Personal Injury: Verdict for $5,100,000
After turning down a settlement offer of $500,000 from the City of New York, a Brooklyn jury awarded our client, a 48 year old sanitation worker and his wife, $5,100,000 in damages. The client slipped and fell in a puddle of oil, caused by a leaking garbage truck in a New York City Sanitation Department garage. He had been employed as a sanitation worker for 15 years as of the date of the accident and never returned to work. A co-worker testified that he reported the oil leak to a civilian clerk in the garage approximately 40 hours prior to the accident. The client's supervisor witnessed the accident and testified that the garage was poorly lit in the vicinity of the accident site. The jury rejected the City's argument that our client should have seen the oil spill and avoided the accident. The client was taken to the Lutheran Medical Center emergency room complaining of bilateral knee pain. Within six months of the accident, he underwent arthroscopic surgery on both knees to repair multiple tears. A third arthroscopic surgery was performed on the left knee in 2001, followed by a total knee replacement in 2004. The City hired experts (a radiologist and orthopedic surgeon) who unsuccessfully argued that all the client's knee problems were due to pre-existing degenerative conditions,including chondromalacia. The client's orthopedic surgeon persuasively testified that; 1) the right knee will require a total joint replacement within two to five years; 2) each knee replacement will need to be replaced every twelve years; and, 3) all past and future surgeries were caused by the accident.