A volunteer firefighter, Jared Lloyd, was killed at an assisted living community when a fire broke out. A wrongful death lawsuit was filed against the facility owners, former employees, city building inspectors, and two rabbis.
Sabrail Davenport, the mother of the deceased, is suing the owners of Evergreen Court Home for Adults, the Schonberger family, former Executive Director Denise Kerr, former employee Emmanual Lema, Spring Valley Building Department head Wayne Ballard, Chief Inspector Ray Canario, and Rabbis Nathaniel and Aaron Sommer.
The deadly fire killed Jared Lloyd, a volunteer firefighter at the time, along with a facility resident. The fire was tied to the Passover practice of torch-cleaning ovens. Kosher kitchens’ cleansing, removal, and burning of leavened food, known as chometz, is typical as Jews prepare for Passover. Propane torches are used to cleanse industrial ovens to remove products made of wheat, barley, rye, and oats.
The lawsuit, filed in the New York State Supreme Court (the lowest level court in New York), argues that the village, its inspectors, and the owners and employees of the assisted living community “created dangerous, defective, unsafe and hazardous conditions,” according to the lawsuit. Davenport seeks undisclosed financial compensation for emotional and psychological loss and punitive damages.
The Rabbis are accused of violating state fire safety regulations, including not having the permits to use high-power torches and taking the communities fire alarm system offline during the cleaning. The Schoenbergers have not been charged criminally. At the same time, criminal charges are pending against Ballard and Canario of the building department for filing false reports on fire inspections. Misdemeanor charges of falsifying business records were dismissed. Both have pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Wrongful Death Lawsuits
In the above case, it may not be evident that there was any negligence on behalf of the facility, owners, or workers because fires are often accidentally started.
Wrongful death lawsuits can include but are not limited to, the following incidents:
- Drunk driving, aggressive driving, or distracted driving that results in death;
- Malpractice of medical professionals, including in Ohio nursing home abuse cases;
- Manufacturing defective or dangerous products;
- Having hazardous conditions on a property.
When someone you love has died, it is important to assess the circumstances to ensure that liability is present. Having an experienced attorney review your case is vital because, although the circumstances of the death may seem self-evident, there may have been negligent actions that caused the death of your loved one.
Potential Wrongful Death Settlements and Damages
The damages available in a wrongful death case are used to replace the financial loss and suffering resulting from the death of your loved one. These damages can include economic losses resulting from the death of the family member and include expenses such as medical, funeral, and burial costs. However, Ohio law also allows you to seek damages for additional losses, including the following:
- The estimated income and financial support the deceased would have provided if they had lived;
- The estimated value of the household and childcare services the deceased would have contributed to the family;
- The amount by which inheritance was reduced because of an untimely death;
- Loss of companionship, care, guidance, assistance, protection, attention, instruction, counsel, consortium, advice, education, and training incurred by the surviving family members;
- Mental anguish of the surviving family members caused by the death.
Losing a loved one is a stressful, emotional, and confusing time. At Charles Boyk Law Offices, we work to bring the families who lost their loved ones some closure by holding those accountable and responsible for their loved one’s wrongful death.
Contact an Attorney if You Lost a Loved One Due to Negligence
The Ohio wrongful death attorneys at Charles Boyk Law Offices will review your case in a free consultation and discuss all your legal options. Contact us today if you feel your family member’s death was the result of a negligent action by another.