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Articles Posted in Indiana Court of Appeals Decisions

In a recent decision, the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed a ruling from the Marion Circuit Court, holding that an Indiana father who watched his son die after he was prematurely sent home from the hospital without his injuries being properly treated could recover damages for negligent infliction of emotional distress independently from damages awarded under the Adult Wrongful Death Statute. Indiana Patient’s Compensation Fund vs. Gary Patrick, Individually and as Personal Representative of the Estate of Christopher Patrick, Deceased, No. 49A02-0807-CV-614 (Ind. Ct. App. 2009).

A tragic set of circumstances surrounds this case. Back in 2002, a thirty-one year old man was involved in a motor vehicle accident and was transported to St. Mary’s Medical Center in Evansville, Indiana, where he was treated for a broken wrist, broken nose, and abdominal trauma. He was discharged the following day after the accident.

At the time the man lived with his father. The evening of the day the son was released from the hospital, he began vomiting blood. His father called 911, but by the time EMTs arrived, the son had died from an untreated ruptured colon caused by seatbelt trauma during the accident.
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Indiana Supreme Court has granted transfer of a case involving Indiana’s workers’ compensation statute and a farmer’s insurance policy which aimed at excluding the farmer’s liability coverage. Everett Cash Mutual Insurance Company vs. Rick Taylor and Katrina Taylor, No. 02A03-0808-CV-386 (Ind. Ct. App. 2009), transfer granted (September 3, 2009).

In Everett, a farmer employed an independent contractor business to paint his house, grain bin, and barn. The farmer did not check to see if the business carried workers’ compensation insurance for its employees and in fact they did not. One of the business’ employees came into contact with an electrical wire while painting and was injured.

The employee initially filed a workers’ compensation claim against the independent contractor business, but he discovered the business had no such insurance. He then amended his complaint to name the farmer, alleging the farmer failed to verify whether the independent contractor business had workers’ compensation insurance pursuant to Indiana Code 22-3-2-14(b). At no time did the employee file any tort-related claims against the farmer.
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