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Federal judge allows Bethlehem Area School District wrongful death lawsuit

Liberty High School in Bethlehem Express-Times File Photo
A federal judge is allowing a wrongful death lawsuit filed against the Bethlehem Area School District to move forward.

The mother of a 16-year-old Liberty High School student, who collapsed in class in 2010 and died shortly after at the hospital, sued in December claiming if school district officials had acted faster her son would be alive.

The Lehigh County Coroner’s Office determined Juanya Spady, 16, of the 200 block of West Lehigh Street in Bethlehem, died of natural causes from a seizure disorder but attorneys representing his mother, Mica D. Spady, disagree.

Today in federal court in Philadelphia, Judge Joel H. Slomsky denied the district’s motion to dismiss the suit. Slomsky said it’s rare for him to throw out a claim for damages this early without knowing any facts beyond what’s alleged in the plaintiff’s complaint.

Spady seeks a jury trial and at least $ 150,000 in damages for the loss of her son and her mental anguish. The suit asks for a court order to stop unlawful district practices that violated the boy’s civil rights.

The school district’s attorney, Paul G. Lees, declined to comment following the hearing, saying he never speaks about pending litigation.

Spady’s attorney, Joe Welsh, said he was pleased nothing in his case was thrown out.

“Hopefully, it brings Ms. Spady one step closer to closure,” Welsh said.

At this stage of the case, all well-pleaded facts in the complaint are taken as true, he said. He expects as the case progresses he’ll be able to prove the facts in his complaint and new facts will emerge that allow the suit to go before a jury.

The lawsuit says that although Juanya said he wasn’t up to it, [...]

By |March 17th, 2013|News|Comments Off on Federal judge allows Bethlehem Area School District wrongful death lawsuit|

New Bill Allows Parents to Sue for Wrongful Death of Fetus – U.S. Politics Today

A new law creates a cause of action for wrongful death of a fetus. Parents may now bring suit for medical malpractice, abuse, or negligence that result in their child’s death.
October 16, 2012 /24-7PressRelease/ — Virginia parents who have lost a child know it is a devastating experience. The pain often lasts a lifetime.
The Virginia Senate recently approved a bill that allows parents to sue for the wrongful death of a fetus. The bill is part of several bills related to abortion rights that were also introduced during the current legislative session.
The bill creates a cause of action for death of a fetus caused by a wrongful act or neglect. It creates the greatest expansion of a cause of action for wrongful death in Virginia since it was first recognized in 1871.
Many other jurisdictions have passed similar bills. A majority of states require a fetus to be viable in order to bring a wrongful death suit. Virginia is part of a minority of jurisdictions that allow a suit to be brought for both a viable and nonviable fetus. It is important to note that the bill does not provide a right to sue for lawful abortions performed in Virginia.
The suit can only be brought by the natural mother. An administrator of her estate, a guardian or a personal representative may sue if the natural mother is not available due to death or disability. However, no suit can be brought against the natural mother of a fetus.
Previously, expectant mothers could obtain emotional distress damages for loss of a fetus, but no wrongful death cause of action was available. The new bill provides compensation to family members when a fetus [...]

By |October 17th, 2012|News|Comments Off on New Bill Allows Parents to Sue for Wrongful Death of Fetus – U.S. Politics Today|