$1,650,000 Awarded in Wrongful Death Fire

COURT AND COUNTY

Supreme Court, Kings County

AGE AND OCCUPATION OF PLAINTIFF

The plaintiff was a 71 year-old retired widow. The deceased was 73 year-old retiree at the time of his death

DESCRIPTION OF CASE

Block O'Toole & Murphy was retained to represent the plaintiff for her emotional injuries as well as the estate of the deceased after a large, deadly building fire. The plaintiff's claims were based on post traumatic death syndrome and emotional trauma as a result of the fire. The estate had a relatively minor monetary loss and was able to prove between 5 and 10 minutes of pain and suffering.

The fire started after a tenant fell asleep while smoking. The case largely depended on a hotly contested liability issue revolving around the open access to a pipe in the tenant's apartment where the fire started. Plaintiff argued that the pipe violated building code requirements and it fostered the spread of this deadly fire. The defendants claimed there was no violation and argued that the damages were minimal, alleging that the deceased died almost instantly.

INJURIES/DAMAGES

Wrongful Death/POst Traumatic Stress/Emotional Injuries

VERDICT/SETTLEMENT AMOUNT

$1,650,000. The case was settled at a mediation just before jury selection was scheduled to begin.

NOTE

This case was handled by Stephen J. Murphy