk assessment of their activities to determine control measures to avoid risk or reduce risk to acceptable levels.

The manufacturer's information and instructions for safe operation should help with this and should be readily available for reference.

The "controller" is defined as the person, organisation or hirer having the overall control - including responsibility for maintenance - of the bouncy castle

An operator is the person (over 18 years) appointed by the controller to be in charge of the operation of the inflatable at any time when it is intended to be available for public use.

The Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and subsequent regulations require all inflatable play equipment "designed to be used by members of the public for entertainment purposes either as a slide or for bouncing upon" to be tested at suitable intervals by a competent person.

In addition, the Provision of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER) require inflatable devices to be inspected at suitable intervals to ensure that safe conditions are maintained, and that any deterioration in the device is detected and remedial action taken in good time.

Reducing user risks

Safety equipment

When a bouncy castle is in use there are other measures that should be checked to ensure it is safe to use.

The castle should be securely anchored to prevent it blowing over. If on hard ground it should have mooring straps attached to solid points.

Impact absorbing mats should be positioned at the open side of the castle and extend sufficiently to prevent children hitting hard ground if they bounce out of the castle.

An inadequate safety equipment claim is likely to succeed if it can be demonstrated that the operator was negligent in this respect.

Read more:

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) injury claims

Supervision

At least one competent person should be constantly supervising users of the play equipment.

Attendants must be over 16 and appointed to work under the control and direction of an operator to assist in the operation of the inflatable device.

Attendants must also follow maximum load recommendations to prevent children bumping into each other.

Children of different ages or sizes may need to be separated to avoid larger children crushing smaller ones.

Users should be instructed to remove sharp articles of clothing like shoes, buckles and jewellery and this should be enforced.

Attendants should control children to prevent horseplay that could lead to injury; children must also be deterred from climbing the walls.

Hiring a bouncy castle privately

The hire company should provide detailed guidelines on the safe positioning and use of a bouncy castle, including protecting children from electrical equipment.

The person hiring the castle may be required to take responsibility for supervision of children when it is in use.

For more information about claiming for bouncy castle-related injuries at a private event, it is recommended that you speak to a solicitor about your options as soon as possible.

Making a claim for an injury on behalf of a child

A parent or guardian making a claim for compensation on behalf of a child under 18 is referred to as a 'litigation friend'.

The claim may be brought with the assistance of the litigation friend before the child turns 18.

After that date, the claimant then has 3 years in which to bring a claim themselves.

Public liability claims

Bouncy castle accident claims are usually referred to as public place, or occupiers' liability, claims. Click on the icons below to learn more:

No win, no fee bouncy castle injury compensation claims

With no win, no fee, you can claim bouncy castle injury compensation without financial risk. If your claim isn't successful, you pay nothing. If you win, you only pay a pre-agreed percentage of your compensation.

Find out more about how no win, no fee claims work

Get expert advice now

Interested in talking to an injury specialist about your claim?

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Call 0800 376 1001

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Citations

Source: (reviewed: 12/12/2023)

Gaynor Haliday, Legal researcher

Author:
Gaynor Haliday, Legal researcher