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Sue or Not?
Old 12-23-2017, 08:14 PM   #1
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Sue or Not?

I think it's too late now but i'm wondering if my Grandmother should have sued and what you would do. A little over 3 years ago my Grandmother tripped over the steel plate below the sliding door at the grocery store and broke her hip. I'm not sure there was any negligence on the stores part but she probably still could have sued. Should she have? About 8 months ago she went to the hospital for an unrelated leg injury. After getting treatment, she fell while walking out of the waiting room area and no staff offered to help her or see if she was ok. She just went home. The next day she couldn't get out of bed. She used her life alert and went to the hospital where they discovered she broke her back in three places. She says it could only have happened during her fall at the hospital. She decided not to pursue damages against the hospital. Should she have. What would you do? Is it too late to do anything about it now? She is partially paralyzed from the surgery to "fix" her broken back.
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Old 12-23-2017, 08:21 PM   #2
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U should talk to a lawyer for advise to see if u have a case
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Old 12-23-2017, 08:35 PM   #3
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I have not idea....

But I am with you... what did they do wrong? I can understand if the floor is wet or there is a grape or something that you slip on, but just falling down, or tripping on something that is normal I do not think you much of a case...

But I have been surprised with some of the cases that have been won over the years...
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Old 12-23-2017, 08:35 PM   #4
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I personally wouldn't have. Negligence is one thing, but just making a money grab goes against my (admittedly flexible) morality. Sometimes things just happen. I've known a few people who would never have sued but then they got approached by what I consider ambulance chasers, who convinced them they might be able to make a few bucks off somebody else. That gives me the willies.
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Old 12-23-2017, 09:08 PM   #5
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After getting treatment, she fell while walking out of the waiting room area and no staff offered to help her or see if she was ok. She just went home. The next day she couldn't get out of bed.
That's the negligence, no one helped, not the fall. Had the staff been notified and taken proper care, the back would likely still be broke, but extra damage to the spine/nerves may have occurred by getting up and moving in that condition. The question will be, how could/should the staff had known that the fall occurred? If anyone acknowledged the fall (Are you okay?) then they should have responded differently. If there's no way they would have known, then not much of a case. Of course, I'm not a lawyer but that's what I see in this situation.
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Old 12-23-2017, 09:18 PM   #6
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I say she should not have sued. The negligence is actually on her. She has shown to have a history of falling which means she needs assistance with mobility such as a walker or maybe even a scooter. After the fall at the waiting room she made the decision to go home, she could have easily called a ambulance if she thought she needed it.
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Old 12-23-2017, 10:26 PM   #7
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I say she should not have sued. The negligence is actually on her. She has shown to have a history of falling which means she needs assistance with mobility such as a walker or maybe even a scooter. After the fall at the waiting room she made the decision to go home, she could have easily called a ambulance if she thought she needed it.
+1
Falling is one of the common dangers of being old, everyone knows that.
Maybe she should sue her relatives for negligent care
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Old 12-23-2017, 10:35 PM   #8
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I vote no.
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Old 12-23-2017, 11:30 PM   #9
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That's the negligence, no one helped, not the fall. Had the staff been notified and taken proper care, the back would likely still be broke, but extra damage to the spine/nerves may have occurred by getting up and moving in that condition. The question will be, how could/should the staff had known that the fall occurred? If anyone acknowledged the fall (Are you okay?) then they should have responded differently. If there's no way they would have known, then not much of a case. Of course, I'm not a lawyer but that's what I see in this situation.

That would lead to a question of how long was she down and did anybody see it... unless OP was there to see what happened he does not know...

In the last few days I saw a woman fall at a strip center with major stores... she was not paying attention and stepped off the curb and fell... most people ignored her as she got up... but a lady in a car asked if she was OK... she said she was and got up and left... (I was farther away but heard the lady so I just kept walking when I got close)....

My mom fell today when picking her up... she was getting out of her building and the door is a bit heavy and she tripped on her walker... I just happened to be getting to the door when it happened so I was able to catch her so she did not hit hard.... but it was her trying to do something and tripping...
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Old 12-24-2017, 03:07 AM   #10
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I vote no. The stress of lawsuit in itself can cause further damage to an elderly patient. Who would gain from this action? Plus there's the bad Karma issue
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Old 12-24-2017, 05:52 AM   #11
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It sounds like she is old and unstable and is falling a lot. That is life, not negligence that warrants a suit. The hospital situation is ambiguous. I find it hard to believe that staff watched an old lady fall and ignored her. If they did, I would sue the shi*t out of them. More likely no one saw the fall so she got up unassisted. People often sue because they want someone to pay for their own mistakes or accidents. We all pay for that in our own insurance rates.
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Old 12-24-2017, 05:53 AM   #12
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I'm not sure there was any negligence on the stores part but she probably still could have sued. Should she have?

