WRSH partner Bill Hepner obtained a $3.2 million settlement at mediation for our client, a member of the Pointers Cleaners and Caulkers Union – Local 1, who was injured when he fell from a scaffold while doing his job. Our client, 60 years old at the time of his accident, sustained rib fractures and herniations to his cervical spine, requiring fusion surgery. He later required additional revision surgeries to his neck.
A number of months prior to the mediation, Bill obtained summary judgment on liability, so when the case came up for trial, the defendants could not argue that they were not at fault. Bill was able to win summary judgment despite the fact that the plaintiff testified to a number of slightly different versions of the accident.
The defendants argued that the plaintiff complained of neck pain and associated problems to his doctors prior to the accident. X-rays taken before the accident showed severe problems with his neck. Therefore, the defendants argued, he would have needed the surgery had the accident not occurred. Lost earnings were not a significant factor in the settlement.
The case was about one year away from trial when it was settled.