Judge wary of laptops for children
A judge has changed his mind on handing out money in compensation cases to fund laptop computers for children because of recent controversy about cyber-bullying.
Circuit Court Judge John O’Hagan has previously recommended amounts be released to children awarded settlements in court.
Children receiving money in compensation cases cannot receive cash from the courts until they are 18.
But Judge O’Hagan told Letterkenny Circuit Court in Co Donegal he was now reluctant to give out money for the purchase of laptops, unless parents agreed.
He said he was aware of how sites such as Facebook can be used as “ammunition” by some.
He made his comments as the mother of a 13-year-old girl said she did not want money for a laptop computer for her child.
The child had been awarded €18,000 in an injuries settlement and Judge O’Hagan ordered €300 be given to the girl for clothes.
“If the parents agree, fine.
“If the parents are not, I’m reluctant,” he said.
He also made a settlement of €500 to be given as part of a larger settlement for a 16-year-old boy for an electric guitar.