Whether you’re injured at work, in a slip-and-fall, through an interaction with a faulty product or some other way, the medical bills and losses can mount. You may be out of work for some time or even experience permanent loss of mobility and function that has far-reaching consequences.
When that happens, whether it’s relatively minor or terribly severe, you want to know that you have an attorney on your side who understands how to navigate the legal system and who will fight for your rights.
Here is one example of how we won a $422,500 settlement for a nurse injured at work.
At the time of her injury, our client was a Workers Compensation nurse, responsible for tracking treatments for Workers Compensation patients. She was working for QualCare, and leasing space in an office building owned by Mack-Cali.
Our client left her office momentarily to use the bathroom. On her way out of the bathroom, the pneumatic bathroom door closed behind her, but not before she was clear of the door. Instead, it hit her unexpectedly from behind and knocked her forwards onto the ground.
As a result of the fall, she broke both knees, which subsequently necessitated a double knee replacement. She also suffered a concussion, facial injuries and several other serious bruises. She lost time at work as she underwent the surgery and incurred medical bills for multiple treatments.
Two lawsuits were filed on behalf of our client. One was a Workers Compensation case against QualCare because she was on the job at the time of the injury.
The second was against Mack-Cali because they owned the building and it was reasonable to expect that they were responsible for its proper maintenance and functioning.
During the course of the case, there was conflicting testimony as to whether Mack-Cali knew – or should have known – about the malfunctioning door.
Some testimony stated that they had been working on fixing it. Other testimony stated that they had never worked on it and hadn’t known it might fail.
A locksmith who later fixed the door testified, stating that the door closing mechanism had been in place for years and sometimes they fail unexpectedly.
The defense testified that Mack-Cali couldn’t have known it would have failed and was not responsible for our client’s losses. The burden was on us to prove that they should have known.
In response to their testimony we brought in an expert witness in engineering to testify to the point that Mack-Cali should have known that the door mechanism was in imminent danger of failing. He stated that the mechanism was so old that it was reasonable to expect it to be deteriorating. In addition, he stated that if it had been inspected properly, Mack-Cali would have seen that it was going to fail, which shows that they should reasonably have known that it could fail at any time.
It was further shown that Mack-Cali had, in fact, been working on fixing the door since the work in progress had been witnessed. That showed knowledge of a problem with the door.
With both knowledge of the problem and an expectation that they should have known the door would fail, we had proven our case.
The Workers Compensation case settled in June of 2017 so our client was able to pay her medical bills with the awarded settlement.
The case against Mack-Cali spanned a timeframe from November 2013 through its docket date of 2015 and was finally settled on November 1, 2017. It was scheduled to go to trial on November 6th 2017 but Mack-Cali opted for settlement to avoid paying additional court and expert witness fees.
The settlement from the lawsuit against Mack-Cali totaled $422,500. In accordance with the law, the Workers Compensation lien was paid back first and the remainder was awarded to our client for her pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, and disability.
If you’ve been injured at work, through use of a defective product, in a slip-and-fall or some other way, contact us for a free consultation. We’ll let you know what your options are and work to obtain an optimal outcome for your specific case.