Shin v. Massachusetts example

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Shin v. Massachusetts


Elizabeth was first attacked by her psychiatric while in school in February 1999. After receiving an overdose of codeine with Tylenol, she was booked for admission at the McLean Hospital to undergo a one-week psychiatric hospitalization. This was followed by a series of hospital visits and discharges, coupled with practitioner consultations, thereby causing some critical frustration levels for Elizabeth (McClellan, Stringer, & Barr, 2009).

The case helped to bring to the limelight the issue of student suicides. The plaintiff claimed that the institution’s administrators are to blame for neglecting her daughter by treating her condition lightly, a situation that led to unnecessary tension and stress on their daughter, compelling her to give in to her suicidal thoughts and burn herself up. Though no one knew about her initiative of courting suicide during their last visit to MIT to check upon their daughter. During one night, they received a call from an MIT official who informed them that their daughter had perished in a dormitory fire that she let herself.

Literature Review

The issue of student suicides has evoked various reactions from different quarters in the current century. The issue of suicide on campuses has been on the rise. In fact, between 2001 and 2009, there has been a variety of legal review articles focused on the examination of liability issues that arose from the cases of student suicides. From the 2008 analysis, it was determined that only a few published court rulings seemed to address the issue of institutional liability for the self-inflicted death of college and university students. In a similar case, a judge ruled that suicide feature as an intervening cause that precludes the liability of third parties in their respective jurisdictions.

Following the student demise of their daughter who committed suicide, Elizabeth Shin, who was the plaintiff, filed a formal complaint with 25 counts against the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), MIT’s medical officers, the institution’s administrators, and MIT’s campus security officers, who were the defendants. Accordingly, Elizabeth, who was born on September 26, 1980, enrolled at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in September 1998, and was allocated a coeducational dormitory that houses upperclassmen and first-year students. The institution is a state-of-the-art educational center that offers a high level of quality both regarding education and boarding facilities, including providing medical care for its students.

Ethical Issues

Some ethical issues came out from both the defendants and the plaintiff’s side. Firstly, MIT has experienced various cases of student suicides, and their accusers claimed that the institution has a tendency of negligence when it comes to handling the psychological and medical implications of their students. The plaintiff’s act of leaving their daughter in school in spite of her medical condition was considered unethical because it amounted to neglect and banking on unfounded assumptions.

Legal Issues

From the case, there was a debate about whether the defendant’s acts amounted to gross negligence or …

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