In our practice representing people who have been injured in accidents we sometimes hear a client say, “I could have been killed!” or “I almost died!”  Although the thought of coming close to death is disturbing to say the least, the law generally does not, in spite of what some people think, permit compensation for something that could have happened or that almost occurred.

Even so, a jury in Mississippi has awarded $4.7 million to a family which brought suit against a motel over the near-drowning of their two children in the motel pool.  The suit claimed that the two kids, both of whom suffer from learning disabilities, wandered into the pool area after hours when the motel staff had negligently failed to lock it up.  The jury found the hotel 85 percent responsible and the parents 15 percent responsible.