Since 1982, trying personal cases, representing those injured by the negligence of others (vehicles, premises, product, etc.) or in the course of their employment.
Property - Contracts - Business
Criminal & Traffic
WHEN READING THE DESCRIPTIONS OF THESE PAST CASES, PLEASE KEEP THIS IN MIND:
1) THE OUTCOME OF A PARTICULAR MATTER DEPENDS ON A VARIETY OF FACTORS UNIQUE TO THAT CASE.; AND
2) CASE DESCRIPTIONS ARE NOT INTENDED TO GUARANTEE OR PREDICT ANY SIMILAR OR PARTICULAR RESULT IN THE FUTURE AND YOU SHOULD NOT ASSUME THAT A SIMILAR RESULT CAN BE OBTAINED IN A LEGAL MATTER OF INTEREST TO YOU.
Elevator Accidents – Sudden Stop – Product Liability – “David Beats Goliath Third Time”
Three cases against Otis Elevator Company, the world’s first and largest manufacturer and maintainer of elevators, on behalf of three hospital workers who were injured on a hospital service elevator in three separate accidents involving sudden, unexpected 4 mph stops caused by negligently designed, manufactured and maintained elevator door safety edges. The unexpectedness of the stops caused significant injury to each worker in each of the three accidents (1staccident – fracture to the transverse process of the first lumbar vertebra, sensory neuropathy, depression, emotional stress and precipitation of diabetic condition; 2nd accident – complete obliteration of the intervertebral disk between the 4thand 5th lumbar vertebra, a compression fracture of the T-12 (thoraic) vertebral body, clinical depression; and 3rd accident – chronic pain syndrome, rupture of the cervical intervertebral disk between the 6th and 7th cervical vertebra).
Elevator experts testified on the issues of strict liability, negligent design, manufacture and maintenance of the elevator. A mechanical engineer testified for Otis that a four mile per hour stop on an elevator could not have caused injury. A rebuttal expert witness, a college professor, reputed author, and physicist, testified that considering issues of time vs. speed, change, weight, dynamic behavior, biomechanics, and gravitational forces, the medical physics of such an abrupt stop were sufficient to cause a intervertebral disk herniation.
Two of the cases involved appeals before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit concerning legal issues regarding strict liability, negligent design, manufacture, evidence of prior similar accidents, and res ipsa loquitur. In one of the cases, even though the plaintiff had been awarded a verdict he could not collect on the judgment because the federal judge was taking an inordinate amount of time to rule on post-trial motions. An extraordinary appellate procedure was employed when a writ of mandamus was filed on behalf of the plaintiff seeking from the U.S. Court of Appeals an order that the federal judge rule on the post-trial motions, The federal judge ruled shortly after the filing of the writ and the judgment was then paid by Otis. This triple triumph was the subject of news articles in The Washington Times, July 31, 1987, “David Beats Goliath Third Time” and D.C. Legal Times, August 3, 1987 article “Ups and Downs”.
It is important to note that Otis Elevator never offered fair settlements to any of the three hospital workers. Each of these plaintiffs had to try their respective cases in federal court. Not surprisingly, the three juries returned verdicts totaling $1.5 million, the amount demanded by these hospital workers to settle trial before trial and which they collected after judgment with interest.
Steam Boiler Explosion / Wrongful Death/Survival Action/ Emotional Distress
D.C. area’s largest real estate developer/manager sued for wrongful death and injury of two maintenance workers (uncle and nephew). Building’s steam boiler exploded, causing 80% third degree burns and death three weeks later to one worker. The other worker, the decedent’s nephew, suffered burns and witnessed his uncle sustain massive, horrid injury.
