Hadley DeRuyver. 9 months, was with her two brothers and their nanny at the Omni La Costa Resort &Spa. A waiter placed a coffee pot, that was full of hot coffee, at the edge of the table that was within the reach of the infant.

When the nine-month-old reached for the coffee pot, the hot coffee spilled onto her causing her to suffer first-, second-, and third-degree burns. The 9-month-old underwent multiple surgeries, including skin grafts, and will require additional procedures as she grows.

Now 3, DeRuyver now has permanent scarring. Her medical expenses totaled nearly $441,000. DeRuyver’s siblings suffered emotional distress from witnessing the incident.

DeRuyver and her siblings, through their guardian, sued Omni La Costa Resort, alleging its waiter negligently placed the coffee pot within the infants reach. The suit also alleged that the defendant should have used non-spill coffee pots and that the coffee was unreasonably hot.

The jury awarded $6.5 million. The award includes $879,000 for emotional distress.

“We were disappointed that the Omni failed to accept responsibility for its employee’s clear negligence and instead turned on its own customers,” stated lead trial attorney John Gomez. “We hope that today’s verdict causes Omni to take the safety of its guests much more seriously.”

Omni defended the claim by blaming the baby’s parents and nanny for failing to supervise and protect the child.

Jones Brown Law

At the law offices of Jones Brown, we pride ourselves on principles of honesty, hard work, fair dealing and compassion in our representation. Our goal is to let clients focus on healing while we take care of the legal process of recovering from your accident. Our attorneys and staff are committed to adhering to a strict code of professional ethics. We dedicate ourselves to our clients’ best interests and making the legal process as painless and simple as possible for the injured and their family.

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