The family of a young boy who was injured when a tombstone fell on him in a graveyard has recently reached a settlement agreement with the religious organization that operated the cemetery. Patrick and Linda Frame visited a relative’s grave at St. Ann’s Cemetery in Freeland, Pennsylvania, during July of 2010. While in the cemetery, the couple’s six-year-old son touched a nearby tombstone. Instantly, the tombstone fell on the young boy, breaking his leg. As a result of the incident, the Frame family filed a personal injury lawsuit against the Diocese of Scranton.
In their lawsuit, the Frame family claimed that the Diocese of Scranton should be held accountable for their son’s injuries because it had failed to properly maintain the cemetery. Specifically, the family claimed that the Diocese has a duty to identify and repair any damaged or unstable tombstones. The Frame family also claimed that the Diocese’s negligent property maintenance in its failure to meet this duty directly led to their son’s injuries and that they are entitled to be compensated for damages related to the incident.
Although the Diocese may not completely agree with the Frame family’s legal arguments, it chose to avoid fighting against the Frames in court. As a result, the two parties have recently reached a settlement agreement. The agreement was presented to and approved by a local judge earlier this year. As part of the agreement, the Frame family will receive $225,000. This sum likely includes damages related to the medical expenses associated with the boy’s injuries as well as compensation for any pain and suffering or emotional distress he may have experienced.
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