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Archive for the ‘ Court Radio ’ Category

$4.1M Settlement for Chicago Train Crash Victim’s Daughter

A $4.1 million settlement has been reached for the 9-year-old daughter of a woman who suffered major injuries and was in a coma after a 2005 commuter train derailment in Chicago that left two other passengers dead.

The child, Faith Poppel, was born prematurely while her mother, Renea Poppel, was in a coma following the Sept. 17, 2005, train crash, according to an Aug. 26 story in The Chicago Tribune. The child weighed only three pounds at birth and she was later diagnosed with cerebral palsy.

A hospital emergency room sign sits outside a hospital. Image credit © iStockphoto.com/sshephard

Ms. Poppel was working as an admissions counselor at Kaplan University when the Metra train she was riding in derailed as it sped at 69 mph through a 10 mph track section, the story reported. Her injuries were so severe that doctors recommended that her pregnancy be terminated due to Ms. Poppel’s own injuries, but her own mother refused to allow the pregnancy to be ended, the story reported. About 100 of the 185 passengers on the train were injured, while two victims died in the crash. The train’s operator was fired after the crash for allegedly failing to heed control signals that told him to slow the train down, according to the report.

The $4.1 million settlement for Faith Poppel, who is now in third grade, was made to cover the cost of continuing medical care for the child and includes a cash payment of $3.1 million and the purchase of an annuity with a $1 million cash value, according to court documents.

Ms. Poppel herself had previously been awarded a jury verdict of almost $30 million in 2008 to compensate her for her own serious injuries, which will require a lifetime of therapy and round-the-clock care, the story reported. Her injuries in the train crash included a broken neck, a traumatic brain injury, a broken arm and a shattered pelvis.

Faith Poppel’s lawsuit was filed in 2013 by her grandmother, the story reported. The Metra rail company acknowledged being at fault in the derailment, the story said.

These kinds of tragic legal cases occur every day when innocent victims are severely hurt or killed in vehicle crashes through no fault of their own due to the actions, inattentiveness or indifference of others. That’s why it is critical to have a legal team on your side that uncovers every fact to bolster your case and maximize your damage award.

We here at MyPhillyLawyer stand ready to assist you with your legal case if you or a loved one is ever seriously injured in a vehicle incident or accident anywhere in the United States. We represent the families of victims who die in such tragedies as well, to ensure that their families receive every penny of damages that they are eligible to receive.

Call MyPhillyLawyer at 215-227-2727 or toll-free at 1-866-920-0352 anytime and our experienced, compassionate, aggressive team of attorneys and support staff will be there for you and your family every step of the way as we manage your case through the legal system.

When Winning Matters Most, Call MyPhillyLawyer.

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Hiring the Right Lawyer Sometimes Means Getting a Second Opinion

If you go to a doctor and get questionable advice about a medical condition, it’s likely that you’ll go and seek a second opinion.

So why don’t people think about getting second opinions when it comes to lawyers? Actually, it’s a good question that came up recently with a client who called MyPhillyLawyer in May seeking our help in just such a scenario.

Our client, a middle-aged man in Northeast Philadelphia, was severely injured on Jan. 5, 2015, as he crossed Castor Avenue in Oxford Circle in the middle of a block.  He had walked halfway across the road and was waiting in the center of the wide street, standing between the yellow lines of the median strip, so that the remaining vehicles could move out of his path and he could finish crossing the street. As he waited, a car plowed into him in the center median and one of its side-view mirrors struck him in the head, causing traumatic brain injuries and other horrific injuries.

Image credit © iStockphoto.com/Svenler

The driver of the car that struck him was apparently distracted by something in the vehicle and didn’t see the man in the median as the vehicle crashed into him.

The man’s family went to a local law firm and sought legal help to seek compensation for his devastating, life-changing injuries. The crash and aftermath took away his career and put him in a wheelchair. He now lives in a nursing home and has only a limited vocabulary.

The law firm that his family hired did some research into the man’s case but sent him a letter a few months later explaining that they would not be able to help with the case. They essentially abandoned the victim and his family.

