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Former nursing assistant wins $3.9 million verdict against Williamsville nursing home
Buffalo News - 8/2/2022
Aug. 2—Jazmon Morrison, a certified nursing assistant, was with a patient at Williamsville Suburban Safire Nursing and Rehabilitation Center when she slipped on a wet floor, hitting the back of her head on the uncarpeted floor and losing consciousness. She suffered a traumatic brain injury and a bulging disc, ending her ability to work as a CNA at the age of 25.
Last week, six years after the accident, an Erie County Court jury awarded Morrison $3.9 million for her lawsuit against the nursing home.
With representation from Peter Kooshoian, Morrison made the case that her long-term injuries were the result of the facility's inability to alert people about the wet floor.
"She's happy with how the jury worked through it," Kooshoian said about his client.
The case is particularly unfortunate when considering Morrison's youth, Kooshoian said. She worked for most of her life and provided for her three children, but now, she is unable to work for the foreseeable future, he added.
Most of the money granted to Morrison, $2.5 million, covers her medical expenses over the next 30 years since she's still undergoing treatment for her injuries and using a cane to help her walk. Her money also includes $895,000 future loss of wages for the next 22 years, $177,000 for past missed wages and $400,000 for past and future pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life. Kooshoian will receive a third of the money.
Williamsville Suburban is in the process of filing a post-trial motion and an appeal, said its attorney, Caitlin Robin, who declined to make any other comment.
Kooshoian hopes Morrison's experience will cause places like nursing homes to act in a safer manner.
At Williamsville Suburban, it wasn't uncommon for the cleaning products used in a room to flow underneath the walls to the room next door. In Morrison's situation, the product used to strip a floor in the neighboring room seeped into the space she was in, Kooshoian said.
"They had previously complained about it and nothing was ever done," he added.
The resolution of Morrison's case was delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic and a heavy amount of investigation, Kooshoian said.
"There was a lot of investigation that went into it because some of the people that knew about the stripping of the floor no longer work there, so we had to find them and subpoena them in for testimony and that took a little while," he added.
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