Legal Question in Personal Injury in Virginia

My brother works as a pharmacy tech in a hospital. On Sept. 2,2014 he had a massive stroke while at work and lay on the ground for 40 minutes before he was found and then ushered to the emergency room. He was given TPA, which did not work, so he was then sent by ambulance to another hospital for surgery to clear his carotid artery. When the surgery was done they discovered he had bleeding in his brain and then sent him again to yet another hospital. He spent 3 weeks in ICU and then 2 weeks in a step down unit. He is paralyzed on his entire right side, he also has a trach and a feeding tube. He's been in an acute rehab for two weeks with slow progress and a setback with the onset of seizures this week. Obviously, time is extremely important at the onset of a stroke. Do we have any legal grounds to sue the hospital for one of their employees laying on the ground for 40 minutes before he was ever found?! He could of gotten quicker help if he'd of had a stroke out on the sidewalk!

Asked on 10/17/14, 9:05 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

Stephen B. Pershing Stephen B. Pershing, Esq.

Hello there--yes, from your description it sounds like he's got a serious, viable claim. Bravo on your precise and careful summary. These facts strike me as quite egregious, and the medical effects he's suffering are ghastly and potentially long-term.

We'll want to know all we can about where he collapsed and why he wasn't found. We'll also want to know the medical facts surrounding his various treatments and transfers from one hospital to another. There's a lot to look into here, and it's not something your brother and his family should try by yourselves.

It's funny how many ways there are for folks to come across a lawyer who can help them. I'm someone I hope you'll be glad you found: a plaintiff's lawyer of 25 years' experience, a former Justice Dept. civil rights litigator, now in sole practice here in Washington, licensed to practice in D.C. and Virginia.

For Va. personal injury and medical malpractice cases I partner with a couple of Va. law firms I greatly respect, who specialize in these cases. We work together from start to finish, develop the facts, write the pleadings and briefs, hire medical experts as we need them, and take the case to trial and even appeal if we have to. I'd be happy to talk with your brother without charge and arrange a joint consult, see if we can take the case on a contingent fee (meaning no lawyer's fee unless we win).

We ought to act quickly, so please feel free to get this word to him. I'll make the time to speak with him or come meet him, even in the evening or on the weekend. We'll look at the facts, consider how to present them in the most persuasive way possible, and talk over the options together, both settlement and litigation.

Definitely encourage your brother to pursue this. Let me help any way I can. I'm so glad you wrote--I hope he is too! Remember he's the client, he's in the driver's seat. Best regards. --Steve Pershing, e-mail sbpershing at

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Answered on 10/17/14, 9:43 am

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