Verdict Against Home Care Company

DeMartini v. Helvetia Home Services Inc. dba Visiting Angels Living Assistance Service – Westside, Multnomah County Case No. 16CV20182

Plaintiff DeMartini is the court-appointed Personal Representative of the Estate of Scott Walker.  She brought this action on behalf of the estate seeking damages for injuries that Mr. Walker suffered when he fell at his home.  She claimed that Defendant Visiting Angels was hired to provide 24-hour monitoring of Mr. Walker who was 94 years old and suffered from a variety of illnesses. His illnesses caused him to be a fall risk and to suffer from frequent, urgent urination.  The care plan required a caregiver to provide close supervision at night if Mr. Walker attempted to go to the bathroom alone. During the care period, the assigned Visiting Angels employee fell asleep in an area of the house distant from Mr. Walker’s room.  Mr. Walker attempted to go the bathroom unassisted and fell, striking his head. The estate claimed that Mr. Walker suffered thoracic compression fractures and connective tissue injuries which required him to undergo balloon kyphoplasty surgery. The estate alleged that Mr. Walker was never able to return home after the surgery and was required to live in a residential facility until his death.  The estate sought $54,611.69 in medical expenses and $1,250,000 for non-economic damages.

Defendant Visiting Angels denied liability.  They claimed that Mr. Walker’s injuries were the result of his own negligence in failing to ask for help, ambulating without assistance and having care providers in another room when he was sleeping. They further alleged that his daughter, Plaintiff DeMartini, was negligent in not installing a bed alarm.

Plaintiff’s Counsel – Kristen McCall

Defense Counsel – Scott Schauermann

Verdict – $149,611.69

Date –July 28, 2017

August 1, 2017

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