Friday, May 26, 2023

Plaintiff Allowed to Proceed With Claims in Premises Liability Case That Decedent Passed Away From Exposure to Covid-19 Virus During Post-Accident Treatment

In the case of Corter v. Wal-Mart, No. CV-22-00100 (C.P. Lyc. Co. April 11, 2023 Linhardt, J.), the court sustained in part and denied in part various Preliminary Objections filed by Defendant Wal-Mart in a case involving allegations relative to a slip and fall matter that allegedly resulted in injuries that allegedly led to the Plaintiff’s death.

More specifically, the Plaintiff alleged that the decedent sustained multiple fractures during the course of his slip and fall injuries, as well as traumatic brain injuries, all of which required hospitalization. It was further alleged that the decedent was exposed to the COVID-19 virus during his hospitalization and in-patient treatment which allegedly caused and/or contributed to his death.

In one of its Preliminary Objections, Wal-Mart sought to strike, as scandalous and impertinent, allegations in the Complaint related to the Plaintiff’s alleged exposure to the COVID-19 virus during his post-incident treatment.

The court noted that the validity of these types of allegations turned on the issue of whether or not the Plaintiff had stated illegally cognizable claim of negligence against Wal-Mart. The court noted that, if the decedent’s death could not be attributed to Wal-Mart’s negligence as a matter of law, then the allegations that the decedent died, in part, due to exposure of the COVID-19 virus would be inappropriate and immaterial to the claims presented.

Judge Linhardt noted that, in this early stage of the litigation, the court could not conclude, as a matter of law, that Wal-Mart’s alleged negligence was not the legal cause of the decedent’s eventual death from COVID. As such, the court found that, at least at this stage of the litigation, allegations regarding the circumstances of the decedent’s death were neither scandalous nor impertinent.

Anyone wishing to review a copy of this decision may click this LINK.

I send thanks to Attorney Gary L. Weber, who is the Editor of the Lycoming Reporter and a member of the Williamsport, Pennsylvania law firm of Mitchell Gallagher, for bringing this case to my attention. 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.