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Gonzalez v NYHA - grandchildren did not qualify for these...

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CASE: Gonzalez v. New York Housing Authority 572 N.E.2d 598 (N.Y. 1991) P198 torts Facts a. Plaintiff/Gonzalez/two grown grandchildren Defendant/NY HA b. Grandmother of plaintiffs was found in her apt tied up and gagged. She died of asphyxia by gagging. She was an active part of the plaintiff’s lives. c. (1) C/A: wrongful death (2) relief requested: (3) defenses raised: plaintiff did not suffer pecuniary injuries. Procedural History: a. Lower court’s ruling(s): for the plaintiff b. Damages awarded: $1,250,000 for wrongful death and $1,000,000 for conscious pain and suffering c. Appellant: NYHA Issues: a. substantive issue (i) Whether the damages they have shown fall within the statutory confines of “pecuniary injuries? Whether the decedent was due damages for pain and suffering? (ii) defendant claims that the relationship between the decedent and her
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Unformatted text preview: grandchildren did not qualify for these damages. b. procedural issue: damages awarded Disposition (judgment): Affirmed. Holding: The court held that there was sufficient circumstantial evidence to support the conclusion that decedent was conscious when most of the injuries were inflicted and, therefore, the award for pain and suffering was proper. Rule of Law or Legal Principle Applied: New York’s wrongful death statute allows recovery to “pecuniary injuries.” Loss of support, voluntary assistance and possible inheritance may be recovered as well/ Reasoning: Grandmother cooked for plaintiffs every other night, provided shelter during marital crisis, and provided support and counseling to plaintiffs on dealing with their mentally ill mother. Concurring/Dissenting Opinions: Additional Comments/Personal Impressions:...
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