Monday, September 9, 2013

A recent case that illustrates liability for further injuries that occur after an initial injury

Nebraskan's lawsuit alleges Wal-Mart's plastic bag broke, leading to fatal injury to his wife

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — An eastern Nebraska man has sued Wal-Mart, saying the failure of an overfilled
plastic shopping bag led to the death of his wife.

The Lincoln Journal Star reports ( that the Sarpy County lawsuit filed by William Freis, of Plattsmouth, has been moved to U.S. District Court in Omaha.

The lawsuit says the bag failed on April 16, 2010, outside a Wal-Mart store in Bellevue. A can inside fell onto the right big toe of Freis' wife, Lynette, breaking and cutting it. The lawsuit says the injuries led to an infection that spread through her body "and ultimately resulted in her death on March 12, 2011."

The lawsuit seeks more than $656,000.

A Wal-Mart spokesman declined to directly comment on the lawsuit's allegations.


Information from: Lincoln Journal Star, 
This article above, which was reported in KSPR abc 33 News gives a good example of a lawsuit where one injury occurs, which then leads to another injury that is possibly more serious. In this case the woman suffered a severe infection from a cut, which is rare, and not usually expected. However, it is generally the case that the person or entity whose negligence caused the harm to the person will be liable for all the injuries they suffered as a result of that harm even if the later injuries suffered after the initial injury occurred seem unlikely or are hard to predict. Basically the reason for this is that it is a good policy to hold the person or entity responsible for all injuries suffered from their negligence because otherwise the burden of paying for treatment of the injury and other aspects of the injury will fall on the injured person or society at large. Therefore, it is just fair that the person who caused the harm should pay. This policy makes sense even though it may seem a little hard to see how some harm that comes to a person after the initial injury will be part of the injured person's original case.

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