Douglas Milch, of counsel with Wingate, Russotti, Shapiro & Halperin, LLP, recently obtained an additional $700,000 settlement for a 39-year-old man who sustained a L4/L5 disk herniation and torn rotator cuff after being hit by a yellow taxi while crossing a Manhattan street over nine years ago.
The plaintiff eventually needed arthroscopic surgery to his shoulder, and a lumbar laminotomy and microdiscectomy to address the spine injury. WRSH had settled the case against the subject taxi cab for $100,000 when Douglas took over the case.
After the initial $100,000 settlement, which represented the maximum insurance policy on the cab, Doug filed a claim for arbitration directly against the insurance company that insured the plaintiff’s family home. Doug argued that the homeowner’s policy issued to the plaintiff’s father offered “additional” or “supplemental insurance” over the cab’s $100,000 policy for household residents injured in accidents, even if outside of the home.
The insurance company then moved in Supreme Court of Nassau County to stay the arbitration, arguing that the plaintiff was not covered under the subject homeowner’s insurance policy because the plaintiff, as an adult, was not a resident of the family’s home.
The Supreme Court ordered a hearing on the issue. At the hearing, Doug was able to prove that the plaintiff was an indeed a resident of the home despite his age, despite an additional part-time residence, despite the fact that the plaintiff was not named under the homeowner’s policy, and despite the different address listed on the subject police report.
As a result, the Court issued an order holding that the plaintiff was indeed a covered person under the homeowner’s policy. Armed with the win at the hearing, Doug was then able to obtain a $700,000 settlement from the homeowner’s insurance carrier.
Because of Doug’s dogged efforts and refusal to drop the case after the initial settlement, Wingate, Russotti, Shapiro & Halperin, LLP, stood by their client for close to nine years and was able to obtain a total $800,000 settlement for the plaintiff’s injuries.