A $1 million slip-and-fall personal-injury suit against a local cleaning company supplying services to the U.S. government is the first civil complaint of 2005 filed in the U.S. District Court of Guam.

Martha Lavarias alleged that on June 23 2003 because of oil splattered on the floor of the Orote Point Commissary she fell and broke her leg.

The case filed Jan. 10 by Robert L. Keogh principal partner in the law office of Robert L. Keogh puts blame on the United States of America and Dubidato SM Conlu Jr. owner of K Cleaning Services for not properly maintaining and monitoring for spills thereby causing a risk to life and limb to patrons shopping at the commissary.

Lavarias a resident of California alleged she sustained a fractured tibia with tendon and ligament damage because of the oil splatter.

Keogh is seeking relief from the U.S. District Court because his client did not receive proper relief after following governmental procedures as set forth by the Naval Legal services Office in Agat.

Lavarias’ complaint stated that on Aug. 29 2003 she filed a Claim for Damage Injury or Death with the Navy’s legal office but the government failed to dispose of the claim within the prescribed six-month period. Because the Navy failed to act on her complaint Keogh stated in the complaint that he must protect his client and file the case in federal court.

K Cleaning Services is a sole proprietorship licensed to do business on Guam and was tasked with cleaning and generally maintaining the Orote Point Commissary.

Also named in the complaint is “John Doe Insurance” company as K Cleaning Services was required under government law to maintain a liability insurance policy in full force and effect during the course of its contract in case of such mishaps.

Lavarias also stated that because of her injuries her husband Walter will be deprived of the “society companionship consortium and services” usually provided by a spouse in good health and of unimpaired vigor and strength and was asking for additional damages to be awarded by a jury when the case goes before a jury at trial.

The case has not been scheduled for hearing and attorneys for the U.S. government or K Cleaning Services have not yet filed a reply to the complaint. MBJ