Injured - The FindLaw Accident, Injury and Tort Law Blog

September 2012 Archives

A Medieval Times lawsuit claims a swashbuckling sword fight caused a customer's eye injury and left him permanently blinded.

Dustin Wiseman, 37, of Estelline, S.D., and his wife Melissa were on their honeymoon in California. They had front-row seats to a staged sword fight at the popular dinner theater in Buena Park, Calif., in April 2011, the Associated Press reports.

But when the sword fight took place, a shard from a titanium sword hit Dustin in the left eye. It tore through his cornea and went into his retina, leaving him blinded for life.

UC Davis Pepper Spray Suit Settled for $1M

Without admitting any fault, the University of California agreed to fork over about $1 million to a group of students who were pepper sprayed by campus police at UC Davis.

The million-dollar settlement ends a lawsuit brought by 21 students and former students who sued the school last year.

As part of the settlement, each of the 21 students will receive $30,000. The students will also receive assistance and counseling for "academic performance issues that allegedly arose" from the incident, reports The Sacramento Bee.

'Million Dollar Money Drop' Show Sued by Contestant

A couple has brought a lawsuit against the Fox game show Million Dollar Money Drop for "tricking" them out of a $580,000 prize, reports TMZ.

Back in 2011, Andrew and Patricia Murray appeared on the game show and were asked the question: "According to the data security firm IMPERVA, what is the most common computer password?"

The answer choices were:

A) Password B) 123456 C) I Love You

Joplin Walmart Sued by Tornado Victim's Family

Stanley Kirk had stopped at a local Walmart to buy some golf equipment when the tornado sirens went off in Joplin, Mo., in May 2011.

Kirk, 62, died from injuries he sustained at the Walmart during that tornado. His surviving wife and daughter have filed a wrongful death suit against the retail giant for its part in his death. The suit claims that the store wasn't properly constructed and that employees directed Kirk and other customers to unsafe areas in the store.

The suit isn't claiming that Walmart and its staff tried to kill Kirk. Rather, it alleges their negligence led to his death which could make them civilly liable.

'Popcorn Lung' Leads to $7 Million Verdict

Everyone knows that popcorn kernels can get stuck in your teeth but Wayne Watson learned the hard way that exposure to artificial butter can lead to popcorn lung. A jury verdict in his favor will hopefully alert customers to the potential negative health effects of butter flavoring.

Watson developed respiratory problems in 2007. Doctors diagnosed him with 'popcorn lung,' a disease that is more commonly seen in popcorn plant workers, according to TIME.

Defense attorneys argued that the disease wasn't caused by popcorn. The jury wasn't convinced.

Cops Stopped at 7-11 While Answering 911 Call?

The family of a Deanna Cook has brought a lawsuit against the City of Dallas and its police department for the alleged mishandling of a 911 call and the ultimate death of the woman.

Cook called 911 screaming for help. Instead of immediate assistance, it's claimed that Cook's call went to a holding queue, and that once it was answered, a 911 operator took 10 minutes to file a dispatch request, reports CBS.

To make matters worse, 11 minutes into the call, the operator disconnected the call and tried to call back only to receive Ms. Cook's voicemail. The 911 dispatcher allegedly never tried to follow up on the call to ensure police responded.

A golf-course bird attack allegedly caused a Hawaii man's injury, and now he wants the county to pay.

Ray Sakamura of Wailuku, Hawaii, was golfing at the Waiehu Golf Course on the island of Maui in January when a large bird, described in his lawsuit as a "duck/goose," allegedly attacked him, Hawaii's KHNL/KGMB-TV reports.

Sakamura tried to back away, but fell and hurt his back, his lawsuit asserts. The large bird bit his hand hard and caused bleeding.

So why is Maui County being sued?

Plastic Surgeon Posted Before, After Breast Pics?

Ten women have joined together to sue their plastic surgeon even though they're satisfied with her work. What they're not happy about is how she posted before and after photos of their breast surgery on the internet.

All the women involved in the suit had breast augmentation surgery with Dr. Michele Koo of Kirkwood, Missouri. Doctors often post before and after photos for potential patients to see their work but in this case the photos crossed a line.

The women found their photos online, along with the photos of many other patients, because the pictures were linked to their names. That means their privacy was compromised.

Two teenagers were all aglow as they partied, but their NYC rave lawsuit claims a "toxic" swimming pool with glow-in-the-dark water left them "blinded."

Rocio Marie Cabrera and Sarah Deodath, both 19, claim to have suffered "permanent reduction of visibility in both eyes" after frolicking in an indoor swimming pool at a Brooklyn rave in August, the New York Post reports.

Organizers of the "Return to the Bubble Kingdom" bash are responsible because they dumped chemicals into the pool to make it glow under blacklights, the ravers' lawsuit claims.

Boy Scouts Sex Abuse Scandal Signal the End?

The Boy Scouts of America are embroiled in a child sex abuse scandal.

Similar to Penn State University and the Catholic Church, the Boy Scouts are accused of not reporting allegations of child sex abuse to the police and also of covering up instances of abuse, reports Reuters.

The Catholic Church was able to survive the sex abuse scandal as they have millions of congregants and deep pockets to pay off the lawsuits. It's still unsure how Penn State University will survive its sex abuse scandal (its football program has certainly been altered).

And depending upon how many lawsuits are brought against the Boy Scouts, the organization could be seriously harmed, if not irreparably so, by the likely litigation.

Should I Accept an Insurance Settlement for My Injuries?

We all expect insurance to cover our injuries in the event of an accident but when a claim goes to settlement what actually happens can be different.

