Professionals Must Act Reasonably
We represented a family who hired a structural engineer to design a large retaining wall at the site of their new home. The structural engineer’s design was not in accordance with the recommendations outlined in the geotechnical report. The retaining wall failed, damaging equipment on the scene and barely missing the homeowners and others on the scene. As a result of the failure, the homeowners experienced significant delay in the construction of their home and incurred substantial expenses. The case was settled at mediation for a confidential amount.
Negligent Realtor and Seller Leave Buyer Stranded Without a Home ($500,000 Settlement)
Our client purchased a beautiful property to build his dream home. Unfortunately, the realtor made a mistake that prevented our client from building for many years after he bought the property. The realtor and seller settled for $500,000.
Business Owner Admitted He Made a Mistake, But His Insurance Company Betrayed Him
We represented teenage girls who were molested by the manager of their place of employment. We brought suit against the employer for negligent hiring and supervision. The employer’s insurance carrier refused to provide insurance coverage to the business owner for the claim. The business owner assigned to our clients the right to pursue a bad faith claim against the insurance carrier for failing to provide coverage. The case was settled for $200,000.
Fight Over Oregon Law
We represented a woman who was injured in a rollover motor vehicle collision who sustained injuries to her neck, back, shoulders, and feet, along with headaches. We obtained a recovery for her of $100,000, which was the total amount of money available to her from the insurance policy of the at-fault driver. Her medical bills of almost $35,000 had been paid by State Farm Insurance, the insurance carrier for the car that she had been riding in. We advised State Farm that we believed that they were not entitled to reimbursement of the bills they had paid under Washington law. State Farm argued that the policy had been issued in Oregon and demanded reimbursement according to Oregon law. We successfully argued that Washington law applied and were able to obtain a complete waiver of State Farm’s PIP lien.
Insurance Company Pays Because They Acted In Bad Faith
We represented a woman who was involved in a motor vehicle collision who sustained an injury to her knee and an aggravation to her pre-existing low back problem. Her doctor advised that she will need a total knee replacement in the future. We obtained $50,000, the policy limits from the at-fault driver, and proceeded with a claim under our client’s $50,000 Underinsured Motorist coverage with The Hartford. The Hartford refused to pay their policy limits, so the case proceeded to arbitration where an arbitration panel awarded our client $250,000. We made a bad faith claim against The Hartford for their failure to make a reasonable settlement offer. The bad faith claim was settled for an additional $35,000 for our client.
Insurance Company Tricked Our Client
Sometimes big victories involve small sums of money and this is one of those cases. Our client had a small injury case. She tried to settle it herself without a lawyer. The insurance company said they would make her a settlement offer and told her to wait until the very last minute before the statute of limitations ran. She trusted the insurance company and waited. The insurance company made a last minute lowball offer of $5,000. The statute of limitations ran before the woman could hire a lawyer. She came to our office and we filed a lawsuit claiming she was misled. Our office obtained $50,000 for her due to the misrepresentations.
Motor Vehicle Collisions
Motorcyclist Didn’t Stand a Chance ($600,000 Settlement)
Our client was traveling on a motorcycle in Everett when a phone company van turned left immediately in front of her. She could not stop and hit the side of the van. She was self employed and had multiple injuries requiring surgery. We visited her at her home and videotaped her at work and documented all of the hardships she faced as a result of these injuries. We documented her raw determination to continue to work. We were very proud of her.
Reckless Semi Truck Driver and Poorly Maintained Road ($997,000 Settlement)
We represented a woman who was involved in a near head-on collision with a semi truck on Highway 9. She suffered severe leg fractures and facial injuries. We filed suit against the semi truck driver and the trucking company for negligence in crossing the center line and losing control of the vehicle. We filed suit against the State of Washington due to the asphalt rutting on the highway in the location where the collision occurred. The total combined recovery was $997,000. There was significant litigation and the matter was settled on the eve of trial.