Liability of defendant for this explosion was based on a testimony of an OSHA/steamfitter expert concerning failure to inspect, follow proper cool down and manual procedures not done that are employed by qualified steamfitters in that industry. The first trial judge granted Defendant’s Motion for Summary Judgment. This decision was appealed and successfully reversed in D.C. Court of Appeals, Henderson vs. Charles E. Smith Management Co., 567 A.2d 462 (DC 1988). Appellate issues included employer/employee control and standard of review for summary judgment.The case was then tried before a jury which awarded $1.1 million verdict/judgment, which was promptly paid by the defendant. Among the first cases in the District of Columbia to persuade a Superior Court jury to award damages based on the emotional distress of watching the serious injuring of a close relative. Williams vs. Baker, 572 A.2d 1062 (DC 1990) a D.C. Court of Appeals case that paved the way for the new tort. Reported in D.C. Legal Times, 10/15/90, Million Dollar Verdict; Metro Verdicts Monthly, Volume 2, Number 12, page 470. Worksite Accident Maintenance Workers Burns
Negligent Supervision – Geriatric Care Agency – Embezzlement – Home Aide –
On behalf of a conservator, prosecuted suit against geriatric care agency for its negligent screening and supervision of its employee, a home aide who stole over $492,000 from the checking account of the elderly, mentally incapacitated ward she was caring for. Home aide used some of the money to pay mortgage, maintenance and improvements on her own home. An expert in the field geriatric care management testified that the writing these checks by the home aide and the lack of supervision of activities in the home were a breach in the standard of care for the geriatric care management industry that the hires, trains, places and supervises such aides. Parties reached a lump-sum-settlement in this case with the mediation assistance of the presiding judge.
The home aide, indicted for grand larceny by a Grand Jury in the Arlington County Circuit Court, pled guilty to these charges. In a suit against home aide in Arlington County Circuit Court, a Decree on Default was entered and its was decreed, among other things, that monies converted to the benefit of her property created a construction trust in her home in favor of the geriatric ward and directing her to execute forthwith a deed to convey title The home aide had attempted to sell her home by entering into a purchase contract with a third-party purchaser, however, conservator subsequently placed a lis penden on the property to stop the sale. The buyer instituted suit in City of Alexandria Circuit Court to force a sale and also placed a lis penden on the property to impede conservator from selling the property that had been deeded over to the conservator pursuant to the Arlington Circuit Court’s decree. At a hearing on the motion for summary, the buyer and conservator agreed to a price, the case was settled and the house sold and those monies returned to the ward’s estate.
These litigations involved a myriad of issues including legal issues of negligence, fraud, misrepresentation, conversion, equitable principles such as bona fide purchaser, constructive trust, accounting, injunction, breach of fiduciary duty and procedural issues such as lis penden, default and order to show cause why defendant should not be held in contempt for failing to comply with decree.
Interior Demolition – Floor Collapse – OSHA Violations -– 25 ft Fall – Fractured Vertebrae
Settlement of demolition worker’s personal suit against developer and general contractor for multiple injuries he sustained from an axial loading trauma when a structural beam and floor collapsed during the interior demolition of seven turn of the century contiguous row houses in being gutted for construction of a 16 unit condominium in Washington, D.C. The worker fell 25 feet and landed on the level below fracturing his coccyx, and T-12 vertebra and accelerating degeneration of the thoracic, lumbar, sacral and coccyx areas of the spine.
An expert in construction and workplace accidents, safety standards and regulations and former Director of Safety Standards, U.S. Department Of Labor, Occupational Safety and Health Administration testified at deposition as to industry standards for demolition. The Demolition Safety Manual from the National Association of Demolition Contractors, The Manual of Accident Prevention in Construction, Associated General Contractors, Chapter 14, Demolition; the ANSI code and OSHA standards required that before commencing the demolition the general contractor should have and failed to perform a competent engineering survey and inspection for the strength and/or structural integrity of the floors, structural beams, and fasteners, including an assessment of dimensions of the wood involved; the age of the material; its physical condition; structural problems; the presence of moisture inside the building; outside exposure; and fire damage. The developer’s website contained text and revealed photos taken 5 days prior to the accident that corroborated the unsafe, deteriorated, fire ravaged and structurally unsound condition of the floors and structural members. The case was settled before trial by mediation provided by the court.
