The state of Indiana has offered a settlement of $300,000 to families of each of the 7 people who were killed during a stage collapse at the Indiana State Fair in August. This amount is substantially below the settlement value of these types of wrongful death claims. The rest of the $5 million compensation fund will be paid out to people who suffered a personal injury during the stage collapse. As personal injury attorneys are well aware, when a government entity is involved, victims are seldom fully compensated for their injuries or the death of their loved ones.
The stage collapse accident occurred at the Indiana State Fair in Indianapolis on August 13.Rigging on the stage collapsed in the late hours of the evening, killing 4 people immediately.One other person died the morning after the accident, and 2 other persons died in the days after the collapse.More than 40 persons were injured in the collapse.Just before the collapse, fair organizers and security officials had noticed strong winds measuring 77 mph, and had even been considering postponing the concert by Sugar Land that was due to take place.However, those plans to postpone the concert never materialized.
Under Indiana’s liability laws, the state’s liability in an accident like this is restricted to $5 million.Now, the state has proposed its plans to divide the $5 million.The state is offering a settlement of $300,000 to the families of each person killed in the collapse.Families of victims, who had been hospitalized before their deaths, are likely to receive additional compensation.More than 60 other persons were injured in the collapse, and they will be compensated from the remainder of the $5 million fund.The compensation for those were injured in the accident, is likely to depend on the severity of the injuries.Some of the injured are being offered settlements that amount to just about 60% of their total documented medical expenses.One of the injured, who was left paralyzed, has been offered compensation of $500,000.
According to the Indiana Atty. Gen., its office found it a challenge to decide on the amount of compensation to each of the victims.The Atty. Gen.’s Office has had some assistance in designing the compensation plan from Kenneth Feinberg, who helped design the compensation plans after the 9/11 terrorist attacks and the Virginia Tech Shootings.
Families of the victims who were killed and the people who were injured have not decided whether to accept the settlement.A decision on that is expected soon.However, if the settlement is accepted, then these victims will not be able to file any personal injury lawsuit or wrongful death lawsuit against the state in the future.However, some of the injured have already filed lawsuits against the state, challenging the liability cap, which restricts the amount of money that can be paid out to injured victims.Victims who have been injured and families of those killed in the Indiana State Fair stage collapse have also filed lawsuits against other entities that they claim were responsible for the accident.
The Atlanta personal injury lawyers at the Katz Law Firm represent persons who have been injured due to the negligence of others in the metro Atlanta region and across Georgia.