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By John Kristensen of Kristensen, LLP posted in Wrongful Death on Friday, December 1, 2017.
Family of Minnesota Teen Awarded $2 Million in Wrongful Death Lawsuit

What should have been a routine dental procedure quickly turned into a parent’s worst nightmare? On June 9, 2015, seventeen-year-old Sydney Galleger of Edina, MN visited a dentist to have her wisdom teeth removed. But when she placed under anesthesia, she never woke up. The Galleger family accused Dr. Tompach and his staff of performing “negligent and dangerous” actions by failing to properly monitor their daughter during the surgery. After filing a wrongful death lawsuit, the Galleger’s will receive $1,279,600. According to terms of the settlement, their personal injury law firm will receive $740,000 and the family’s health insurance provider was awarded $40,400 for medical expenses related to the death.

A Preventable Tragedy Due to Negligence

There is nothing more devastating for a parent than to lose their child. Although a wrongful death lawsuit cannot bring your loved one back, it can bring justice against negligent medical professionals. The Gallager’s contend the $2.06 million wrongful death settlement was more than fair. It was also the maximum amount Tompach’s malpractice insurance company could pay. According to the family’s personal injury attorney Kathleen Peterson, filing a wrongful death lawsuit gave them a better understanding of what caused their daughter’s death. In most wrongful death cases, terms of settlements are not usually publicized.

The Consequences of Wrongful Death

Tompach is no longer actively practicing dentistry. He is currently serving on the faculty of the University of Minnesota’s School of Dentistry.  Tompach’s dental license was suspended in January 2016, shortly after Sydney Galleger’s death. During his career, Tompach also provided Botox injections for his patients. According to records, he had no prior disciplinary actions. However, he did settle a 1999 medical malpractice suit for the removal of a patient’s teeth.

Wrongful death is classified as a personal injury where a loved one’s death was caused by the negligence of another party or entity. Family members or loved ones of the deceased are entitled to seek compensation and monetary damages. The most common wrongful death cases involve the following:

  • Medical malpractice
  • Motor vehicle accidents caused by a negligent driver
  • Criminal behavior
  • Death during a supervised activity
  • Occupational exposure to hazardous substances or conditions

How Can A Wrongful Death Attorney Help?

Losing a loved one unexpectedly due to negligence is incredibly heartbreaking. During this difficult time, it can be difficult for family members to pursue legal action. Everybody grieves differently. Many require more time than others. The first solutions are to seek legal advice from an experienced and knowledgeable legal professional with a track record of protecting the rights of family members of the deceased. The Los Angeles wrongful death attorneys at Kristensen LLP understand the challenges and obstacles facing their clients. Their personal injury legal team utilizes a personable and comprehensive approach to help place each client in the best position to succeed. Whether it is in the courtroom or behind the scenes, their team of Los Angeles wrongful death attorneys are committed to helping clients recover the maximum settlement. To learn more, contact their law office today and schedule a free initial consultation.