$605,000 Verdict in Valparaiso -- Child Awarded for Facial Scarring When Landlord Failed to Cover Exposed Hot Water Pipe in Living Room

April 1995

(recreation photo)

In 1995, a 6 year-old child suffered burns to the right side of his face when he became wedged between the apartment wall and an exposed hot water pipe in the corner. The hot water pipe was located inside the apartment's walls and had no protective covering whatsoever, despite the landlord owning the property for a long period of time and his knowledge that small children were present in the leasehold.

The landlord's defense team argued the mother was being inattentive.  The incident occurred in Valparaiso, Indiana.

Attorney Jeff Shaw was able to locate the original lease between the parties which did not warn of the danger despite warranties of habitability.

The jury awarded $605,000 which was then put into a structured settlement that was designed to provide the child with over $2M on his 21st birthday.

At the time of the verdict, it was believed to set a state record for the largest verdict against a single landlord.

Until that record was smashed just 3 years later with a $1,750,000 verdict against a single landlord -- by Shaw Law Offices again who broke their own record.

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Practice area(s): Personal Injury


Jeff Shaw

Jeff Shaw has over 25+ years of experience trying personal injury lawsuits with over 100+ jury/bench trials. His reputation is one of fierceness in the court room mixed with good humor.

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