Motor Vehicle Accident Cases
$9,800,000 for a 40-year-old mother of two who was rendered a quadriplegic after her car was struck by another driver who ran a neighborhood stop sign at 30 mph. The defense argued that the plaintiff was speeding and not wearing her seatbelt at the time of the crash. Extensive biomechanical expert testimony regarding the mechanics of the crash and the injuries resulted in a settlement nearly 100 times more than the available insurance coverage of the offending driver.
$6,500,000 for a plaintiff who was standing behind his armored truck preparing a delivery when a tourist driving a rental car suddenly struck him, pinning him to the back of the truck and causing his left leg to be amputated above-the-knee. The settlement that obtained was far in excess of the $600,000 cap created by the Florida Legislature to protect auto rental companies, because of bad faith allegations against the carrier which covered both the rental company and the driver.
$5,000,000 for the mother of a young woman who was killed by a drunk driver.
$4,000,000 for the family of a 63-year-old man who was killed in an auto accident caused by an employee of an electric company. The employee, who was driving his own car but in the scope of work at the time, ran a red light, causing this fatal accident. Witnesses at the scene claim that the employee of the electric company was too distracted and made no attempt to brake when the light turned red.
$3,500,000 for a 20-year-old motorcyclist who was killed when he struck a car which was making an illegal left turn in his path. Under the law, his parents were able to recover for the pain and suffering of his loss.
$1,775,000 for a veterinarian who was jogging at night along a rural road when she was hit by a passing car. The defendant driver claimed she never saw the plaintiff, even after striking her. The defense argued that state law required the plaintiff to have been jogging against traffic rather than with it, and therefore the plaintiff was partially at fault. As a result of the impact, the plaintiff suffered an injury to her ulnar nerve which left her hand partially paralyzed and in need of future surgery. Due to the bad faith claims handling practices of the defendant’s insurance company, the company settled the case for one hundred and fifty times more than the defendant’s $10,000 insurance policy limits.
Medical Negligence, Malpractice Cases
$38,000,000 for twin boys who were rendered blind by the negligence of an ophthalmologist.
$9,5000,000 for a young boy who suffered brain damage as a result of nursing negligence.
$2,400,000 for the parents of a young man who committed suicide after being improperly discharged from a mental health facility.
$2,225,000 for a plaintiff who sued a team of doctors and a pharmaceutical company when his regimen of prescriptions for a heart condition and high cholesterol was modified by his treating physician to include two drugs that were specifically contraindicated by the drug manufacturer. Soon after taking the medications, the 76-year-old plaintiff was hospitalized with classic symptoms associated with the drug combination. None of the plaintiff’s physicians recognized this drug error. The plaintiff suffered multiple organ failure and died.
$1,500,000 for a 71-year-old mentally retarded woman who was given an inadequate dosage of an anti-viral medication which allowed the virus to migrate to her brain, severely disabling her. In this egregious case, the pharmacist disarmed a computer alarm warning her of her impending error.
$1,125,000 for a 54-year-old retired physician and father of four who was admitted to a local hospital with chest and stomach pains. Despite radiological studies which clearly showed that his aorta was leaking blood and threatening his life, the hospital doctors failed to properly diagnose him for more than 60 hours until his aorta burst and he was found dead in his room. Sadly, his children were prevented by Florida law from recovering the true value of the loss of their father.
$1,100,000 for an 84-year-old man with advanced dementia and Alzheimer’s who was admitted to a nursing home with a diagnosis of functional decline. While in the facility he developed a pressure ulcer on his sacrum that became infected and ultimately led to his death.
$1,050,000 for a 54-year-old woman who was admitted to a rehabilitation facility following a stroke that had left her temporarily paralyzed on her left side. Despite her partial paralysis, a nursing aide negligently left the plaintiff unattended in the bathroom. The plaintiff fell, and later died of injuries she sustained as a result of the fall. She was survived by her husband and adult children.
A local pharmacy misfiled a patient’s high blood pressure prescription and gave him an anti-seizure drug instead. Within days his blood pressure spiked causing a brain bleed and death.
Product Liability Cases
$1,000,000,000 verdict against Philip Morris USA Inc. for a smoker who developed lung cancer and died as a result. Jurors found against Philip Morris, including on negligent design, breach of warranty, fraud and conspiracy claims, and returned $1 billion in punitive damages and $8.14 million in compensatory damages.
$36,000,000 verdict against Philip Morris USA Inc. and R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company for a smoker who developed lung cancer and died as a result of smoking cigarettes.
$17,000,000 verdict against R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company on claims of Breach of Warranty (product defect), Conspiracy and Negligent Marketing. The jury awarded in excess of $6 million for compensatory damages and medical bills, and in excess of $11 million in punitive damages, for a total verdict that slightly exceeded $17 million.
$14,500,000 verdict against Philip Morris USA Inc. for a smoker who developed oral cavity cancer from smoking cigarettes and had her jaw, tongue and teeth removed.
$10,000,000 verdict against R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company for a smoker who developed laryngeal cancer from smoking cigarettes and had his voice box removed.
$7,500,000 verdict against R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company for a smoker who developed lung cancer from smoking Camel cigarettes.
$6,000,000 verdict against R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company for the Estate of a smoker who developed lung cancer and died as a result of smoking cigarettes.
$4,000,000 verdict against tobacco company Philip-Morris, who jury found was 60% responsible for smoker’s death.
$3,000,000 verdict against RJ Reynolds Tobacco Company for a smoker who developed lung cancer and died too early as a result of smoking cigarettes.
$2,500,000 verdict against tobacco company Philip-Morris for a smoker who developed lung cancer and died as a result of smoking cigarettes.
Premises Liability Cases
$3,900,000 for the family of a woman who was murdered in her home due to negligent security and a defect in her alarm system.
$1,175,000 for a plaintiff who was killed while playing golf at a local country club when he was struck by a runaway golf cart and suffered fatal injuries. Country club employees had parked the cart with the ignition running as they were unloading some bags. As they did, one set of clubs slipped, dropping on to the accelerator of the cart and causing it to take off across the grounds toward the unsuspecting victim.
$1,175,000 for plaintiffs who were severely burned while attending a fondue dinner at the defendant’s home. The fondue burner caught fire because the defendant homeowner had poured the denatured alcohol into the fuel burner of the fondue pot unit without first extinguishing any flame that existed. As a result a huge flame shot up from the burner, causing second- and third-degree burns to over 14% of the plaintiffs’ bodies.
$1,000,000 for a 56-year-old mother of two who slipped and fell in the common area of her apartment building which had been renovated using marble that violated local building codes because it became slick when wet. The fall fractured a bone in her spine which ultimately required two surgeries to repair, including fusion of several vertebrae. The case settled for the condominium association’s insurance policy limits.
Civil Rights Cases
$1,200,000 settlement from the Broward Sheriff’s Office for a woman who was falsely arrested. The woman claimed she was handcuffed, strip-searched and threatened by Broward County officers during her false arrest. After the defense saw the plaintiff’s case, the defense decided to settle. The Bankruptcy Trustee was represented by Manuel Dobrinsky and Attorney Andrew Mitchell Moss, of Kutner, Rubinoff & Moss.