Court Grants Dismissal of Gross Negligence and Punitive Damage Claims Against Our Client

Attorneys Carl Beckstedt and Emily Shoup were successful in obtaining a summary dismissal of plaintiff’s gross negligence claim and demand for punitive damages against a prominent St. Thomas timeshare, notwithstanding the Virgin Islands’ new “notice” pleading standard. The Superior Court agreed that allegations of a “failure to act” were insufficient, as a matter of law, to hold the management company subject to reckless indifference to a guest’s safety while playing on a water toy in the ocean. In so ruling, the trial judge held: “There are no facts which support a finding of intent, on behalf of the Defendant, which is reckless or even consciously indifferent. Without such allegations, a reasonable jury could not find that [the Defendant] acted with gross negligence.”

Categories: Case Results