Bathroom Ceiling Collapse
WRSH Partner Kenneth Halperin obtained a settlement in the amount of $1,000,000 which represented the full limits of the defendant's primary insurance policy for a 30 year old woman who was injured when a ceiling in her bathroom collapsed on her head.
The accident in question occurred in plaintiff's bathroom. An ongoing leak that was never repaired left the ceiling damp and weak until it finally collapsed upon the plaintiff's head when she was in the bathroom. During the course of discovery we also conducted a deposition of the tenant who lived above the plaintiff. She testified that her toilet had been leaking through the floor for several years and the building never addressed the problem. At the conclusion of discovery we were able to obtain summary judgment on the issue of liability.
As a result of the accident plaintiff underwent a fusion at L5-S1. After a period of physical therapy the plaintiff returned to work and school full time. The defendants also produced photographs of her on vacation snorkeling, parasailing, and horseback riding. They argued that she made a complete recovery and was therefore able to do all of the activities that she did before the accident. In order to obtain a significant settlement we countered that although she made a good recovery the activities she was now able to perform were still limited to some degree and still caused some residual pain.