Traffic Accident - Pedestrian Struck by Motor Vehicle
William A. Wingate negotiated a $300,000 settlement for a 71-year-old woman who was struck by a van and suffered multiple fractures of her right knee requiring open reduction and internal fixation, a subdural hematoma and fracture of the right occipital bone.
Bill, who conducted all of the depositions and questioned the defendant himself at his deposition, contended that as our client was crossing a street in the designated crosswalk, the light facing her changed from a steady white figure ("Go") to a flashing red light. When she got halfway across the street, and was in front of the defendant's motor vehicle that had been stopped for a red light, his car suddenly lurched forward and struck her.
The defendant argued that the light had changed to green for him and he then moved forward. The defendant also produced two eyewitnesses who testified that when the plaintiff started to cross the street, the light had already turned to red against her.
However, Bill argued that even if the light was red for our client, she was already in front of the van when he started to move forward and that if he had looked to his left, or even in front of him, instead of looking at the light to his right before he took his foot off the brake, the accident would not have happened. Bill refused to settle for less than the full $300,000 insurance policy covering the van. He threatened the defendant's carrier with a bad faith claim against them for not protecting their insured if they didn't settle for the policy.
With the trial date a week away, the case was settled for the $300,000.