My son has 1st degree burn on his head. Should I consider suing? 24 Answers as of February 07, 2013

We were at a waffle house sitting close to coffee pot (about 1 to 2 feet away). My 6-month old son was asleep in car seat on counter with his dad sitting in front of him. I had stepped outside. The server was mad/upset, slammed the pot on the top back burner, and walked away. It kept going landed on tray of cups, the coffee splashed up in air and all over my son and husband. Could I get pain and suffering for my husband and my emotional distress?

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Adler Law Group, LLC
Adler Law Group, LLC | Lawrence Adler
Your son and husband have apparently a very good claim against the restaurant for their injuries.
Answer Applies to: Connecticut
Replied: 2/7/2013
David F. Stoddard
David F. Stoddard | David F. Stoddard
Yes, but the amount you could seek depends on the severity of the burn and whether there is permanent damage. first degree is severe, but I don't know if it is the size of a penny, or covers a large portion of his head. You should consult an attorney for advice as to whether the injury is severe enough to justify a lawsuit.
Answer Applies to: South Carolina
Replied: 1/31/2013
Kram & Wooster, P.S. | Richard H. Wooster
Sounds like she was negligent, you have a claim. You can get emotional distress damages, but unless you needed counseling the jury won't give you much on your claims.
Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 1/31/2013
The Ticktin Law Group
The Ticktin Law Group | Peter Ticktin
In the scenario you described, you may have a valid cause of action against Waffle House and the waitress for negligence. This could be done by alleging the waitress performed her negligent action during the course and scope of her employment; as such, the employer may be held liable for the actions of the waitress. The waitress can be found negligent as she is the person who performed the acts that were the proximate cause of your son's injury. You may be able to add a cause of action for negligent infliction of emotional distress on you and your husband's behalf, but your husband cannot claim pain and suffering as he was not injured in the factual scenario you provided. There are other factors an attorney will have to consider, such as defenses the Waffle House may raise. You should consider consulting an attorney so that you may obtain a more informed and full evaluation of your possible case.
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 1/31/2013
Law Office of Edmund P. Allen Jr. | Edmund P. Allen Jr.
You should talk to a lawyer about this. You are a "business invitee" to the waffle house, and they owe you a duty of care to keep you out of harms way. If there are burns, with documented medical proof, then the restaurant has some civil exposure here.
Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 1/30/2013
    Bulman Law Associates PLLC Injury Law Firm
    Bulman Law Associates PLLC Injury Law Firm | Thomas Bulman
    Not enough damage to sue. Could have happened cases don't go to court.
    Answer Applies to: Montana
    Replied: 1/30/2013
    Frank Law Group, P.C.
    Frank Law Group, P.C. | Brett E. Rosenthal
    You have the ability to file 3 claims; one for your son for his physical injuries, your husband for his physical injuries and emotional distress for witnessing injuries to his son; and thirdly you have a negligent infliction of emotional distress for having witnessed the incident where your son suffered the burns. Would imagine that the business probably willingly provided insurance information and would imagine it would settle with a single letter.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/30/2013
    Durham Jones & Pinegar | Erven Nelson
    Yes, but you will need to prove your damages. The way to do that is through medical records, primarily. Have our son and husband visit doctors to substantiate the injuries and follow their treatment instructions. If you want damages for emotional distress, you will need to see your doctor about that.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 1/30/2013
    Law Office of J. Michael Gatien
    Law Office of J. Michael Gatien | J. Michael Gatien
    You have viable claims. A Lawsuit may not be necessary provided that professional case and evidence presentation is made to the restaurant's insurance company.
    Answer Applies to: Ohio
    Replied: 1/30/2013
    Peters Law, PLLC
    Peters Law, PLLC | Mark T. Peters, Sr.
    Without permanent injuries or even long lasting injuries, it probably is not worth the trouble.
    Answer Applies to: Idaho
    Replied: 1/30/2013
    James E. Hasser, Jr. P.C.
