my brother was murdered at a healthcare facility by another patient around 6 months ago. The nursing staff discovered my brother on his bed. The killer was arrested, and is in process of going through trial. Would the hospital be liable for medical malpractice or wrongful death. I do not want to offer to much information, but just enough to get feedback. Would this be a medical malpractice or wrongful case.
This would be an inadequate/negligent security claim against the facility, and likely a good case. What facility?
Not malpractice but it is a complicated wrongful death claim saying there was a lack of security in protecting the patients.
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There is much more information needed to be given. I know you do not want to do that on this forum. It would be best to consult with a personal injury lawyer in Philadelphia for a free consultation.
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I am very sorry to hear about your brother. You most definitely should speak with an attorney in the Philadelphia area about what happened. You are right to keep the facts off line. The case would not be medical malpractice, but rather a wrongful death claim due to the lack of proper security.
Again, I am sorry for your loss.
I am licensed in Pennsylvania. Members of my firm are licensed in various states, including Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York. We handle cases involving personal injury (car accidents slip and falls, etc.,) medical malpractice, nursing home abuse, workers' compensation, social security disability and legal malpractice. Nothing I write on Avvo is legal advice, but instead contains general educational information. Please do not act or refrain from acting based upon what you read in anything I write on Avvo without retaining your own lawyer in your state. Also please remember that this post does not form an attorney/client relationship between you and me. If you have specific legal questions, you should contact an attorney in your state for assistance.
There are many creative lawyers in Philadelphia --Tom Kline, Mark Le Winter, Robert Mongeluzzi, Jim Ronca all come to mind and many, many others. Be aware that your family/the estate may be able to get any related funeral expenses, bills covered by the Crime Victims Compensation Act. The DA's victim assistance coordinator has the forms or you can call our office for a brochure or go online. If your brother was a member of any fraternal organization may have had life insurance through that as well as any he had on his own.
All the best to you and the family during this very difficult time.
First, I'm sorry for the loss of your brother. Wrongful death claims can be related to instances of medical malpractice, but in this case, it doesn't sound like a medical professional failed to provide an acceptable standard of medical care. However, it could be the case that the facility neglected to provide adequate security, which contributed your brother's death. To determine if this is the situation, a lawyer would need more details about the event. You're right not to post too much information online on a public forum like this. My suggestion would be to contact an attorney for a free consultation where you can go over all of the details of the situation privately, and go from there. You can use the Find a Lawyer tool here on Avvo to locate a lawyer with a good reputation who practices in Philadelphia. If possible, visit the law firm's website and look through the attorney's case results or settlements and verdicts to find out if the lawyer you're considering has experience handling inadequate security or assault claims. Best of luck!
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When someone dies as a result of someone's negligence two potential claims can be brought--one under Pennsylvania's wrongful death statute and or the survival statute. The death can be caused by medical malpractice/negligence or some other form of negligence, e.g. auto negligence, slip and fall, etc. Wrongful death is simply the claim certainly family members can bring who have suffered a loss as a result of death--a wife or children, etc. The Survival Action belongs to the estate of the deceased and seeks recovery for the loss the decedent could have brought had he lived, e.g. pain and suffering, etc. What you described could be the basis of a medical negligence case; the facility had an obligation to provide proper security to ensure your brother's safety--there may be a standard of care violation. Certainly, a premises/security claim can be explored--which is basically the same--the facility had an obligation to protect your brother from harm.
Now if your brother had a wife and/or children only they have a right to pursue a claim.
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Under the limited facts that you have provided, the potential claims sound more in premises liability and/or inadequate security and negligent supervision. If the incident took place in the commonwealth of Pennsylvania, there are new joint and several liability laws that could affect whether recovery from the Hospital at the time of trial will be possible. This is a bit complicated and the analysis requires lawyer consultation. In order to prove an inadequate security case, like any premises liability case, one would have to prove 1.) actual notice (that the hospital had notice that the tortious/criminal act was about to occur And/or 2.) constructive notice (that there were prior similar intentional/criminal activity in hospital previously so that the act against your family member was reasonably foreseeable-thus, placing hospital on notice that such an act could have occurred. This will require discovery and proofs aren't always easy in such cases but worth seeking lawyer consultation. Please keep in mind that negligence cases such as this have a two year statute of limitations in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. There may also be additional notice requirements. Hence, it is imperative that you seek thE advices of an attorney immediately. I am sorry for what happened and wish you the best in the future.
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