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Saturday, December 9, 2023
Courthouse News Service
Saturday, December 9, 2023 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Grieving Mom Is 10 Years Too Late With Theories

(CN) - A woman whose son died of a heart attack after an ambulance responded to the wrong house cannot advance new theories in liability, a New York appeals court ruled.

Hannes Hollo had a heart attack in 1999 in Geneva, N.Y. His mother, Josephine Clare-Hollo, called 911. The city dispatcher called Finger Lakes Ambulance EMS, but the ambulance first went to the incorrect address and reached Hollo 15 minutes after the call. Hollo died at the hospital.

Clare-Hollo sued the city and Finger Lakes separately, but the court consolidated the actions. Ten years later, she filed supplemental bills of particulars against both defendants.

An Ontario County judge struck down portions of the bills, and the Appellate Division's Rochester-based Fourth Department affirmed last week.

The justices ruled that Clare-Hollo could not allege that Finger Lakes hid or spoiled evidence, nor that its workers mishandled Hollo.

"Although plaintiff's wrongful death complaint and initial bill of particulars against FLA asserted numerous theories of negligence, none of those theories related to FLA's handling or withholding of evidence," the unsigned opinion states.

After affirming the exclusion of four paragraphs relating to Finger Lakes, the justices did the same for 10 paragraphs relating to Clare-Hollo's claims that the city failed to seek help for other emergency responders and for allegedly "participating in a cover-up."

"Because none of those theories of liability was contained in the notice of claim and a late notice of claim asserting such theories would in any event be time-barred, plaintiff was not entitled to raise them in her supplemental bill of particulars," the justices added.

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