Child’s fall from second floor in hotel results in $10.9 million settlement

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by Michael Heygood

Elijah M. Clayton was two-years old when he stayed with his family at the Ramada Norfolk Airport hotel in Virginia in September 2011. He was on a second floor, open-sided walkway at or near the entrance to room 253, where, unbeknownst to him or his companions, the railing was missing a spindle. According to a lawsuit filed against the hotel, Elijah went through the opening in the railing where the vertical bar was missing and fell from the second floor to the pavement below, sustaining serious injuries, including permanent brain injuries.

His parents filed a lawsuit alleging that the owner/operator of the hotel negligently failed to properly maintain the premises, including the open-sided walkways, open-sided walking surfaces and balconies. They asserted that the hotel owner negligently allowed an outside guard (a missing baluster, or “vertical bar”) to remain unrepaired and unsecured and failed to block the opening in the second floor railing caused by the missing vertical bar.

According to a settlement announced this month, the owner of the hotel will pay a total of $10.9 million to resolve the lawsuit. About $203,000 will go towards Elijah’s medical bills. Most of the settlement is to be put into a trust for Elijah when he gets older.

HO&P Fighting for Children and Families

To successfully bring a personal injury or wrongful death claim on behalf of a child, clients need an experienced, educated attorney on their side. They also need an attorney with the financial resources to take the case to trial. At Heygood, Orr & Pearson, we are proud of the work we have done on behalf children who have been unfortunately injured as a result of the negligence of others., including:

  • $36 million jury verdict for a child who suffered brain damage and other serious injuries in a bus crash on the way to church camp.
  • $6.7 million verdict in a personal injury lawsuit against the United States for medical errors at a VA hospital, which caused permanent brain damage to an 8-year-old child
  • $2.2 million jury verdict in a personal injury lawsuit involving improper discharge of a newborn from the hospital with low glucose levels, resulting in moderate brain damage

If your child has suffered a serious personal injury or death, contact Heygood, Orr & Pearson for your free case evaluation and to learn more about your legal right to compensation. You can reach us by calling toll-free at 1-877-446-9001, or by filling out the free contact form located on this page.