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Articles Posted in Personal Injury

Non-profit organizations regularly hold functions for members and patrons. People attending such events typically expect them to be safe. Unfortunately, though, it is not uncommon for incidents to occur during non-profit social events, and in many instances, they are the result of negligence. While there are laws that protect non-profit organizations from liability, they only apply in certain circumstances, as explained in a recent New York opinion. If you were injured in an accident brought about by another person’s negligence, it would benefit you to meet with a Syracuse personal injury lawyer to evaluate your options for seeking damages.

Factual Background and Procedural History

It is alleged that the plaintiff attended a summit organized by the defendant academy at the defendant church. During the event, one man threw a bag to another; the man catching the bag fell backward into the plaintiff, causing him to fall and sustain injuries. The plaintiff and his wife filed a lawsuit seeking damages against various defendants, including the president of the defendant academy and the defendant church.

Reportedly, the president of the defendant academy moved for summary judgment, claiming immunity under Not-for-Profit Corporation Law § 720-a. The defendant church also moved for summary judgment, arguing it couldn’t be held liable for the actions of the two men as they were unforeseeable and spontaneous. The plaintiffs also sought partial summary judgment on liability against the man who fell into him and dismissal of the defendants’ affirmative defenses. Additionally, the defendant church and the defendant man requested bifurcation of the trial into liability and damages phases. Continue Reading ›

Home health care aides are expected to ensure that the people they assist are safe an well taken care of; unfortunately, however, they do not always possess the skills and training needed to do so, and falls and other harmful incidents often occur in their presence. While companies and individuals that provide home health care may offer medical services, merely because their negligence causes an injury does not mean that they will be liable for medical malpractice, as discussed in a recent New York case. If you were hurt in a fall, it is prudent to confer with a Syracuse personal injury attorney about your rights.

Facts and Procedure of the Case

It is reported that the plaintiff, the decedent’s son, entered into a contract with the defendant home health care company (Company) in June 2017 for home healthcare services for the decedent. The plaintiff, along with his girlfriend, left the decedent in the care of the defendant home health aide (Aide) on June 11, 2017. Upon their return 15 minutes later, they found the decedent on the floor near her bed.

Allegedly the Aide, who was present until the end of her shift, did not file an incident report, as required by the Company, and did not contact the Company. The plaintiff initiated legal action, alleging negligence by the Company in providing care and supervision and asserting claims of negligent hiring, training, and supervision. The defendant moved for summary judgment. Continue Reading ›

When we send our children to school, we put a lot of faith in the adults who will be watching over them all day. All too often, school and staff members’ negligence results in serious injuries to children. It is the responsibility of schools to provide a safe environment for students. That does not imply that they must guarantee that students will not be harmed. However, if they fail to meet accepted standards of care, they may be considered negligent. And if that negligence resulted in an otherwise avoidable injury, the school may be liable in a personal injury lawsuit, even if the injury was unintentional. Some injuries at school are inevitable. Nonetheless, the law requires teachers and school administrators to do everything possible to avoid such accidents. If they fail to meet this responsibility and an accident occurs, the school will almost certainly be held liable for the child’s injuries. Even if the school or a school employee didn’t directly cause a child’s injury, the school district might still be legally responsible.

Although schools are generally safe places, students can and do get hurt on the playground, during football practice, or in fights. There are other types of injuries, such as emotional or academic problems caused by harassment or abuse. When a child comes home from school hurt, most parents are eager to understand how such a thing could have happened. It is critical to understand how accidents occur and how schools may be held liable for injuries sustained while under their supervision. The facts of the case will determine whether the school or another third party can be held liable. If your child was injured at school, it is always best to consult with a personal injury attorney. DeFrancisco & Falgiatano strives for the best possible outcome in every case. We understand how important your child and family are, and how much harm can be caused by a school’s negligence. We have over 30 years of courtroom experience fighting for victim compensation. With offices in several convenient locations, we assist injured children and their families throughout Upstate New York. Our extensive experience in the field of medical malpractice is reflected in the outcomes we have obtained for our clients.

Sprains, slips and falls, bruises/cuts, dislocations, fractures/broken bones, sports injuries, head injuries, school bus accidents, violence, school crossing injuries, food poisoning, faulty playground equipment, and bullying are some of the most common injuries children sustain at school. Each of these circumstances could support a finding of liability. If the school failed to remove ice and snow from its walkways or failed to keep a staircase in a safe condition, the parents of a child who slipped and fell may be able to sue. If school coaches or teachers fail to properly supervise children participating in sports, or if they provide children with inappropriate equipment, they may be held liable. A premises liability claim may be appropriate when a child is injured on the playground as a result of a dangerous property condition. Injuries on playgrounds can also occur due to insufficient supervision and equipment. In cases where defective equipment was involved, you may have a defective product claim against the equipment’s manufacturer in addition to or instead of the school.

Personal injury law covers a wide variety of cases that involve injuries caused by another person or party. A personal injury claim is brought against someone whose negligence caused you harm. Common examples include vehicle accidents, slip and fall cases, dog bites, and medical malpractice.  Personal injury laws allow victims to seek compensation for their injuries and damages. Most personal injury claims are based on the legal theory of negligence. Negligence is the failure to exercise the same level of care that a person of reasonable prudence would use in the same or similar situation.  It is always best to consult with an experienced Syracuse personal injury lawyer as soon as possible to ensure your rights are protected.

