Pasco County nursing home ordered to pay $2M after woman’s death

Pasco County

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TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — A Land O’ Lakes nursing home was ordered to pay a $2 million arbitration award to the family of a woman who died after falling at the facility three years ago, Morgan & Morgan law firm announced Wednesday.

According to court documents, Carolyn Deriso suffered blunt head trauma and died after a fall at Angels Senior Living at Connerton Court.

Her family filed a complaint alleging the facility was understaffed and that staff was not properly trained. It said Angels lacked medical supplies and failed to provide her with adequate supervision, and failed to notify her doctor when her condition changed.

Angels’ contracts for its residents have an arbitration clause, so the case was resolved through arbitration.

The family’s lawyers had requested $5 million to $10 million in damages, but an arbitration panel said the sum was too high. They ordered the facility to pay $2 million — $1 million per surviving child.

“There was overwhelming evidence that Ms. Deriso suffered a violent and painful death—a fall with multiple facial fractures, lacerations, bruising, bleeding and later brain bleeds. The evidence showed she suffered extensively for over two weeks before dying,” the panel said.

Morgan & Morgan attorney Spencer Payne, who represents Deriso’s estate, said Angels’ lawyers had tried to vacate the award, but the panel rejected their request.

“We gave Angels Senior Living every opportunity to resolve this case fairly, even after the award, yet they persisted in trying to vacate it,” Payne said. “Now that the award has been confirmed by the court, my clients look forward to the closure they deserve.”

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