Motorcycle Accident – Rear End Collision – Driving under the Influence – Failure to Charge
Fairfax County Circuit Court suit against a major local publisher (net worth reported in excess of $100,000,000) on behalf of a motorcyclist for permanent injuries (torn meniscus of both knees, acute L1 and L2 spinous process fractures; disk protrusion at L3-4) he sustained in a four vehicular collision near Great Meadows on Route 17 and Old Tavern Road in Fauquier County, VA. The driver/publisher violently crashed his Jeep vehicle into the back of the Harley Davidson motorcycle that was slowing along with other vehicles ahead and threw the motorcyclist from his motorcycle. The driver publisher lived near the scene of the accident. He was returning to his estate. He denied he had been drinking at the Great Meadows Fourth of July party he sponsored and where alcohol was served. The investigating officer testified that the first thing the driver said without prompting when encountered by the officer was “I wasn’t drinking.” No officers at the scene performed a sobriety test on the driver either at the scene or at any subsequent time. The investigating police officer’s report found the driver had committed a “Failure to Maintain Proper Control” violation but did not charge the driver. The deputy sheriff was asked in deposition why she did not charge the driver. She stated under oath that the decision not to charge the driver was not made by her and the decision was made instead by her superiors. The deputy sheriff testified that if it had been her decision she would have charged the driver and she testified that the decision not to charge was influenced by the driver’s prominence in Fauquier County. Civil suit was filed on behalf of motorcyclist for negligence against publisher motorist which settled on the eve of trial and following depositions of the officer, the parties and plaintiff’s medical expert
Rear End Collision – 60,000 lb. Dump Truck – Neck Flexion and Extension Injuries
Jury verdicts against trucking company and for plaintiff husband/driver and plaintiff wife/passenger. Plaintiffs were seated in a 1964 Chevrolet and fully stopped at an intersection while waiting for siren activated fire trucks to pass through the intersection. Inattentive truck driver of a fully loaded (60,000 lbs) Mack dump truck violently crashed into the rear of the stopped Chevy. The treating orthopedic surgeons for each plaintiff and medical experts for the insurance company gave medical testimony concerning the their flexion and extension neck injuries involving strains, nerve root irritation, reversal of lordotic curve, trauma induced cervical degeneration and bone spurring at the neural foramina. The case is reported in Metro Verdicts Monthly, Volume 2, Number 4, Page 163, Auto/Truck Accident Rear-End Stopped at Light.
Negligent Design & Installation – Overhead Pneumatic Door Closer—Head Trauma – TMJ
At FEMA headquarters in Washington, D.C. employee struck in the head by overheard door closing device that had dislodged from its mounting, sustaining head, neck, tempomandibular joint, and leg injuries. A federal jury trial (verdict $100,000.00) against door installer and building owner for negligent design, installation, inspection, and repair of door closing mechanism. The case was reported in Metro Verdicts Monthly, Volume 2, Number 2, page 41. Premises Liability Office Plaza Detached Door. Federal Center Plaza.
Pedestrian – Crosswalk accident – Proximal Tibial Fracture
Suit and settlement for pedestrian walking in the crosswalk on his way to work when a vehicle from behind a stop sign and lunged forward and slammed into his left leg causing a proximal tibial fracture resulting from the lateral bending force. A surgical fixation of left proximal tibial fracture was performed involving a submeniscal arthrotomy and the use of significant amounts of bone graft and K-wires, clamps, screws, and the affixing of an anterolaterel plate. Pedestrian was a former Ethiopian pilot, who came to the United States to work as a butler for an Alexandria hotel to supports his family in Ethiopia and his job required constant standing, walking, running, climbing, kneeling, bending, squatting and all activities impacted by the injury.
Wrongful Death – Truck Accident – Interstate Collision – Loss of Control – Crossing Median
Trucker on Interstate 81 in Harrisonburg, Virginia reached for a soft drink, lost control of his tractor trailer, crossed the center median and collided head-on into a Chevrolet Express Van occupied by a couple from Western New York. The van was pushed through a guardrail and over an embankment. The driver of the van was pronounced dead at the scene. His female companion died on arrival at the hospital. An adminstrator for the estate of the van driver was appointed in Virginia and a wrongful death suit was instituted in Rockingham County Circuit Court against the truck driver and trucking company. The deceased van driver had no children and no relative by blood, marriage, or adoption residing with him at the time of his death. Settlement proceeds were distributed to the deceased’s surviving mother, five brothers, and three sisters who comprised the entire class of beneficiaries under Virginia intestate succession laws.
