Cuming & Gillespie LLP represented a young boy who suffered a catastrophic brain injury in a foster home. The child, 26 months old, was left without supervision and fell down a flight of 12 stairs, striking his head on the concrete floor at the bottom of the stairs. The child was placed into the home by a placement agency contracted by the Province of Alberta. The child was considered to have complicated service needs and was to be placed in treatment foster care. Evidence showed that the child was placed into the defendant foster home before requisite safety checks were carried out and that the injury he sustained was reasonably foreseeable.

In litigating this case, we dealt with issues surrounding liability, causation, and damages. We retained experts in a variety of disciplines including, Neuroradiology, Neuropsychology, Vocational Rehabilitation and Occupational Therapy. The child’s injury was severe and the experts agreed that the child would need significant support into the future and that he would never be able to live independently. Despite some issues surrounding causation, and a coverage dispute between the placement agency and the Province, we negotiated a large settlement that will provide our client the best quality of life possible in the circumstances.