Personal injury claims are numerous, there are millions of injuries every year. A personal injury claim will detail a victim’s claims against someone and the damages they are demanding. These cases often involve a lengthy legal process in addition to any recovery from injury. Many of these cases end in settlement, while others end up going to trial before a jury. Before you can recover compensation for an accident claim, you must prove each of the elements of a negligence claim:

  • The other party owed a duty of care to you.

Generally, people who suffer harm in the workplace cannot pursue personal injury claims against their employers and instead are limited to recovering workers’ compensation benefits. They can seek damages from other parties that may be responsible for their harm, however. Further, in some instances, the law allows for the absolute imposition of liability for harm suffered while working. This was illustrated in a recent New York case in which the court granted summary judgment in favor of the plaintiff due to the defendant’s violation of New York’s scaffold law. If you were injured in an accident caused by another party’s negligence, you might be owed damages, and it is smart to meet with a Syracuse personal injury attorney to assess your rights.

The Facts of the Case

It is reported that the plaintiff, who worked for a plumbing company, suffered injuries when he fell while installing a shower curtain rod in a bathroom. He did not have adequate room to use an A-frame ladder and instead stood on the rim of the bathtub. The bathroom did not have artificial lighting and was dim. The plaintiff struck his head on the rod and fell to the floor.

Allegedly, the plaintiff filed a lawsuit against the general contractor and lessee, asserting, among other things, that there were liable under New york’s scaffold law. The court granted the motion with regard to the scaffold law claim, and the defendants appealed. Continue Reading ›

Horses are often thought of as gentle giants, and many people living in New York take pleasure in riding them. Even the most well-trained horses can be unpredictable, though, and there is an inherent risk in horseback riding. As such, a person that suffers harm while riding a horse may have difficulty proving that their harm is compensable. Recently, a New York court issued an opinion discussing the assumption of the risks that accompany riding horses in a case in which the defendant argued it could not be deemed responsible for the plaintiff’s harm. If you were hurt while engaging in a recreational activity, it is in your best interest to speak to a Syracuse personal injury lawyer regarding what damages you may be owed.

The Plaintiff’s Harm

Allegedly, the plaintiff visited the defendant ranch to go on a horseback ride. Prior to the ride, she signed numerous documents, including an assumption of risk form. She subsequently embarked on two rides. On her second ride, a wrangler horse from another group became loose. The wrangler horse bumped the plaintiff’s horse and pulled the plaintiff’s reins from her hands. She held onto the saddle, but as the horse began to run, she fell, suffering a broken rib and arm and a contusion to her hip.

It is reported that the plaintiff filed a lawsuit against the defendant in which she argued that the failure to warn her of the risk of a stampede or to prevent or mitigate the stampede constituted negligence. The defendant moved for the dismissal of the plaintiff’s claims through summary judgment, arguing that she assumed the risk of harm. Continue Reading ›

Syracuse car accident cases often come down to the question of which party (or, sometimes, which eyewitness) to believe. If one party says he was rear-ended while stopped at a traffic light and this testimony is unopposed, he or she may be granted partial summary judgment; in such a situation, a trial will only be necessary if the parties disagree on the issue of damages.

However, if the opposing party or another witness claims that the accident happened when one party abruptly darted in front of the other and stopped unnecessarily, the case will probably proceed toward a jury trial on the question of fault. After all, one of the main duties of a jury member is to resolve factual inconsistencies by deciding who to believe when the parties disagree about what happened.

Facts of the Case

In a case appealed from the Supreme Court of Bronx County, the plaintiff was a man who alleged that he was injured as a result of the negligence of the defendant bus driver. He also asserted a claim against the bus driver’s employer, most likely asserting a claim of vicarious liability (although the exact details of this portion of the case was not explained in the appeal). According to the plaintiff, the accident occurred when he was stopped at an intersection and rear-ended by the bus.

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In most Syracuse car accident cases that are not settled prior to trial, the amount of money damages to which an injured person is entitled is a matter to be determined by the jury. There are multiple factors to be considered in assessing the amount due, and the jury does have a fair amount of latitude in making its determination.

This is not to say, however, that the plaintiff’s fate in completely in the hands of the jury. There are certain checks on the system, including the possibility that the amount awarded by the jury may be set aside by an appellate court. When this happens, the reviewing court may issue what is called an “additur” or a “remittitur,” in which a more reasonable amount is suggested and, if the parties agree, the judgment is then modified to reflect the agreed upon amount.

If the opposing party does not agree to the suggested award, he or she has the option of appealing the matter further or having the matter returned to the trial court for a new trial.

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Many Syracuse personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits are brought by individuals asserting that other people have been negligent. “Negligence” simply means that someone has breached a duty of care owed to another person, thereby causing damages.

Negligence cases can also be filed against businesses and governmental entities – even school districts (both public and private). The inquiry is the same: was a duty breached, causing harm to the plaintiff? If so, the plaintiff can seek compensation for things like medical expenses, lost income, and pain and suffering.

Of course, there are some potential defenses to a negligence claim. Once such defense is that the plaintiff knew and understood the risks of a certain activity and chose to engage in it anyway. A defendant who can prove “assumption of the risk” may have a good legal argument against being held responsible for harm to a plaintiff who might otherwise be entitled to substantial financial compensation.

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