LA Fitness seeks venue transfer in personal injury case

By Jon Campisi | Apr 4, 2012

Attorneys for a national fitness chain have filed court papers requesting the transfer of a personal injury lawsuit from state to federal court.

Lawyers for California-based LA Fitness filed the removal notice March 28 at the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania seeking to move a civil action that was initiated at the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas to the federal venue due to jurisdictional issues.

Attorney Amy Sokolson, of the Southampton, Pa. law firm of Hoffman, Michels & Sternberg, first filed the suit on March 7 at Philadelphia’s Common Pleas Court on behalf of Bensalem, Pa. residents Constantine and Olga Pavluchenko.

The couple are suing on behalf of their minor child, Michael Pavluchenko.

The lawsuit claims that while playing in a babysitting area of the fitness chain’s Bensalem location, young Michael suffered a bone fracture, which required the plaintiffs to expend various sums of money on medical care, and greatly affected the young boy’s activities.

The plaintiffs accuse the defendant of negligence for creating a dangerous and unsafe condition that they should have known about, failing to inspect the unsafe condition, negligent hiring of staff, negligent supervision of the kids play area, and improper training of personnel.

For each of the two counts listed in the complaint, the couple seeks $50,000 plus other costs.

In the removal notice, which was filed March 28 at the federal court in Philadelphia, LA Fitness attorney Thomas P. Grace, of the firm Bodell, Bove, Grace and Van Horn, says the case should be transferred because of the diversity in citizenship between the parties involved.

The transfer notice also states that the damages sought in the case exceed the state court’s jurisdictional limits.


The federal case number is 2:12-cv-01563-EL. 

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