Supreme Court, Bronx County
Date of Verdict: June 24, 2008
Judge: Dominic Massaro
- Eric Turkewitz for the Plaintiff
- Voute Lohrfink Magro & Collins for the defendant driver
- Wilson Elser Moskowitz, Edelman & Dicker for the defendant leasing company that owned the car
This case involved a rear-end collision on the Bruckner Expressway on July 9, 2005. Plaintiff was a back seat passenger in the lead vehicle. The lead car slowed down due to an accident on the other side of the highway and police activity. The trailing car rear-ended them.
Plaintiff was hospitalized at Jacobi Hospital where she had surgery for a fractured hip. She also had a fractured pelvis that did not need surgery as well as a herniated disc. She was then transferred to a rehabilitation facility until October 31st.
The victim, a 63 year-old Bronx resident and certified nurse’s aide, had been working two full times jobs at the time of the accident. She held a day job with a senior center and had a full time private night job and was earning about $60,000 per year between them.
Plaintiff contended that she could no longer work, suffered post-traumatic arthritis from the accident, and would need a hip replacement in the future. Defendants contended that she had no arthritis related to the accident and that while she couldn’t be a certified nurse’s aide, she could do other work if she wanted to.
The illustration on this page was custom made for the trial to demonstrate the injuries.
The case involved two days of jury selection followed by six days of trial. There were eight witnesses, of which five were experts in their respective fields, including orthopedics, vocational economics and rehabilitation.
The jury returned the following verdicts in her favor:
- Past lost earnings (3 years) = $180,000
- Future lost earnings (4 years) = $240,000
- Past pain and suffering (3 years) = $350,000
- Future pain and suffering (18 years) = $500,050
After trial, the case settled for a total of $1.475M, including lost wages, pain and suffering, and interest from the date that summary judgment was granted.
This case was also the source of a series of blog postings at the New York Personal Injury Law Blog, authored by Eric Turkewitz, which described portions of the trial. The postings were intended to give the flavor of a personal injury trial and the issues that may arise, without revealing too many details of the victim, whose identity has been kept confidential. The postings regarding this personal injury trial start here.