While children with cerebral palsy may live with certain physical disabilities, these do not have to limit them. They deserve to be comfortable and as mobile as possible, especially in their own homes. Fortunately, the right home modifications can help your child feel empowered and independent while improving their quality of life.
Common Home Modifications Needed
Home modifications are considered structural, functional, or environmental changes that allow a disabled person greater ability to enter, utilize, or access certain spaces. Because cerebral palsy encompasses a wide range of movement and mobility disorders, your home modifications will be unique to your child’s specific needs.
Some of the most common home modifications necessary for children with this condition include the following:
- The addition of a ramp so that the child can circumvent stairs to get into and out of the home
- A lowered sink for children in wheelchairs
- Spacing out furniture in the home so children can move more freely around in wheelchairs
- Moving wall sockets or light switches to make them more easily accessible
- Stairlifts or elevator to get up and down the different floors of the home
- The addition of handrails or grab bars in certain areas of the home
- The use of carpet or anti-skid flooring
- Refrigerators with sliding doors
- Security systems or emergency buttons to help parents keep an eye on their children
Government Regulations on Housing Accessibility
It’s important for families and caregivers of children with cerebral palsy to understand what laws apply to their homes. According to the Fair Housing Act Guidelines issued by the Department of Housing & Urban Development, all buildings (including privately-owned and rented homes) to have:
- An accessible building entrance on an accessible route
- Accessible public and common areas
- Usable doors for wheelchairs
- Light switches, electrical outlets, thermostats and other electrical systems in accessible locations of the home
- Reinforced walls that can hold grab bars
- Usable kitchens and bathrooms (for wheelchair users)
If your child developed cerebral palsy as a result of a doctor or medical provider’s negligence, you may be entitled to pursue a birth injury case to cover the costs of your damages, including home modifications. Contact Angel Law at (503) 862-8666 to speak with our legal team for free today.