Abby Lee Miller was planning to sue the government for allegedly putting her life at risk while incarcerated but claims her former lawyer dropped the ball.
According to court documents obtained by The Blast, the reality star is suing The Claypool Law Firm and Natalie Vallejos. The suit accuses the defendants of professional negligence, breach of duty and legal malpractice.
In the suit, Abby explains she was released from prison on March 26, 2018. As she was being released, “a female prison guard forcefully kicked her in the head with her boot. Shortly thereafter, Plaintiff was transported to a half-way house in Hollywood, California.”
While incarcerated, Abby claims she was deprived of her thyroid and diabetes medications that were essential. The suit says, “The removal of these medications lowered Plaintiff’s immune system, significantly contributing to the looming health crisis she would soon face.”
On April 1, 2018, Abby says she started to feel ill. A couple of days later she was taken to an urgent care in Beverly Hills where she was prescribed a Z-Pak.
The following day, Abby went to the dentist because her jaw had become entirely numb overnight. She claims the dentist failed to warn her this could be a symptom of a neurological issue.
Abby saw another doctor the following day who put her back on her medication for diabetes and thyroid condition. She received a B-12 shot but did not feel the injection. She accuses the physician of failing to further inquiry into the issue.
Over the next couple of weeks, Abby faced numerous health issues and visited multiple Urgent Care rooms. She accuses the staff of treating her in a dismissing manner and “insinuating that she was fabricating her symptoms to get out of the half-way house.”
The reality star continued to see multiple doctors who she claims were dismissive. On April 13, 2018, Abby says her doctor wanted her to have an MRI taken. During the MRI, “Plaintiff’s limbs flailed about uncontrollably. Plaintiff was later told it was an episode of involuntary spasmodic movement. By the time healthcare workers took Plaintiff out of the MRI machine, her blood pressure had plummeted to dangerously life-threatening levels. She was promptly admitted to the Intensive Care Unit of the same hospital.
In early April 2018, Abby says she slowly become paralyzed from the neck down. “Additionally, Plaintiff temporarily lost the ability to feed herself and her words became slurred.”
Abby says at this point they finally diagnosed her with Burkitt Lymphoma. Between April 2018 and November 2018, Abby underwent 10 rounds of chemotherapy.
The reality star says she contacted Brian Claypool of The Claypool Law Firm to “address all the catastrophic medical failures which led to her paralysis.” Abby wanted to bring a case against the government for providing her with doctors who failed to do their job. She paid him $7,000 to start working on her case.
Abby says the lawyer left her hanging for months without giving her updates. She says a law firm associate, Natalie Vallejos, emailed her on April 16, 2019. The letter said the statue of limitations had run out on Abby’s claim and they could no longer file the lawsuit.
The “Dance Moms” star says due to the law firm’s actions she can never bring assault and battery claims against the government.
Abby says she remains in a wheelchair and is a paraplegic. “She requires daily assistance with routine tasks such as dressing and bathing. She will require extensive physical therapy for the remainder of her life. On average, Ms. Miller will have uninsured costs of at least $70,000 every year for the rest of her life. Ms. Miller has experienced difficulty finding housing that is handicap accessible.”
The suit adds, “Ms. Miller earns her living as a dance choreographer, and while she has an optimistic outlook and tires to make the best of every day, there are limitations on her ability to teach dance without the use of her legs, thus impairing her ability to earn a living in the only career she has known.”
The suit is seeking $2.5 million in damages for the emotional distress and financial loss.