The Marasco & Nesselbush litigation team joined by New York co-counsel recently recovered $6,200,000 for a car accident victim who sustained catastrophic injuries in a rollover crash caused by a distracted driver.
Our client was a passenger in a two-vehicle collision on a New York highway. The impact forced our client’s vehicle off the road, resulting in a rollover accident. He was ejected from the vehicle and sustained catastrophic injuries, including an injury to his spinal cord that resulted in quadriplegia. Within days of the accident, he was referred to our office by a former client who had trusted us and knew that their friend would be in caring hands.
After retaining Marasco & Nesselbush, our team including partner Joseph Marasco, attorney Tim Lynch, and paralegal Heather Jennison moved quickly to build a case file and secure several legal experts required to reach a significant outcome.
The Defense vehemently fought this case, alleging that our client was not wearing a seat belt and, as a result, should not recover for his injuries. In Rhode Island, a jury cannot consider, for any reason, evidence of the use or nonuse of an available seat belt in the context of assessing damages in a personal injury case. However, because this accident occurred in New York, this case faced unfavorable law.
In New York, if a jury were to find that an injured plaintiff was not wearing a seat belt at the time of an accident, the injured plaintiff’s damages are reduced; the plaintiff cannot recover for injuries that would have been prevented by wearing a seat belt.
In our case, the Defense argued that our client’s injuries would have been far less severe if our client had been wearing a seat belt and thus our client should be entitled to only a fraction of his damages. However, our team was unwilling to accept anything short of a full recovery.
We retained a well-respected biomechanical expert to review the scene of the collision and the evidence from the vehicles involved. The expert conducted a 3D mapping of the site and performed an analysis based on the variables involved. We also consulted with a revered physician-engineer to work alongside this expert. Ultimately, our expert team concluded that the injury to our client’s spine would have happened even with a seat belt. M&N then secured a lifecare planner to testify to our client’s medical condition and expected future medical needs and costs.
When it became clear that our team was prepared to proceed to trial, the Defense elected to settle the case. In the end, our client was compensated for the full extent of his injuries caused by the distracted driver. The $6.2 million recovery exceeded the insurance policies available and was paid in part by the corporate assets of the defendant. The Marasco & Nesselbush team is proud and grateful to have recovered the settlement for our deserving client.