Attorney Laura Brown recently helped the family of a DUI victim recover $16.7 million from a negligent Southlake nursing home company for allowing one of its nurses to drive home while intoxicated. According to authorities, the 43-year-old nurse’s blood-alcohol content was 0.40 when she caused the fatal car accident; an individual is considered intoxicated with a BAC level of .08 in the state of Texas.
The crash killed the 37-year-old driver of the other vehicle and injured his wife and their two children, ages 7 and 10 at the time of the crash.
The victim’s family filed a wrongful death lawsuit against both the intoxicated driver and the nurse’s employer, the Hamilton Healthcare Center. Not only did the nursing home, owned by Senior Living Properties, allow the nurse to drive while drunk, it failed to take necessary steps to prevent her from causing harm to others.
The jury determined that the nursing home company was 65 percent at fault for the fatal accident for not firing the nurse previously when she showed up to work intoxicated on several different occasions and for sending her home drunk on the day of the wreck. Under company policy, if an employee is suspected of being under the influence of alcohol or drugs, she must be tested and fired if intoxicated. The company failed to test or fire the nurse at any point.
Laura Brown, lead attorney for the victim’s family, said, “It would have been a very simple thing to prevent this employee from driving. Instead, Senior Living Properties … chose to disregard its policies and its basic obligations to protect the public because they didn’t pay their nurse aides well, they were understaffed and they wanted to have this employee return to work another day.”
The nurse, who was determined to be 35 percent at fault for the crash, was also charged with intoxication manslaughter and intoxication assault, resulting in a prison sentence of 28 years.
The Board Certified personal injury trial lawyers at Williams & Brown LLP are dedicated to protecting those who have been harmed through no fault of their own. If you have been injured or lost a loved one due to another’s reckless actions, our legal team will work diligently to hold the negligent party accountable.