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VERDICTS BY CATEGORY

19

Stopped Vehicle Collision

DEFENDANT’S VERDICT ON NO-FAULT THRESHOLD

Motor Vehicle Negligence – Stopped Vehicle Collision – Defendant driver of double-parked box truck backs up into double-parked plaintiff vehicle

  • Lumbar herniation and bulges – Cervical bulges

  • Torn medial meniscus – Damages only.

Kings County, NY

The plaintiff driver, who was double parked, contended that the defendant box truck driver, double parked in front of him, failed to make observations as he commenced traveling in reverse, striking the plaintiff’s vehicle. Liability was stipulated and prior to trial, the parties entered into a $15,000/$150,000 high/low agreement.

The plaintiff contended that he sustained a herniation at L2-3, as well as bulges at L3-4, L4-5, C3-4 and C4- 5. These injuries were treated conservatively. The plaintiff also maintained that he suffered a tear of the medial meniscus that necessitated arthroscopic sur- gery. The plaintiff’s orthopedic surgeon contended that he will suffer permanent pain and restriction in both the back and knee.

The defendant’s biomechanical engineer/accident reconstruction expert denied that the low impact col- lision caused the claimed injuries. The defendant’s ra- diologist and orthopedic surgeon denied that the films showed the claimed injuries.

The jury found for the defendant on the no-fault threshold.

REFERENCE

Plaintiff’s orthopedic surgeon expert: Alan Dayne, MD from New York, NY. Defendant’s accident reconstruction expert/biomechanical engineer expert: Robert Fijan from PA. Defendant’s orthopedic surgeon expert: Edward Toriello, MD from New York, NY. Defendant’s radiologist expert: Stephen Lastig, MD from New York, NY.

Leykin vs. INNS Corp. Index no. 027813/08; Judge Leon Ruchelsman, 05-31-11.

Attorney for defendant: Richard B. Brown of Picciano & Scahill, P.C. in Westbury, NY.

PREMISES LIABILITY Fall Down

DEFENDANT’S VERDICT

Premises Liability – Fall Down – Slip and fall in tavern – Defendant allegedly fails to dry puddle near door despite complaints by plaintiff upon entering approximately one hour earlier – Bimalleolar fracture – Liability only.

Westchester County, NY

The plaintiff contended that the defendant tavern negligently failed to clean a large puddle situated three to five feet from the door, notwithstanding plaintiff’s complaints about the existence of the puddle when she first entered the establishment sometime after midnight. The plaintiff alleged that the condition remained for at least an hour before she slipped and fell.

In support of her claim, the plaintiff called a friend that was with her that night. This witness supported plaintiff’s allegation that the puddle existed on the floor prior to the plaintiff’s accident.

she could not remember which friends besides the notice witness had accompanied her and the names of several other taverns she visited earlier in the evening.

The defendant further called the EMT who transported the plaintiff to the hospital and the triage nurse who treated the plaintiff in the emergency room, on liabil- ity. The EMT testified, based on the ambulance re- port, that the plaintiff claimed she “stumbled” and the triage nurse testified, based on the emergency room records, that the plaintiff stated that she “missed a step.” The defendant further maintained that if the jury found that the plaintiff slipped on the puddle, it was clear, based on her testimony that she was aware of its presence, as she admittedly walked through it as she was leaving, and that she was com- paratively negligent in failing to avoid it.

The jury found that the defendant was not negligent.

In response, the defendant denied that it had any re- cord of being advised of the puddle. The defendant also maintained that the plaintiff’s believability was highly suspect. The defendant contended that the jury should consider that although the plaintiff could recall the dimensions of the puddle with specificity,

REFERENCE

Maier vs. Tri-Kelly’s Inc. Index no. 019758/08; Judge J. Emmett Murphy, 02-07-11.

Attorney for defendant: Carmen Nicolaou of Havkins Rosenfeld Ritzert & Varriale, LLP in White Plains, NY.

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New York Jury Verdict Review & Analysis

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