Wrongful Death Lawsuit Against US Aviation Academy Moves to Federal Court

A case filed against US Aviation alleging wrongful death and numerous other charges was recently moved out of Denton County, Texas to a federal court. The case was filed on behalf of the parents of a Chinese student at the US Aviation Academy in Denton County.

Yan Yang was a 21-year-old student, and his former classmates have alleged the academy knew he was experiencing depression and anxiety due to his treatment while in school, and yet instructors did nothing to help him.

The arguments laid out in the initial filings have alleged a few broad things:

1 – Yang was harassed by academy employees because of his nationality.

2 – Staff members declined to act on information that he was experiencing anxiety and depression because of how he was treated, and that these actions led directly to his death.

Yang’s parents and their attorneys allege that a pattern of harassment on the part of the Denton County-based academy led to their son’s death by suicide in 2019.

The order, obtained by the Denton Record-Chronicle, moved the case to the Texas Eastern District Court division in Sherman. The case was filed with the district on Oct. 15 and entered the following day.

Arguments for doing so state that allegations against the academy, as well as employee Daniel Bryson, “pertain to the operation of a flight academy,” and therefore fall under Federal Aviation Administration regulations.

“These claims, while nominally state law negligence claims, are actually based upon an alleged failure of the Defendants to adhere to pervasive and complex federal regulatory scheme which rigidly establishes the requisite standards, as well as govern proper course of conduct for flight training and licensure,” according to the notice filed in Denton County.

Essentially, Yang was part of the academy and it was his treatment in his official capacity as an aviation student that allegedly resulted in his death. That means the issues must be handled in federal courts, though the next hearing had not been scheduled by Thursday afternoon.

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