Then the family came to MyPhillyLawyer in May through a referral from another previous client.

Three months to the day after we were retained, MyPhillyLawyer was able to settle the man’s case for the maximum policy limits of the at-fault driver’s insurance coverage, getting $100,000 in compensation so far. And that’s not all that we are doing. Now we are also planning to pursue an under-insured motorist claim from the victim’s auto insurance company since those coverages come into play if you are injured in an accident involving a vehicle in any way. With this case, we will seek additional compensation for our client to help care for him and his long-term catastrophic injuries.

So what does this all mean?

It comes back to the legal second opinions we discussed earlier. As a plaintiff, if you are represented by a law firm and you don’t feel that they are handling your case properly, then you are entitled to get a second opinion to protect your legal rights. And what often happens, as in this case, is that a fresh set of eyes and specialized legal expertise can help turn your case into one that can bring you and your family fair compensation that is needed for your injuries, pain and suffering and long-term care.

With a second opinion, you may find that something more can often be done on your behalf than is being portrayed by the original law firm. A key reason for that is that sometimes the law firm you originally contacted doesn’t specialize in personal injury cases and they may not tell you that at the outset, leaving you to find out after you have invested time and effort into seeking fair compensation for your losses. Sometimes attorneys will take cases that they are not qualified to handle just because they want your business. That’s certainly not an attorney that you want to retain.

Instead, you should hire a qualified law firm that can handle complex personal injury cases because they specialize in such case law. That’s where MyPhillyLawyer can help.

These kinds of tragic legal cases occur every day when innocent victims are severely hurt or killed in vehicle crashes through no fault of their own due to the actions, inattentiveness or indifference of others. That’s why it is critical to have a legal team on your side that uncovers every fact to bolster your case and maximize your damage award.

We here at MyPhillyLawyer stand ready to assist you with your legal case if you or a loved one is ever seriously injured in a vehicle incident or accident anywhere in the United States. We represent the families of victims who die in such tragedies as well, to ensure that their families receive every penny of damages that they are eligible to receive.

Call MyPhillyLawyer at 215-227-2727 or toll-free at 1-866-920-0352 anytime and our experienced, compassionate, aggressive team of attorneys and support staff will be there for you and your family every step of the way as we manage your case through the legal system.

When Winning Matters Most, Call MyPhillyLawyer.

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$4.15M Settlement to Family in Wrong-Way Driving Death

The family of a 58-year-old Ohio man has reached a $4.15 million settlement with the City of Marion, Ohio, after he was killed when his vehicle was struck head-on by another vehicle that drove the wrong way on a one-way street which was not properly marked.

Francis D. Huffman died from complications caused by the Feb. 20, 2013 crash on North Main Street in Marion when his vehicle was struck by a wrong-way car that was driving eastbound on Klerx Avenue off North Main Street, according to a July 16 story in The Marion Star.

A shattered car windshield is pictured in this stock photo. Image credit © iStockphoto.com/Svenler

“Court documents said the driver did not know he was driving the wrong way on a one-way street, and a citation was written but never filed in court,” the story reported. Huffman’s widow, Lois R. Huffman, filed a lawsuit in Marion County Common Pleas Court after the crash, alleging that the city had failed to maintain the proper one-way street signage, which led to his death, the story said.

The lawsuit was settled in probate court and Mrs. Huffman was awarded $4.15 million in wrongful death and survival claims, including more than $1.74 million in attorney’s fees and reimbursements, the story reported. The city’s insurance carrier will pay the entire settlement. Several other family members will receive part of the settlement because they had in the past received financial help from the victim, the story continued.

These kinds of tragic legal cases occur every day when innocent victims are severely hurt or killed in vehicle crashes through no fault of their own due to the actions, inattentiveness or indifference of others. That’s why it is critical to have a legal team on your side that uncovers every fact to bolster your case and maximize your damage award.

