Complex Personal Injury / Torts
When a loved one dies, you need to balance your pain and grief with the immediate task of making sure that their final wishes are granted and that their funeral arrangements are carried out in a way that honors the lives that they’ve led. It is your last opportunity to honor them and celebrate their life, so you pay great attention to the details and count on the funeral home and cemetery and their staffs to be your partners in this last act of respect.
Over the last several years, B&L has developed a niche in what has surprisingly become a burgeoning area of law. After representing a few clients, we learned that, despite conventional thinking, cemeteries, funeral homes and crematoriums are often not locally owned or non-profit based religious organizations. Instead, they are for profit enterprises often owned by large real estate trusts or publicly owned national — and even international — companies.
We also quickly learned that the government regulation and oversight of the industry was not what we would have thought. All of this has combined to create true horror stories that grieving loved ones have endured by funeral home and cemetery malpractice and sometimes fraud. B&L has taken the lead in this area of the law and currently we are prosecuting a large class action against one of the biggest companies that owns and operates cemeteries across the Country. We also handle individual cases involving various issues of funeral home and cemetery fraud and neglect, including:
- Placing more than one body in a burial plot or coffin
- Misplacing a body or interring it in the wrong plot
- Lost bodies that cannot be located after burial
- Selling body parts for medical purposes
- Mutilation, mishandling, or disfigurement of bodies
- Switching a body from an expensive coffin to an cheaper one before burial
- Mistaken cremation of a body
- Burial of a body that is meant to be cremated
If you have been a victim of negligence or abuse by a cemetery, funeral home, crematory or mortuary, we are ready to help you. We too are outraged by the disrespect shown to you and your loved one, and we are dedicated to helping you right this terrible wrong and get the justice that you deserve.
B&L has repeatedly distinguished itself in medical malpractice cases, having successfully represented many victims and families by obtaining multi-million dollar recoveries in cases involving surgical errors, emergency room mistakes, failure to diagnose cancer, Lyme’s disease, and failure to timely administer medicine to stroke victims, to name a few.
Consistent with our overall approach to things, B&L has also been at the forefront of medical malpractice law. We obtained one of the very first plaintiff verdicts in the Country for a negligently performed Lasik eye surgery. We established law concerning a pharmacy’s duty of care to warn patients of possible “dangerous drug-to-drug interactions” in Coffman v. CVS Caremark, Inc., Case Number 2:08-cv-03831. And we pursued an issue of first impression asserting a loss of consortium claim for same sex couples in Wolf v. Associates of Podiatric Medicine and Surgery.
A catastrophic injury is one that leaves its victim permanently disabled and that has a profound impact on the quality of their life. Handling these cases is a huge responsibility. Sometimes the cause is a car accident, an injury at a construction worksite, an injury that occurs due to negligent operation of machinery such as a forklift, or a slip and fall due to a defective condition on real estate. Most of these cases deal with a type of injury that will require daily assistance, supervision or round-the-clock care, and the victim is faced with immediate and ongoing medical expenses that are often overwhelming.
These cases require large commitments of time and resources to prove liability and the various types of recoverable damages: lost wages, reduction in earning capacity, past and future medical costs and life care expenses. It is critical for these cases that experts get engaged early in the process. The experts are across multiple disciplines – engineers, accident reconstructionists, human factor experts, economists, vocationalists, life care experts, and doctors. At times computer design and graphic experts are necessary to create videos recreating the accident.
In sum, these cases are extremely high stakes for both our clients and the firm. We take our responsibility to recover the fullest amount of damages available under the law for our clients very seriously.