Worker’s Compensation – Carpal Tunnel – Law Firm Typist – Invalid Settlement
Represented long-typing legal secretary for a partner of a large U.S. law firm who, after complaining of carpal tunnel, entered into $5,000 settlement with the firm without the advice of counsel. Office of Worker’s Compensation vacated invalid settlement agreement of injured worker when abuse of discretion and violation of law was established. When the injured typist then pursued her worker’s compensation claim, the law firm’s workers compensation insurance company filed suit in United States District Court for the District of Columbia by against the injured typist for breach of contract. Five years of litigation involving multiple proceedings with hearing examiners, Director of D.C. Dept. of Employment Services, District of Columbia Court of Appeals, and the DC federal court ensued. Finally, private mediation before a retired D.C. Superior Court Judge resulted in a $275.000.00 lump sum settlement for the injured worker.
Construction Site Accident – Safety Zone –No Cover – Falling Debris
Suit and settlement by court provided mediation (after witness depositions) of claim of federal employee who was walking back to work from lunch with a co-worker on a pedestrian walkway on 5th Street, NW in Washington, DC when suddenly, a piece of hard concrete crashed down onto the top of her right foot from the direction of a construction site, fracturing the 4th metatarsal and leaving her with arthritic changes and residual symptoms.
The general contractor, in control of this construction site failed to adhere to safety work zone requirements and provided no covered walkway to protect pedestrians from falling debris. In violation of Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) concerning construction standards, such as, detour signage, protective barriers, walkways designed to provide sturdiness, adequate light for proper sight distance, adequate impact resistant, longitudinal separation from vehicles, etc. The general contractor attempted to defend by arguing that the city did not require overhead walkways, even though the circumstances and conditions obviously dictated an overhead cover for pedestrians was necessary. The supervisor for a concrete subcontractor testified that a trailer was situated next to the temporary pedestrian walkway where the accident occurred. He testified that well before the accident, he witnessed falling debris on a repeated basis at the site, prompting his company to construct an overhead cover for it trailer at the site. The project manager for the general contractor testified it would have been feasible to also build a cover for the pedestrians much like the wood covered pedestrian walkways the general contractor had been built on other projects. The contractor settled with the pedestrian just before trial and following depositions of these witnesses.
Arrests—Constitutional & Civil Rights—Assault/Battery/False Arrest/Imprisonment
Suit against mall and department store on behalf of two friends, one white and the other non-white. The two other were shopping at local mall department store when they noticed that surveillance cameras following the non-white and deliberately profiling him as a potential shoplifter based solely on his minority race. The non-white expressed dissatisfaction and exercised his right to free speech under the First Amendment of the Constitution of United States by momentarily making a gesture with his middle finger directed at the surveillance camera mounted on the ceiling.
The camera operator then came out onto the store floor and angrily confronted him and ordered “You, come with me! We can do this the easy way or the hard way!” The two friends each paid for the merchandise they had selected while and waited to talk to a manager they had demanded. No manager appeared and they decided to leave the store and as they were leaving, were surrounded by an entire force of at least six department store and mall security guards that blocked them from exiting the store. The camera operator grabbed the non-white patron by the arm and handcuffed him. His friend took just one step forward and he asked “What is going on here? What are you doing?” The friend was then violently and forcibly tackled to the floor and handcuffed. Both friends were paraded in handcuffs through the store to a room where they were detained and then finally released. Neither friend was taken into custody by police. Neither were charged with or convicted of a crime. The guards had no reasonable and probable cause for believe a theft or any other crime had been committed. The store and mall acted as if they had authority under color of law which they did not.
A complaint was filed behalf of these friends in the City of Alexandria Circuit Court against the mall security and department store. The complaint included multiple counts i.e.: negligence; negligent hiring, training, retention, and supervision of employees; defamation; assault and battery; false arrest; false imprisonment; intentional infliction of emotional distress; violation of rights under the 4th and 14th Amendments to the Constitution of United States to be secured in one’s person and effects against unreasonable search and seizure; violations of rights under the 6th and 14th Amendments to the Constitution of the United States to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusations; the deprivation of civil rights under 42 United States Code § 1981 through 1983 and 42 United States Code § 2000a; and Virginia Code § 8.01-1-42 (acts of intimidation, harassment and direct violence motivated by racial and/or ethnic animosity). On the day of trial, with the presiding judge acting as a mediator, and a jury already impaneled and waiting to be selected, the store and mall offered lump-sum settlements to the two gentlemen which were accepted.