Insurance is a business and that means maximizing profits when possible. It also means the settlement process is often a negotiation.

If you're been injured in a car crash or other accident and your insurance offers a settlement, it's hard to know if the amount is right. But there are some strategies that can help you get the money you deserve.

How to Deal With Your Neighbor's Poison Ivy Plant

Some people are blessed with great neighbors but others of us have neighbors that won't even remove the poison ivy plants that spill over onto your property.

Border plants can be difficult to deal with since they often don't just stay on one side of the property line. If those plants are poisoning or dangerous to your health it's even more frustrating.

But just because it's spilling onto your property doesn't mean you can pull it out at the roots. If you don't follow the rules you could end up in legal trouble.

FAMU Blames Robert Champion for His Death

Florida A&M University was sued by the family of the late Robert Champion for their part in the death of the 26-year-old drum major. But in a motion to dismiss filed Monday the school is claiming that Champion's death is his own fault.

The motion alleges that as an adult Champion knew that participating in the hazing was against school policy and state law. As a result the school should not be liable for his actions, reports USA Today.

That's an interesting argument, but whether it's enough to get the case against FAMU dismissed remains to be seen.

Penis Amputation Appeal: Dr. Didn't Have to Do it

A Kentucky man walked into a hospital for a circumcision. A doctor ended up cutting a lot more off than the tip, and gave the man a penis amputation.

Not surprisingly, the 60-some-year-old Phillip Seaton sued the doctor for his amputated penis. After a jury ruled for the doctor, Seaton appealed.

On appeal, Seaton claims that he should have had an opportunity to review his options prior to the penis amputation. However, the doctor maintains his claims that he did what was necessary after finding cancer in the penis. Additionally, the doctor says that Seaton signed a pre-surgery medical consent authorizing the amputation, reports The Associated Press.

Parents Liable for Not Vaccinating Children?

More parents than ever are not vaccinating their children against common childhood diseases, citing both religious and medical reasons. But that choice not to vaccinate could make those parents liable if their unvaccinated child makes someone else sick.

This may sound like a remote possibility but there is already a relevant law on the books.

Courts have punished people for spreading STDs without notifying their sex partner and in the past we're punished people who spread infectious diseases that should be quarantined. It's not a big jump to extend that law to people who fail to get vaccinated.

How Much is My Pet's Injury Worth?

Personal injury lawsuits aren't just for when you get hurt; they can also cover accidents when your pet gets hurt.

The pet itself can't bring an injury claim, but most courts recognize the value that pets bring to our lives. Depending on the circumstances of the situation, the court may compensate you for the cost of treating the injury or the financial loss if your pet is killed.

In some circumstances judges will also provide damages for emotional pain, although they probably won't say that's what it's for.

How Old is Too Old to Drive?

The debate over older driver laws and just how old is too old to drive was brought up this week when a 100-year-old driver backed his Cadillac into a group of school children in Los Angeles.

Fortunately, no one was killed in the accident, but the incident probably brought up memories of near misses you have had with older drivers.

Too often, we've heard stories of older drivers running red lights, failing to see stop signs, and just generally reacting slowly in causing accidents. As a result, many may be wondering whether an older driver law should be passed to take the keys away from drivers once they hit a certain age, reports The Associated Press.

If you’re ever hurt while on a bike trail, your instinct may be to immediately start gearing up for a bike trail lawsuit. But not so fast.

Depending on where your injury took place and the chain of events that led up to your accident, your attempt at getting compensation for a bike trail injury may fall flat in court.

That’s why it’s a good idea to consult an experienced personal injury attorney to spot potential legal obstacles to winning your bike trail lawsuit. Here are three common issues that may affect your case:

Teen Dies After Sticking Head Out of Party Bus

A teenager who stuck his head out of a party bus in New Jersey was killed in an accident. Could a wrongful death lawsuit follow?

Daniel Fernandez, 16, was headed to a friend's Sweet 16 birthday party on a double-decker party bus filled with about 65 people. En route to the party, Fernandez was apparently goofing around and stuck his head out a roof hatch on top of the bus, reports the New York Daily News.

Just as he stuck his head out, the bus drove under an overpass. Fernandez's head hit the bottom of the overpass, and he was killed.

HS Football Coach's Extreme Practice Gets Him Sued

Vince DeDario is facing a lawsuit over allegations that his coaching strategy endangered a high school football player two years ago.

Keemo Richardson was a freshman at John Adams High School in the fall of 2009 when the team suffered an embarrassing loss to their rival. After the team got back to Adams High, Coach DeDario called an immediate practice because of the team's poor performance.

Team members were allegedly told to break the legs of a tackling dummy, reports Business Insider. The problem is that the 'tackling dummy' was alive.

Body-painting model Zoe West's NYC lawsuit over her naked arrest in Times Square has been settled, her lawyer tells the New York Post. Let us paint you a picture of what set off this dispute:

West's skin provided the canvas for a street artist who painted the 5-foot-2 model from head to toe in August 2011. Police moved in and busted West, 22, apparently for baring it all in public.

But that arrest was unlawful, and led to some humiliating treatment by ogling cops, her lawyer alleged in a false-arrest lawsuit.

The Worst Drivers in America

"Where did you learn how to drive?" It's a familiar refrain across the country. Fed up motorists claim the worst drivers in America live in their town. Whether you're proud of your city's bad driving or try to ignore it, it's still there.

Bad drivers aren't just the butt of bad jokes. They're also a serious hazard to your health and your car insurance cost.

Allstate knows all about it. They've just published a list of where the best and worst drivers live. If you're wondering why your premium is so high you may not have to wonder much longer.