Absentee Landlord Lets Cow Wander Onto Roadway ($432,000 verdict)
Our client severely injured his knee when he hit a cow in the roadway. The case went to trial and our client was awarded $388,000. However, the case was appealed. After a two year legal struggle, we recovered $432,000 for our client. (See testimonial.)
Police Officer Made a Mistake in His Report, But Client Still Got Justice
We represented an elderly woman who was injured when another driver turned left in front of her. Unfortunately, the investigating officer at the scene determined that our client was traveling too fast and should have been able to avoid the collision. Our client sustained a fractured heel in the collision, as well as back and neck injuries that required chiropractic treatment. Our client had a complicated medical history, including fibromyalgia and chronic pain syndrome and had a long history of chiropractic treatment. We settled the case for $70,000 without the need for litigation.
Not Enough Insurance So We Had to Be Creative
We represented a woman who was rear ended by an inattentive teenage driver with such force that her vehicle was sent into oncoming traffic where she was then stuck by an oncoming commercial vehicle. Our client sustained injuries to her spine that required surgery. The at-fault driver had $300,000 in insurance coverage that had to cover all of the damages stemming from the collision, including property damage to the commercial vehicle and the injuries that were sustained by the driver of the commercial vehicle. We convinced the insurance carrier to apportion the funds so that our client received $200,000 of the available $300,000, and that all other damage claims would be distributed from the remaining $100,000. We then obtained an additional $50,000 policy limit for our client from her own insurance company through her Underinsured Motorist coverage.
Sometimes Insurance Company Defenses Are Silly
We represented a driver who sustained a chip fracture to his elbow and a fractured big toe when another driver attempted to cross Highway Two in front of him. The other driver sustained significant injuries in the collision and could not recall how the collision occurred. Despite the testimony of witnesses to the contrary, the insurance carrier refused to admit liability and argued that our client had swerved off of the road and struck their driver who was stopped at a stop sign. Our client had incurred approximately $8,000 in medical expenses. The case was arbitrated and our client was found to be fault free and was awarded $50,000.
Young Man Gets Scar on Face ($70,000 Settlement)
We represented a young man who received a scar to his face, but no other injuries, in a car accident. We spent time with him to better understand the unique effects that the injury will have on him in the future. We realized that the scar affected his expressions and had an impact on many aspects of his life.
Meeting with Orthopedic Surgeon Makes All the Difference ($331,000 Settlement)
We find that our clients are dignified and do not like to complain. Often it is our job to ask lots of questions in order to determine if our client has more problems than they want to talk about. As an example, we represented a man in his 60’s who was a hard worker and was injured when the vehicle he was standing next to was hit by a negligent driver and pushed into him. Our client had so many injuries that he just did not want to talk about them. He just wanted to put all of the pain out of his mind as much as he could. We made several visits to his surgeon, who explained the long term, serious nature of his injuries and how they posed additional complications to his diabetes and other health problems he had before his injury. Our understanding of the unique medical problems our client faced allowed us to tell his story and obtain justice for him.
Death Cases Can Be Tricky
We represented a minor whose father was killed while he was a passenger in a vehicle driven by a drunk driver. The decedent’s wife, who was the drunk driver responsible for the death, argued that she should be entitled to recovery of the insurance proceeds because the deceased had terminated his parental rights with respect to our client. We successfully argued that our client was entitled to inherit despite the termination of the parental rights of the deceased. The case was settled for the policy limits of $150,000. The estate of the deceased received a nominal amount, with the bulk of the recovery going to our client.
City Injures Young Boy at Playground ($70,000 Settlement)
Our client’s father took his twin sons into a restroom at a city park. While attending to the needs of one son, the other son opened the door to the restroom. Unbeknownst to anyone, the door was spring loaded and the hydraulic door closing device had long ago failed. The boy pushed the door open and when he let go, it immediately slammed closed and severed the very tip of his finger. Our office was lucky enough to be able to spread the word to the local newspaper to alert parents of young children of these dangerous conditions that can easily be overlooked in a public place. We also insisted that the city inspect all of their facilities to make sure no other similar conditions existed within the city.