Verdicts and Settlements
Estate of G. v. City of Chicago
$50 million verdict. The jury awarded $50 million to the mother and father of a 19-year old from Englewood who died of an asthma attack. We alleged that there was an inappropriate delay in responding promptly to two calls made to the City’s 911 unit. The City offered $50,000 to settle the case prior to trial.
Judith S. v. Victory Memorial Hospital, et al
$11.11 million medical malpractice verdict. Our client went to an emergency department complaining of headache, earache, and sinus infection. Although initially the emergency department doctor chose to discharge her, she refused to leave when she had difficulty walking out of the hospital. A brain infection, a rare form of bacterial meningitis, was not diagnosed by the emergency department physician, resulting in a delay of the administration of the proper antibiotic. She must live with round-the clock nursing care for the rest of her life.
J.O. v. Alexian Brothers Medical Center
$8.25 million dollar settlement. A 29-year-old man was brought via ambulance to an emergency room. Defendants failed to timely diagnose his stroke, thus appropriate treatment was delayed. As a consequence, our client suffered bilateral paralysis.
M.J. v. Lincoln Park Hospital, et al
$6.75 million dollar settlement. A 43-year-old woman went into Lincoln Park Hospital for a knee replacement surgery. Upon receiving a spinal anesthetic she went into bradycardia and then cardio/respiratory arrest resulting in brain damage. We alleged that the anesthesiologist failed to timely recognize and treat the bradycardia and arrest which led to a lack of adequate oxygen being delivered to her brain.
M. W. v. Rouse-Randhurst
$5.36 million verdict. A 30-year-old plumber carrying a 50-pound toolbox seriously injured his right knee when he slipped and fell while at a jobsite. The man was walking across concrete insulation matting placed at the site. He slipped while stepping onto a curb and then banged his knee into the curb. The matting was used to insulate the ground for a planned pour of concrete. Our theory was that the use of the matting violated a local construction ordinance because it was not slip-resistant. The defendants offered a total of $250,000.00 to settle the case. This is the record high for a knee injury or for a slip-and fall case in the State of Illinois.
O. K. v. City of Chicago
$5.1 million verdict against the City of Chicago as the result of a police chase. Our client’s vehicle was struck by an uninsured vehicle being pursued by a Chicago police officer in Englewood at the time of the occurrence. The City made no offer prior to the verdict. This case set the record high for a police pursuit verdict.
___________ v. __________: $5.5 million settlement against a hospital which employed a nurse. Our client had undergone surgery, including placement of a Swan Ganz catheter. The catheter was removed inappropriately by a nurse and the client sustained an air embolus. Two lawyers turned the case down, as did our first three medical experts. We were able to prove the case with the use of circumstantial evidence, applicable medical literature and top-notch expert testimony from one of the nation’s leading neurologists.
Michael F. v. SM & P Electric
$4.74 million dollar verdict against a JULIE company that failed to properly mark high-voltage lines in our client’s backyard. Our client rented a gas powered auger to dig holes for a fence. When the client dug down with the auger, he hit a high voltage line causing him to be thrown and knocked unconscious. Our client suffered from an electrical shock injury, which over time caused his nerve endings to die prematurely. The nerve injury caused him to have constant shaking in his legs, which resulted in pain, sleepless nights and interference with his life on multiple levels. The nature of his injury was no diagnosed for close to two years after the injury. The defendants offered $750,000.00 to settle this matter. They indicated they could get authority for $1.5 million on the day of closing arguments. Both offers were rejected.
O. L. v. USAA
$4.1 million settlement for woman who died at work. The client’s employer’s building underwent a major renovation, designed and built by the landlord. The local village required the entire building, not just the renovated area, to be brought up to code. Our client died in a fire while performing her job the same way she had for years, pursuant to a decades-old protocol. We sued the landlord, claiming that there would have been no fire had the area where our client was working been brought up to code. Richard Murphy’s father provided our lawyers with expert insight into electrical work which was instrumental in our prevailing in this case.