We here at MyPhillyLawyer stand ready to assist you with your legal case if you or a loved one is ever seriously injured in a vehicle incident or accident anywhere in the United States. We represent the families of victims who die in such tragedies as well, to ensure that their families receive every penny of damages that they are eligible to receive.

Call MyPhillyLawyer at 215-227-2727 or toll-free at 1-866-920-0352 anytime and our experienced, compassionate, aggressive team of attorneys and support staff will be there for you and your family every step of the way as we manage your case through the legal system.

When Winning Matters Most, Call MyPhillyLawyer.

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Man Crushed By Fire Truck to Get $15M Settlement

A 53-year-old California man who lost a leg and suffered other serious injuries after being struck by one of two careening fire trucks in April 2014 has been awarded a $15 million settlement from the cities which operate the fire companies that were involved in the collision.

Kenneth Thai was waiting to cross the street at Garfield and Emerson avenues in Monterey Park, Calif., on April 16, 2014, as the two fire trucks descended on the intersection with their emergency lights and sirens activated, according to a July 30 story in The Pasadena Star-News. The emergency vehicles, from the Alhambra and Monterey Park fire companies, were rushing to a nearby house fire and collided in the intersection, causing the Monterey Park truck to veer onto the sidewalk and strike Thai, causing critical injuries.

Image credit © iStockphoto.com/sshephard

Thai was pushed by the impact of the crash through the exterior wall of a dumpling house restaurant and was pinned under the out-of-control fire truck, the story reported.

The victim lost his lower right leg above his knee in the crash and spent weeks in a hospital for treatment of a wide range of related injuries to his facial nerves, eyes, head and right shoulder; as well as fractures to his face, vertebrae, left elbow, left wrist and femur, the story reported.

Thai has undergone 15 months of additional treatment so far from physicians, surgeons, therapists, psychologists, prosthetic consultants and other medical professionals to care for his injuries, according to the report. His medical expenses have totaled more than $530,000 through July. He will have to buy a residence that includes special equipment to handle his handicaps, the story stated.

The $15 million settlement was agreed to by the city councils of both Alhambra and Monterey Park, without admitting fault, according to court documents.

These kinds of tragic legal cases occur every day when innocent victims are severely hurt or killed in vehicle crashes through no fault of their own due to the actions, inattentiveness or indifference of others. That’s why it is critical to have a legal team on your side that uncovers every fact to bolster your case and maximize your damage award.

We here at MyPhillyLawyer stand ready to assist you with your legal case if you or a loved one is ever seriously injured in a vehicle incident or accident anywhere in the United States. We represent the families of victims who die in such tragedies as well, to ensure that their families receive every penny of damages that they are eligible to receive.

Call MyPhillyLawyer at 215-227-2727 or toll-free at 1-866-920-0352 anytime and our experienced, compassionate, aggressive team of attorneys and support staff will be there for you and your family every step of the way as we manage your case through the legal system.

When Winning Matters Most, Call MyPhillyLawyer.


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$26M Settlement to Missionary Worker Left Paralyzed in Crash

Image credit: © iStockphoto.com/sshepard

A 27-year-old missionary student who was paralyzed in a 2009 vehicle rollover crash has been awarded a $26 million court settlement in Montana.

The victim, Jeremy Vangsnes, was on a 10-week mission trip assignment in Yellowstone National Park on July 21, 2009, when a Jeep Cherokee he was riding in drifted off Interstate 90, drove into the median and rolled several times, leaving him with critical injuries, according to a July 16 story in The Baptist News.

Vangsnes, who had been an All-American collegiate distance runner before the incident, suffered severe brain injuries and was left a quadriplegic from the crash, the story said. He was traveling in the Jeep with two of his brothers and the driver of the vehicle, Scott Minear, as they headed back from a trip to Glacier National Park. All four were hurt in the crash.

Vangsnes’ family sued the Southern Baptist Convention’s North American Mission Board (NAMB) in connection with the crash, according to the story. The group organized the mission trip.

