If my daughter fell from her bunk bed in her college dorm because there were no bed rails, should the university be liable for not supplying them?

She suffered a broken nose, a bruised thigh and a concussion. This was new dormitory and was just finished the week before moving into them. The university has been accommodating to most of the needs associated with this.

Asked on September 17, 2015 under Personal Injury, Oklahoma

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

The university is liable for negligence for not supplying the bed rails.
Prior to filing a lawsuit for negligence against the university, it may be possible to settle the case with the university's insurance carrier.
When your daughter completes her medical treatment and is released by the doctor or is declared by the doctor to be permanent and stationary, which means having reached a point in her medical treatment where no further improvement is anticipated, obtain her medical bills and medical reports.  Her personal injury claim filed with the university's insurance carrier should include those items.  I assume there isn't any wage loss because she is a student however, if there is a wage loss claim, documentation of wage loss should also be included in the personal injury claim.
Compensation for  the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  The medical reports will document the nature and extent of the injuries and will be used to determine compensation for pain and suffering which is an amount in addition to the medical bills.  Compensation for wage loss is straight reimbursement.
If the case is settled with the university's insurance carrier, NO lawsuit is filed.
If your daughter is dissatisfied with settlement offers from the university's insurance carrier, she should reject the settlement offers and file a lawsuit for negligence against the university.
If the case is NOT settled with the university's insurance carrier, your daughter's lawsuit for negligence against the university must be filed prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or she will lose her rights forever in the matter.


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