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Toddy and Weinstock obtain highly favorable verdict in trucking lawsuit

December 6, 2019

In the Summer of 2019, shareholder, Joseph M. Toddy, with the assistance of associate, Samuel B. Weinstock, obtained a highly favorable verdict, after two weeks of trial, in a trucking lawsuit filed in Philadelphia County. After the discovery period had ended, Zarwin Baum inherited a file from another Philadelphia defense firm and represented both the defendant truck driver and trucking company who employed the driver. The lawsuit arose out of an accident in Luzerne County, between plaintiff and our defendant’s tractor trailer. Plaintiff alleged that the defendant truck driver entered her lane of travel, and either forced her off the road or made contact with her car. Plaintiff’s vehicle crashed into a rock embankment on the side of the road and she was taken via ambulance to the emergency room. The 26-year-old Plaintiff suffered a closed, nondisplaced, fracture of the fourth cervical vertebra, a contusion of the frontal lobe, an occipital condyle fracture, and vertebral artery dissection. An Arthrodesis C2 surgery (spinal fusion) was performed. Plaintiff continued to complain of post-concussion symptoms, limited range of motion in her neck, and weakness with her arms/lifting.

At trial, liability and damages were disputed.  Unfortunately, the defendant truck driver and trucking company declined to appear at the trial. The Court refused to allow the defendant truck driver’s video deposition at trial, and the defendant trucking company, which was no longer operational, provided no documents. Despite these obstacles, and late entry into the case, Zarwin Baum obtained a jury verdict of only $102,000 for a cervical fusion in the face of a pre-trial demand of nearly $1 million. Counsel argued that the truck was clear of any marks/scratches, indicating there was no physical contact between the defendant’s truck and Plaintiff’s vehicle, and in addition, Plaintiff had made a good recovery. Plaintiff was found to be 49% responsible for the accident. Plaintiff was represented by Edward Ciarimboli, Esq. of Fellerman & Ciarimboli.

 


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