Injured - The FindLaw Accident, Injury and Tort Law Blog


The parents of a deceased 16-year-old high school student in Chicago have sued the police, school, and individually involved personnel, as a result of their son's suicide. Corey Walgren jumped from the fifth floor of a parking garage after being interrogated by the school's police liaison and school's dean regarding an alleged crime.

It is alleged that Corey was threatened with possession and distribution of child pornography charges, and told he would have to register on the sex offender registry, while being interrogated at school. After the interrogation ended, while his mother was en route to pick him up from school, Corey walked out of the school's office and into a downtown Naperville parking garage, where he climbed to the fifth floor and jumped. He did not pass until later that day.

In February 2015, two drunk drivers crashed head-on in Staten Island, New York, which left William Cuffee, a passenger in of the driver's vehicles, brain damaged and severely injured. Cuffee's mother, who now cares for her son, recently filed a lawsuit against both drivers, as well as the pair of establishments one driver was drinking in prior to the crash that night.

The drivers each pleaded guilty to separate criminal charges related to the incident. However, when a person convicted on criminal charges caused injury to another person while in the process of committing a crime, a criminal conviction may not be the end of it as they can be sued in civil court as well. Cuffee's mother had to sue on his behalf as the court declared him incapacitated.

On December 1, 2016, Lindsey Rietveld was shopping at the Walmart store where she worked in Pella, Iowa, when a Ford F-150 pickup truck came crashing through the front door of the store. The truck struck and killed Ms. Rietveld and two others. As a result of the fatal crash, Rietveld's estate has filed a lawsuit against Walmart, the driver of the truck, and the architectural designer of the front of the store. The lawsuit claims the lack of barriers is to blame for the wrongful death.

The driver of the truck told police that he choked on a sip of coffee, passed out, and woke up after crashing through the front of the store. As a result of suffering the medical emergency, the driver was not charged criminally.

Boats, many of which lack brakes, seat belts, and airbags, can be just as dangerous as cars. And a recent lawsuit in Washington details just how dangerous they can be.

The surviving family members of a man who drowned in a boating accident at Lake Coeur d'Alene last summer claim the man piloting another boat wasn't paying attention after dark and plowed right through a stationary boat, killing three people. The wrongful death lawsuit also claims the man behind the wheel, Dennis Magner, lied to investigators about who was driving at the time of the crash.

A Florida woman was awarded $100,000 by a jury in her case against Starbucks stemming from a 2014 hot coffee spill injury. Joanne Mogavero, a 43-year-old mother of three, filed suit after the lid to her coffee popped off while it was being handed to her from the Starbucks drive-thru window. The 20-oz.190 degree coffee spilled in her lap, resulting in first and second degree burns.

Of the $100,000 jury verdict, a little over $15,000 was awarded for the actual medical expenses, while the remainder was awarded for pain and suffering. Starbucks has stated that the company is considering appealing the verdict.

Wrongful death lawsuits allow surviving spouses and family to recover financially when a spouse or family member dies due to the negligence or intentional act of another. Wrongful death laws will vary from state to state, but will typically only allow immediate family members, or next of kin, to file the claim. This often results in unmarried individuals being unable to recover for wrongful death claims.

The common exception to this involves states that allow registered domestic partners, which used to be common for same-sex couples prior the nationwide legalization of same-sex marriage. However, frequently, older couples will register as domestic partners rather than re-marry after a divorce, or a prior spouse died, for a wide variety of social and economic reasons.

Criminal convictions can make nearly every facet of a person's life miserable. Even minor criminal convictions that people don't ordinarily even consider criminal, like traffic tickets, can upend a person's life.

Sadly, when it comes to a civil injury case, criminal convictions can matter significantly. While not all convictions will have a significant impact, more recent and more serious convictions are likely to pose more of a challenge. It is important to note, however, that state laws will vary regarding what kinds of convictions can be used in both civil and criminal courts and when.

In 2013, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, an unsecured brick wall on a demolition site collapsed onto the adjacent Salvation Army store. The three to four story brick wall crushed the store, killed seven individuals, and injured 12 others, affecting a total of 19 families. A mass injury, wrongful death lawsuit filed in response concluded earlier this year.

The victims were awarded $227 million by a settlement in February, after a 17-week long trial, while the jury was still deliberating. The jury found the Salvation Army, as well as the demolition site's owner, and the architect and contractor doing the demolition, liable for the collapse, deaths, and injuries. Of the $227 million, $200 million will be paid by the Salvation Army, while the remainder will be paid by the demolition site's owner. However, none of the victims or families have been paid yet as the damages were not apportioned.

The hospitals in VA health system are just as susceptible to the same type of medical malpractice claims as any other hospital. However, due to the fact that the VA system is both overburdened and underfunded, those hospitals may also face claims for injuries related to delays in treatment.

Regardless of whether the injury is the result of hospital negligence, medical malpractice, or just ordinary negligence, veterans can sue the VA in court. A recent medical malpractice settlement against a VA hospital neared seven figures. In that case, a veteran underwent an unneeded surgery that caused him further, and life changing, injuries.

This week, in a Chicago courtroom, a judge handed down a massive, record setting, $23.1 million malpractice verdict against a neonatologist. The verdict, according to the plaintiff's attorney, is believed to be the largest birth injury verdict handed down by a judge (as compared to a jury verdict).

The verdict was awarded to the parents of a five year old girl that will suffer from a lifetime of health issues as a result of the medical malpractice. Although the hospital was not found to be negligent, it will be footing the bill for $21 million, while the doctor, who was found negligent, pays the remaining $2 million himself.