Product Liability – Defective Manufacture – Weld – Bicycle Frame – Metallurgy – Spleen Injury
Suit by Virginia Tech student/bicyclist against several major bicycle manufacturers the collapse of their bicycle frame under normal riding conditions that resulting abdominal trauma and the loss of his spleen. Expert testimony of Virginia Tech Professor of Metallurgy concerning negligent metallurgic design and improper treatment of metallurgical compounds in the manufacturing process facilitated the settlement of the case in private mediation agreed upon by all parties.
Vendor’s Negligence – Commissary Customer – Permanent Hip Injury – 85 year old
Suit and settlement of retired admiral’s wife, age 85, struck in the back by a vendor’s cart while shopping for groceries at Fort Belvoir, Virginia Commissary, causing her to fall to the floor and to sustain a left hip femoral neck fracture, displaced, and fractured left hip requiring replacement surgery (hip bipolar hemiarthopasty). Post operative complications ensued and Electromyography and Nerve Conduction Study showed sciatic nerve neuropathy severely affecting the peroneal nerve division.
Hostess – Customer Knock Down – Aggravation of Pre-Existing Conditions
Suit and settlement of personal injury case for an elderly customer who rose from a restaurant booth to use the restroom when a hostess, walking briskly, struck her in the back, knocking her back into the booth and forcefully onto her coccyx bone thereby aggravating a pre-existing canal stenosis and multilevel degenerative conditions and causing increased medical care (trigger point injections and physical therapy). According to the statement of the manager on duty at the time of the accident, hostesses were instructed to walk and talk with the guests to make them feel welcome however, they were expected to be aware of their surrounding and were instructed to give right of way and step aside if a patron was in their path or vicinity.
Beautician Negligence – Application of Hair Relaxer- Scalp Injury – Chemical Burns
Negligence suit on behalf of customer who sustained hair loss, chemical burn, scalp injury (contact dermatitis and relaxer alopecia) caused by beautician that failed to follow the product directions for a hair relaxer system (by Soft Sheen) containing sodium hydroxide (lye).
Trial and Defense of Civil Assault and Battery – Health Club – Altercation
Retained by national health club chain to represent an off-duty employee (janitor), in civil suit brought by health club patron (bank vice president) in federal court for assault and battery arising from a physical altercation between the parties. Jury verdict in D.C. federal court returned in favor of defendant/employee/janitor. The case was reported in Metro Verdicts Monthly, Volume 4, Number 6, Page 204, Assault & Battery Altercation At Health Spa.
Product Liability: Elevator – Defective Leveling, Rapid Acceleration, Abrupt Stop
National Labor Relations Board employee injured when elevator rapidly accelerated, then rapidly descended, and then suddenly stopped. Defendant failed to replace and maintain leveling and controller devices. Case reported in Metro Verdicts Monthly, Volume 6, Number 1, page 3, Elevator Sudden Acceleration & Stop Maintenance.
Product Liability: Metro Bus – Defective Door Safety Device – Exiting Passenger
Suit against Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) on behalf of passenger injured due to defective door interlock safety device. The case was the subject of WUSA Channel 9 television interview and news report, April 24, 1987.
Worker’s Compensation – Psychiatric Injury- Train Operator – Witness to Suicide
Represented WMATA subway train operator in suit for damages based on post-traumatic stress disorder with depression caused when a passenger committed suicide by diving in front of the subway train. Case involved expert psychiatric testimony regarding causal relationship of trauma and Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders classifications.
Lead Paint Poisoning- Minor Child – Vacant Property – Squatter Tenants
Defense of estate/owner of vacant D.C. townhouse in multimillion dollar lead paint intoxication litigation involving issues and experts in environmental safety, epidemiology, child development, education, and neuropsychology.
Improper Design and Construction – Guardrail Hotel – Elevator Machine Room–
First civil jury trial, resulting in $120,000.00 verdict and judgment for plaintiff, an elevator mechanic, against the defendant, Bellevue Hotel in Washington, D.C. based on negligence arising from an improper design and construction of the hotel’s elevator machine room guardrail.
