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Frat Party Brain Injury Lawsuit Dismissed

By Andrew Chow, Esq. | Last updated on

A frat party lawsuit against the University of Idaho has been dismissed, but parents of a woman severely injured at the party have other legal options to pursue.

Amanda Andaverde, then 19, suffered a traumatic brain injury and broken bones when she fell from an upper-story window at a fraternity house during a party in 2009, the Associated Press reports.

The Sigma Alpha Epsilon frat house was off-campus and privately owned. But a lawyer for Andaverde's parents blamed the university for causing the woman's injuries.

In the frat party lawsuit, Amanda Andaverde's parents alleged the University of Idaho was responsible because the school oversees the fraternity system, the AP reports.

In addition, the school encouraged students to live in fraternity houses and had the power to impose discipline on fraternities, the lawsuit asserted.

With those arguments, the Andaverdes' personal injury lawyer attempted to show UI owed a duty to students like Andaverde. In personal injury cases alleging negligence, a victim must generally prove that another party breached a duty of care, which in turn caused the victim's injury.

But in Andaverde's case, a judge found the university did not have a "special duty to aid or protect" the woman, the AP reports. UI's lawyer argued the school can't control students' actions on private property, and that Andaverde voluntarily chose to drink alcohol before her injury.

Amanda Andaverdes' parents had offered to settle the frat party lawsuit for $1 million, but the University of Idaho declined. The Andaverdes also have pending lawsuits against the fraternity, Andaverdes' former sorority Delta Delta Delta, and several individuals, according to the AP.

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