El Paso woman files wrongful death lawsuit over husband’s death in Mexico

by Benjamin Treviño | June 18th, 2024 | Wrongful Death

EL PASO — An El Paso woman has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the US operators of a Mexican resort hotel. The suit was filed after the woman and her husband were electrocuted in a hot tub during a vacation in Puerto Peñasco, Mexico.

Attorneys for Lizzette Zambrano filed the wrongful death lawsuit June 14, alleging negligence in the June 11 death of her husband, Jorge Guillen. Zambrano survived the electrocution, and was flown to an Arizona hospital for treatment. She was released June 14.

Zambrano, Guillen, and other family members were vacationing at the Sonoran Sea Resort in Puerto Peñasco, Mexico, a beach town on the Gulf of California near the Arizona border.

The lawsuit states that Guillen dipped his foot in the resort’s hot tub and the shock caused him to tumble into the water. The continuous electric current trapped him underwater, and Zambrano jumped in to rescue her drowning husband, according to the lawsuit.

A guest managed to drag Zambrano out of the water, but efforts to retrieve Guillen with poles and various metal tools only unleashed electric shocks on more and more people, the lawsuit said.

Ten minutes passed before hotel workers responded and were able to pull Guillen from the bottom of the hot tub, but by then it was too late.

“There is no reason this should have happened,” said Tej Paranjpe, a Houston attorney representing Zambrano. “Hotels and resorts have a duty to ensure guest safety. At no point did resort staff think to engage an emergency shut-off, not to mention warn guests of a faulty, dangerous amenity.”

Zambrano is seeking $1 million in damages from the U.S.-based resort operators from her hometown of El Paso. The lawsuit names Casago, LLC., Casago International, LLC., and High Desert Travel, LLC. as defendants. It was filed in El Paso state district court.

The Arizona-based defendants did not respond to an Associated Press request for comment on the suit.

Meantime, Mexican prosecutors in Sonora state reported that investigators were looking into “the origin of the electrical failure” and would conduct field visits in the coming days.


Foreign country wrongful death Lawsuits

Jurisdiction is key when contemplating a wrongful death lawsuit for a death that occurred in a foreign country. Most often a plaintiff is required to bring the lawsuit in the country where the wrongful death happened.

In an overseas lawsuit, you will need the advice of a knowledgeable attorney who is familiar with the other country’s civil laws regarding liability, caps on damages (if any), and its statute of limitations. For example, the Texas wrongful death statute of limitations is two years from the date the cause of action arises. However, that may not be the case in the country where you need to file suit.

In some cases, a plaintiff does not have to file a wrongful death lawsuit in the country where the death occurred. For instance, a resort in Mexico might be owned and/or operated by a company from the United States. This would give the plaintiff the option to sue in the United States or Mexico.

Also, some travelers sign up with U.S.-based companies that provide overseas tours. A plaintiff would be able to sue this type of company in the United States if it contributed to the wrongful death.

Then there is the matter of foreign subsidiaries of American companies. In some cases the American parent company could be held liable for the actions of one of its subsidiaries. Keep in mind that the liability of an American company for the actions of its foreign subsidiaries is an intrinsically fact-based inquiry.

Call J. Gonzalez

Plaintiffs looking to file a wrongful death lawsuit for a death that happened in another country need to consult an attorney who is familiar with the host country’s laws and any applicable international agreements.

The veteran torts attorneys at the J. Gonzalez Law Firm are experienced in handling even the most complicated wrongful death suits, including international cases. J. Gonzalez and his team of personal injury attorneys understand how devastating and overwhelming it is to lose a loved one due to someone else’s negligence during overseas travel.

The J. Gonzalez Law Firm can help you understand your rights and pursue the compensation you deserve. Contact us today via this website, or by calling 1-800-CAR-CRASH.


Source: https://www.krgv.com/news/el-paso-woman-whose-husband-died-by-hot-tub-electrocution-at-mexican-beach-resort-files-wrongful-death-suit


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