A Montana state District Judge, Mike Salvagni of Gallatin County, ruled that the Jeep’s driver “was acting within the course and scope of his NAMB assignment when the wreck occurred,” according to the story. The settlement is being paid by insurers for the NAMB.

These kinds of tragic legal cases occur every day when innocent victims are severely hurt or killed in vehicle crashes through no fault of their own due to the actions, inattentiveness or indifference of others. That’s why it is critical to have a legal team on your side that uncovers every fact to bolster your case and maximize your damage award.

We here at MyPhillyLawyer stand ready to assist you with your legal case if you or a loved one is ever seriously injured in a vehicle incident or accident anywhere in the United States. We represent the families of victims who die in such tragedies as well, to ensure that their families receive every penny of damages that they are eligible to receive.

Call MyPhillyLawyer at 215-227-2727 or toll-free at 1-866-920-0352 anytime and our experienced, compassionate, aggressive team of attorneys and support staff will be there for you and your family every step of the way as we manage your case through the legal system.

When Winning Matters Most, Call MyPhillyLawyer.

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$165.5M Verdict Upheld Against FedEx in Crash Deaths of Mother, Child

A district court judge in New Mexico has upheld a $165.5 million jury verdict that was awarded in January to the survivors of a 2011 crash that killed a 22-year-old mother and her 4-year-old daughter when a FedEx tractor-trailer smashed into their vehicle.

The crash, which occurred on June 22, 2011 on Interstate 10 near Las Cruces, N.M., killed Marialy Venegas Morga, who was driving her GMC pickup on the highway, as well as her daughter, Ylairam Morga, according to a July 22 story in The Albuquerque Journal. Morga’s one-year-old son survived the collision.

In the latest legal action, FedEx had asked the court for a reduction in the jury’s award or for a retrial, but those requests were rejected by Judge Francis Mathew, the story reported.

Stock image of an ambulance responding to a crash on a highway. Image credit: © iStockphoto.com/tillsonburg

In the original trial, FedEx had been found 95 percent responsible in the crash, which occurred about 1:30 a.m. as Morga, of El Paso, Texas, drove the pickup at a slow speed with its emergency flashers on at or near the edge of the highway, according to a July 23 story by The Las Cruces Sun-News. The driver of the contracted FedEx truck, Elizabeth Quintana, was also killed in the crash.

The deceased woman, Marialy Venegas Morga, was found by the jury to be five percent responsible for the crash, so FedEx, its driver and contractors were ordered to pay the bulk of the jury’s award – or about $157,256,350 of the $165.5 million verdict, the Sun-News reported. FedEx had stipulated earlier in the proceedings that it would pay all defense damages if it were held liable in the case, the story stated.

FedEx, which can still appeal the latest court decision, was ordered in April by the judge to also pay a 5 percent per-year, pre-trial interest rate on the $157,256,350 award, bringing the latest damage total to about $178 million, the story reported. Also assessed by the judge was a post-trial interest of 15 percent a year until the case is resolved.

A FedEx spokesman said that the company extends its sympathies to the victims and their family but that it will again appeal the latest court decision before the state Court of Appeals, the story reported.

The family sued FedEx after the crash, alleging that the company had contracted out its services to a driver who “had emotional problems and was on medication for sleeping problems,” according to the story.

These kinds of tragic legal cases occur every day when innocent victims are severely hurt or killed in vehicle crashes through no fault of their own due to the actions, inattentiveness or indifference of others. That’s why it is critical to have a legal team on your side that uncovers every fact to bolster your case and maximize your damage award.

We here at MyPhillyLawyer stand ready to assist you with your legal case if you or a loved one is ever seriously injured in a vehicle incident or accident anywhere in the United States. We represent the families of victims who die in such tragedies as well, to ensure that their families receive every penny of damages that they are eligible to receive.

Call MyPhillyLawyer at 215-227-2727 or toll-free at 1-866-920-0352 anytime and our experienced, compassionate, aggressive team of attorneys and support staff will be there for you and your family every step of the way as we manage your case through the legal system.

When Winning Matters Most, Call MyPhillyLawyer.

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