Carwash Attendant -Gear Shift -Left in Drive Position- Customer Pinned – Knees
Limousine driver’s claim against car wash company for vicarious liability, employee negligence. A car wash attendant who departed the limousine with a gear shift engaged in the drive position caused the vehicle to pin the limousine driver between two vehicles and injuring both his knees. The gear switching mechanism had certain special electronic features that were not customary in most vehicles. Just before the accident, the limousine driver, when departing his vehicle and relinquishing it to the attendant, specifically asked the attendant whether he was familiar with this gear switching mechanism and the attendant said he was.
Road Rage – Intentional Rear End Collision – Eyewitness Testimony
Driver in passenger vehicle traveling on highway had turn signal on while attempting to change traffic lanes, however, the driver of a large pickup truck repeatedly accelerated and refused to let the driver move left and over into his lane. Finally, driver safely changed lanes and was in front of the pick-up truck when its driver then purposely collided into the rear bumper of his vehicle causing it to veer off the road, rolling before coming to rest upside down in the median. The pickup truck driver who had been consuming alcohol fled the scene running through a red light. This case settled in suit following the favorable deposition of a school teacher who witnessed the collision and followed the fleeing pickup truck to obtain the license plate before calling the authorities. This eyewitness testified that based on what she observed the pickup truck driver looked as though he intentionally hit the other vehicle.
Federal Tort Claims Act – United States Government Employee – Vehicular Accident –
Trial in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia involving a Federal Tort Claims Act under 28 U.S.C. § 2671 against U.S. Government involving a vehicular accident between their employee/driver and the plaintiff who sustained an exacerbation of pre-existing spondylolisthesis and lumbar disc degeneration.
Bus Accident- Passenger Injuries -Drunk Driver – Red Light Collision
Five court ordered substance abuse program enrollees were passengers on a Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority and returning to their residential program from an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting that they had just attended when the driver of a large pick-up truck under the influence of alcohol (VA Code §18.2-266), ran a red light and slammed into the bus causing each of these passengers to receive various orthopedic injuries. Five lawsuits were filed on behalf of each passenger and each of the five cases were settled early in the litigation.
Road Construction – Negligence – Un-Weighted Traffic Control Barrel – Motorcyclist
A traffic control barrel placed along a road construction work zone on New York Avenue in the District of Columbia was sucked into the roadway by the vacuum effect of a passing tractor-trailer thereby rolling directly into the path of and injuring a motorcyclist. Suit on behalf of motorcyclist against several road contractors for negligence in failing to sufficiently weight (sandbag) the barrel, a negligence per se violation of federal regulations, i.e., Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices for Streets and Highways, Part 6F5 (1993) resulted in settlement with road contractors with the assistance of a court provided mediator.
Intersection Collision – Red Light – Vertebral Injuries – 91 year old.
Suit and settlement on behalf of 91 year old male passenger against a driver of a vehicle that at high speed ran a red light in violation of Virginia Code § 46.2-833 and crashed broadside into the passenger’s vehicle being operated by his son. The elderly passenger sustained compression injuries to the 1stand 3rd lumbar vertebrae, and a severe fracture of the 12th thoracic vertebral body. The 12th thoracic vertebral body required “kyphoplasty,” a procedure where a needle is inserted into the broken vertebra and inflates a balloon to expand the bone to its former height, and an acrylic cement is injected into the hollow created by the balloon to stabilize the vertebra and correct the posture. Before the accident, passenger was walking outdoors as often as 30 minutes per day on a regular basis. After the accident, he needed to utilize a wheelchair or mobile scooter and his walking was limited to very short distances.
Bus Driver Negligence – Sudden Application of Brake – Passenger Fracture Injuries
Bus company was hired to transport a busload of Fairfax bar patrons on an excursion to a Baltimore Orioles baseball game. By the time the game was over and the bus was departing Camden Yards a good number of the passengers where inebriated and the bus driver became irritated with their rowdiness. Then, with no traffic conditions warranting it, the bus driver suddenly and it appeared deliberately slammed on his brakes and suddenly stopped the bus. Suit filed against bus company and case settled on behalf of three passengers standing in the aisle of a bus who sustained fracture injuries.