___________ v. __________: $2.1 million settlement with truck manufacturer and others for a 54-year old union truck driver who was killed during a two-truck collision triggered by an underinsured drunk driver. Our client was survived only by his wife. We alleged that the truck fuel tank system was defective in that it was subject to an inordinately high number of post-crash fires for various reasons. We caught the truck manufacturer holding back information on a number of our document requests. As a result of a number of motions, a federal magistrate recommended that a default order be entered as a sanction against the manufacturer for not being truthful. Prior to the entry of the order by the District Court, we entered into a partial, confidential settlement.
Estate of B. v. Acuity
$1.95 million award. A member of the Executive Council of a local union was killed while on a motorcycle in Wisconsin. Wisconsin caps Wrongful Death damages at just under $400,000. The defendant driver was uninsured. We sued our client’s insurance company under the uninsured motorist’s provision. Our client had over $1.5 million in uninsured coverage. The insurance company then filed suit in Wisconsin, asking the court to enforce Wisconsin’s damages cap damages at $400,000. The insurer sued the uninsured driver, a man from Wisconsin. It then claimed if the damages against it were uncapped, the Wisconsin driver’s rights would be prejudiced because he would be charged Illinois rates for a Wisconsin accident. After a full hearing, the Kenosha trial judge saw through the insurance company’s argument, noting that the uninsured driver would never be able to pay $400,000, let alone $1,500,000. The company still refused to pay its limits. We then tried the case and obtained an award of $1.95 million.
T. H. v. W.S. Darley Co.
$2 million settlement. A Des Plaines firefighter fractured both heels when he fell from a 9-year old fire truck designed with improper hand rails. He had been very seriously injured in the occurrence, but the case was compromised six months before trial; at that time, our client reinjured one of his legs in a second incident as he was working on a ladder while performing construction work on his home. The case settled while on trial for more than twice the prior high verdict in a case involving a bilateral heel fracture.
K.S. v. N. M. Hospital
$6.5 million verdict. Our client was a newborn who developed respiratory distress that was treated inappropriately by the hospital staff, resulting in collapsed lungs, which in turn led to oxygen deprivation and injury to the newborn’s central nervous system. The defendants offered $0 to settle prior to the jury verdict.
S.P. v. M.M. Hospital
$4.6 million verdict. Our client was the family of a mother of a newborn who died one month post-delivery from an improperly treated infection. The defendants offered $0 to settle prior to the jury verdict.
T.R. v. Monee Ready Mix
$2.68 million verdict. Our client, a maintenance worker, fell from a defective scaffold, breaking both elbows. The verdict was against the scaffold owner. The defendants offered $600,000.00 to settle prior to the jury verdict.
T.T. v. NorthWestern Railroad
$3.5 million verdict. Our client, a union railroad worker, fell through an opening in a bridge deck, causing multiple fractures and post-traumatic stress disorder. We alleged lack of fall protection. The defendant offered $175,000.00 to settle prior to the jury verdict.
E. S. v. H & B Printing, Inc.
$2.8 million verdict. Our client, an HVAC worker, was injured when a gantry crane supporting a heavy machine part collapsed on the repairman, causing severe leg fractures. We brought a product liability case against the manufacturer of the crane. The defendant offered $300,000.00 to settle prior to the jury verdict.
Estate of Lopez v. _______ Law Offices
Another personal injury firm was retained in a case where a 14-year-old mentally challenged student was in a swimming pool at school. While there, she had a seizure and drowned. The other firm reviewed the police report and concluded that the school was not liable for the girl’s death. However, that firm then provided our client with bad legal advice, telling the father that he had two years from the date of his daughter’s death within which to file a lawsuit. That advice was erroneous, because the statute of limitations against this particular defendant was only one year.
The client came to see us about fourteen months after his daughter’s death. Our investigation disclosed that the statement to the police that there were four teachers monitoring the pool from four stations on the deck of the pool was incorrect. In reality, there was only one person supposedly watching ten students. That teacher has since testified that she saw the daughter stiffen up, as though having a seizure. Instead of calling for help or providing help for the girl, the teacher turned to check up on the status of another student. The other student had a soiled diaper and was being attended to by two other teachers. In the interim, our client’s daughter went on to have a seizure and then drowned.
Our case was originally dismissed for legal reasons. We went to the appellate court and obtained a reversal of that dismissal and reinstatement of our client’s case. The Illinois Supreme Court refused a further appeal. The case was settled for an amount which must remain confidential at the insistence of the Defendant.