She decided not to pursue damages against the hospital. Should she have.

What would you do?
I would have Grandma make the decision. It sounds like she isn't lawsuit happy. Hopefully her relatives won't attempt to change that in her.

If she does decide to pursue the matters, she should talk with her attorney. Many would be happy to take on "negligence" cases, since they are the ones that stand to make a lot of money.

As far as what I would do - I'd stay out of my Grandma's business.
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Old 12-24-2017, 06:51 AM   #13
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I personally wouldn't have. Negligence is one thing, but just making a money grab goes against my (admittedly flexible) morality. Sometimes things just happen. I've known a few people who would never have sued but then they got approached by what I consider ambulance chasers, who convinced them they might be able to make a few bucks off somebody else. That gives me the willies.
+1

Sadly, falling is often a part of getting old.
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Old 12-24-2017, 06:56 AM   #14
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Grandma has at least two contributory factors: she falls, and she breaks bones easily. She probably has osteoporosis. I donít see any grounds for a lawsuit here.
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Old 12-24-2017, 06:58 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by aaronc879 View Post
I think it's too late now but i'm wondering if my Grandmother should have sued and what you would do. A little over 3 years ago my Grandmother tripped over the steel plate below the sliding door at the grocery store and broke her hip. I'm not sure there was any negligence on the stores part but she probably still could have sued. Should she have? About 8 months ago she went to the hospital for an unrelated leg injury. After getting treatment, she fell while walking out of the waiting room area and no staff offered to help her or see if she was ok. She just went home. The next day she couldn't get out of bed. She used her life alert and went to the hospital where they discovered she broke her back in three places. She says it could only have happened during her fall at the hospital. She decided not to pursue damages against the hospital. Should she have. What would you do? Is it too late to do anything about it now? She is partially paralyzed from the surgery to "fix" her broken back.
I'm not in favor of suing for simple accidents where the facility didn't contribute to the accident. That said, all sorts of "slip and fall" claims get paid all the time for things that us laypeople would think is just a simple accident... she might not need to sue... just make a claim.

Even if someone saw her fall at the hospital and helped her up and asked her if she was ok and she said yes and went on her way I can't see negligence... unless she was obviously in severe pain and obviously saying she was ok to not be a bother.
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Old 12-24-2017, 07:35 AM   #16
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I am also of the no lawsuit advice. As stated, your grandmother is not real stable and has fallen more than once. Specifically in a court, how can it be proved that the fall at the hospitall actually caused the broken back issues? Were there other falls or incidents that they would argue the injuries could be from other potential causes. If she had immediate medical care that showed an injury there would be evidence. However as many stated, when you are old your bones are weaker, and older people are more susceptible to falling. I don't see negligence as the cause.
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Old 12-24-2017, 07:37 AM   #17
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If there was no negligence what are the grounds for a lawsuit ? I doubt any self respecting lawyer would take this on a contingency basis and if you want to sue it may cost you more up front than anything you might get in return.
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Old 12-24-2017, 08:07 AM   #18
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You can sue for anything. You can successfully sue for things you wouldn't think merit a lawsuit. But should you sue? I don't see any negligence here, so a suit would just be a money grab, helping to contribute to why everything is so expensive these days.
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Old 12-24-2017, 08:15 AM   #19
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I would not sue for the combination of factors folks have noted: unclear cause and the emotional toll of actually prosecuting a suit that would likely go on for a long, long time.

That said, I would look into whether the store's insurance policy should afford compensation (admittedly to defer the threat of the suit).

Several years ago, my mother-in-law fell off a ladder on her own property and broke her back becoming a paraplegic.

I never would have guessed this would happen, but her home owners insurance paid out a lot of money to her as a result of the injury. Enough that they were actually able to do a large remodel on their home to make it able to capable of supporting someone in a wheelchair full time.

Clearly, she couldn't sue herself...so there must have been some underlying obligation within the insurance contract.

Perhaps the same things applies to the store insurance?
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Old 12-24-2017, 09:23 AM   #20
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I think it's too late now but i'm wondering if my Grandmother should have sued and what you would do. A little over 3 years ago my Grandmother tripped over the steel plate below the sliding door at the grocery store and broke her hip. I'm not sure there was any negligence on the stores part but she probably still could have sued. Should she have? About 8 months ago she went to the hospital for an unrelated leg injury. After getting treatment, she fell while walking out of the waiting room area and no staff offered to help her or see if she was ok. She just went home. The next day she couldn't get out of bed. She used her life alert and went to the hospital where they discovered she broke her back in three places. She says it could only have happened during her fall at the hospital. She decided not to pursue damages against the hospital. Should she have. What would you do? Is it too late to do anything about it now? She is partially paralyzed from the surgery to "fix" her broken back.
You might want to get her an assistant or accompany her to any future appointments.
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