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Why This School Assault Case Would Never Survive in New York


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8/4/2010
Jonathan Cooper
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On August 2, it was reported that an Asian woman sued the Pennsylvania school district attended by her child to recover damages for the personal injuries she sustained when she was attacked by some African American students at the school. According to her attorney, the basis for her claim is that the the school district "fostered a culture where Asian Americans were subjected to repeated, systemic terrorization at the hands of other students."

Maybe the law is different in Pennsylvania, but in New York's courts, this case would have almost no chance of survival. And here's why:

As noted in "How to Prove Your School Negligence Case Under New York Law," New York's schools will not be held accountable for the injuries sustained by either a student or a third party (such as a parent) if the injuries were sustained as the direct result of a spontaneous, or unforeseeable act. Stated differently, unless the plaintiff can prove that the school either knew or should have known about an imminent danger on its premises - and during school hours - yet failed to act reasonably to prevent it from occurring, the plaintiff will lose.

I, for one, can't see how the plaintiff in this particular case would - or could - prove that.


Category: School Negligence / Personal Injury


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