    James E. Hasser, Jr. P.C. | Jim Hasser
    Yes, you may want to consider suing. There may be a slight complication in that the child was on the counter and not on the floor, as I believe is recommended by the car seat manufacturers. The reason I bring it up is that Alabama is a contributory negligence State which means that you can't recover if you were even 1% at fault. Waffle House lawyers may throw that up at you, but it's a red herring, as we say in the business, as far as your baby is concerned. Your baby can't be negligent and still may have a claim against Waffle House. Your husband and you would only have a claim for repayment of medical bills. I would talk to a lawyer familiar with Alabama accident law.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 1/30/2013
    Ewusiak & Roberts, P.A.
    Ewusiak & Roberts, P.A. | Christopher J. Roberts
    From what you've described, you have a case to recover damages for your son and your husband if he was also burned. You would be entitled to recover damages for expenses you incurred.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 1/30/2013
    Timiney Law Firm
    Timiney Law Firm | Leigh Anne Timiney
    I am sorry to hear about this accident with your son and I hope he is recovering well. You would likely be able to pursue an injury claim against the waffle house for your son's burn. With an injury claim, you would be entitled to compensation for your son's medical care and any lost wages you may have suffered in caring for his injuries related to this. Your son is also entitled to pain and suffering as part of an injury claim. You and your husband are not entitled to a pain and suffering award. I would strongly suggest you consult with a personal injury attorney. He or she will be able to hear all of the facts of your case and help you make a fully informed decision with regard to what your legal options may be. Keep in mind, the waffle house is not on your side in this matter. Their goal is to find a way to pay you as little as possible for your sons's injury. Insurance companies tend to take advantage of unrepresented individuals.
    Answer Applies to: Arizona
    Replied: 1/30/2013
    Law Office of Christian Menard
    Law Office of Christian Menard | Christian Menard
    Your baby has a case. The hot coffee burned him as a result of the negligence of the employee. As to emotional distress damages for either you or your husband, in the absence of sustaining physical injury, to recover those damages, or otherwise having a case, you need to have seen, or otherwise directly perceived, the injury to your son. Such a situation falls under the principle of bystander injury.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/30/2013
    Andrew T. Velonis, P.C.
    Andrew T. Velonis, P.C. | Andrew Velonis
    You should definitely report this if you have not already. Sit down and talk with the manager. In his office would be best. Explain your dismay. Tell him you don't want to have to go to a lawyer but you will if he makes it neccesary for you to do so. I'd say you should get about six full-course meals out of this.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 1/30/2013
    Paul Whitfield and Associates P.A.
    Paul Whitfield and Associates P.A. | Paul L. Whitfield
    You have a nickel and dime case. You are entitled to something (the baby) but it would not be worth filing a lawsuit. You will get nothing for pain and suffering or emotional distress.
    Answer Applies to: North Carolina
    Replied: 1/30/2013
    Curry, Roby & Mulvey Co., LLC
    Curry, Roby & Mulvey Co., LLC | Bruce A. Curry
    Yes, although your damages certainly seem to be limited, absent medical bills or scarring.
    Answer Applies to: Ohio
    Replied: 1/30/2013
    Koning & Jilek, P.C.
    Koning & Jilek, P.C. | Jonathan Neal Jilek
    Your baby may have a claim.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 1/30/2013
    Paul A. Lauto, PLLC
    Paul A. Lauto, PLLC | Paul A. Lauto
    Although I would need all the details to determine the viability of your claim, I believe it is certainly worth your considering bringing a claim on behalf of your son. One main factor in evaluating the case, will be the full extent of the injury, treatment required and whether or not there will be any residual scarring.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 1/30/2013
    Logan Quirk
    Logan Quirk | Logan Quirk
    You should immediately contact a personal injury attorney.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/30/2013
    Ferguson & Ferguson
    Ferguson & Ferguson | Randy W. Ferguson
    Yes. Do incident report.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 1/30/2013
    Kelaher Law Offices, P.A.
    Kelaher Law Offices, P.A. | James P Kelaher
    Before you file a lawsuit, why don't you contact the waffle house and get their insurance information and discuss it with the adjuster. If either your son or husband incurred any medical expenses, I would think you would want to make a claim.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 1/30/2013
    Dwyer, Black & Lyle, LLP
    Dwyer, Black & Lyle, LLP | Kevin Habberfield
    Yes. Go see an attorney. Just because that person was upset doesn't mean your son has to suffer for it.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 1/30/2013
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