Slip and Fall – Supermarket Customer – Employee Spill – Cleaning Fluid –Hamstring
Settlement of a slip and fall case of a 68 year old United States Department of Agriculture employee who sustained a hamstring injury. on wet floor at a Safeway in the Cherrydale section of Arlington, VA where he had been a customer for 40 years. The floor was covered in invisible cleaning fluid spilled by an employee who had not dried it or marked the area with a sign.
Federal Tort Claim -U.S. Park Service – Broken Glass – Laceration- Nerve Injury
Federal Tort Claim against United States Park Service, Hains Point, Washington, DC where teenager student sustained severe laceration from broken glass at Awakening statue, a well-known landmark and tourist destination commonly known to be used by as a play slide. The Injuries involved:reconstructive plastic microsurgery of median nerve, 3 flexor digitorum superficialis tendons; loss of thenar eminence due to atrophy, narrowing web space or narosimian palm; and diminished fine motor manipulation, protective response and grip.
Landlord Negligence – Defective Furnace – Heat Exchanger Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Settlement of tenant’s suit against landlord for injuries tenant sustained from carbon monoxide poisoning. Evidence showed the landlord who knew or should have known the property’s furnace had a cracked heat exchanger that posed the danger of emitting carbon monoxide and did not make the necessary repairs despite this knowledge.
Worker’s Compensation – Permanent Total Disability – Fall from Ladder – Spine Injury
Laborer, a Vietnamese refugee, was working for the Department of the Army when he fell off a ladder and sustained lumbar spine injury, surgery, severe depression secondary to chronic pain, and total disability. The United States Government disputed the compensation claim which involved numerous medical issues and specialties (orthopedics, neurology, psychiatry, pain management, urology, etc.) His age, education, prior work experience, and the degree of his impairment posed vocational restriction that were further compounded by language, culture, and personal history. After 11 years of litigation, the Government was ordered by an administrative law judge to pay permanent total disability benefits with cost-of-living increases, as well as, the injured worker’s attorney’s fees and costs.
Head On Collision – Teenager – Future Hip Replacement – Osteoarthritis
Bodily injury suit and minor’s settlement for teenage passenger who suffered a right hip dislocation and a fracture of the femoral head in a head on vehicular collision caused by a vehicle that crossed the median line into the path of the teenager’s vehicle. The treating orthopedic surgeon stated that arthritis, and a significant loss of the articular cartilage could be expected and put the teenager at great risk to develop osteoarthritis in the hip and made her a candidate for total hip replacement as she matured. I
Accident: Pedestrians – Minors
15 year old, crosswalk, Anne Arundel County, MD
9 year old, skate boarder, intersection, Springfield, Virginia
7 year old, shopping center parking lot, Alexandria, Virginia
Defense of Bodily Injury Suit – Expired Insurance Coverage
Defense of plumbing contractor in Alexandria General District Court personal injury trial brought by taxi cab passenger (rear end collision between contractor’s truck and taxicab). Plumbing contractor’s insurance company would not defend against the claim or insure against any losses based on its assertion that it gave notification of cancellation of the policy before the accident was mailed to the policyholder pursuant to VA Code §38.2-2212. The contractor had to retain his own counsel to defend the suit because the insurance company would not accept coverage and defend.
Accident: Slip and Fall – High Rise Apartment – Parking Lot –Negligent Maintenance
Suit and settlement of claim against on behalf of international affairs expert, age 69, who suffered a transverse fracture through the lower patella when he slipped on debris in his apartment complex parking lot. Surgery at George Washington University Hospital for an open reduction and internal fixation of patella implant in the knee joint was required. The evidence showed that apartment complex ownership and management knew the debris was there (remnants of a car wreck several hours earlier in the same parking lot) and although this wreckage posed a danger to anyone using the parking lot, they failed to clean it up.
Suit Against Caterer and Banquet Facility – Slip and Fall on Ice Cube
Slip and fall lawsuit against catering company and banquet facility by 62 year old deputy director of U.S. government agency who sustained a displaced fracture of the shoulder acromiom and nondisplaced fracture right fifth metatarsal walking on a sidewalk in Rosslyn Virginia near the entrance of a banquet facility when she slipped on an ice cube that slid from a pile of ice cubes negligently dumped by a caterer in the adjacent sloped grass area and onto the concrete sidewalk.