Personal Injury Lawsuit Settlement

Grocery Store Landscaping Created a Risk of Harm

landscape-rocks-liabilityOur client was leaving a grocery store when she tripped on several small landscaping rocks that ended up on the sidewalk.  The rocks were flat and blended in so that she did not see them.  The fall resulted in our client’s elbow being broken.

The grocery store’s insurance company denied liability. The denial was based on the argument that the store was unaware of the condition and had no time to fix the problem.  Our client hired Dwyer Williams Dretke attorney, Arne Cherkoss to help her with her claim.

During several conversations with the insurance company, Mr. Cherkoss was able to convince them that they were responsible since it was foreseeable that rocks would get end up on the sidewalk, creating a risk of harm.

The store paid for all of our client’s accident related medical expenses and compensated her for her pain and suffering.

Photo Credit: Ian Broyles cc

Dwyer Williams Dretke Accident Investigation Results in Settlement

accident attorneysA Dwyer Williams Dretke client was a passenger in a vehicle being driven by a friend. Another motorist, traveling from the opposite direction, veered into their lane of travel, causing a head on collision.  Our client was seriously injured and was transported to a local hospital.

The other motorists initially claimed that the accident was the fault of our client’s driver.  Another issue was that the car our client was in was uninsured.

After conducting our investigation of the events, we learned that the other motorist had veered into our client’s lane of travel and caused the accident.  Furthermore, we were able to contact the clients treating physicians and had them agree to hold his account open until the accident case was settled.

After our client completed his medical treatment, Arne Cherkoss sent a demand package to the at-fault driver’s insurance company and began negotiating a settlement.  After several rounds of negotiations, the case settled for an amount that covered all of our client’s accident related medical treatment and compensation for his pain and suffering.

Fair Settlement for Workplace Slip and Fall Accident Victim

Our client in this Oregon slip and fall case was injured while on the job.  He was employed at a store where he stocked shelves and put recent deliveries in the stock room.  On the day of his accident, our client had started work on time and his initial job was to move cartons of bottled liquids from the delivery area to the stock room.  As he lifted a carton and started walking, the soggy bottom of the carton gave way, causing half gallon bottles to fall to the floor, break, and spill their contents all over.  The liquid and glass on the floor caused our client to slip and fall.

Oregon Slip, Trip and Fall AttorneysAs our client fell, he instinctively extended his arm to break his impact with the floor.  When the inevitable moment of impact arrived, his hand landed on a large piece of glass that severed a tendon in one of his fingers.  Our client picked himself up from this fall and went directly to the emergency room, where he underwent surgery to repair the tendon.  The emergency physicians treating him recommended rehabilitation consisting of physical therapy to regain movement in his finger.

Upon investigation it was immediately clear that the cartons had become wet from a leak in the semi truck that transported them.  Our client had not been advised that the cartons were wet when they were dropped off and left in his care.  The freight company initially denied liability, claiming that it was normal for trailers to leak in Oregon during cold winter months.  It also claimed that store employees were aware that cartons often arrived wet.

Our client hired the experienced and caring premises liability attorneys at Dwyer Williams Dretke to help him in this messy workplace slip and fall case. We demonstrated to the freight company that it is not “normal” for the inside of trailers to be wet during Oregon winters.  We showed that the driver never notified any store employees that the cartons were wet at the time of delivery.  This information was not written on the delivery invoice and had not been communicated orally when the driver stacked the cartons after taking them out of his truck.

With this information, the freight company conceded liability for the injuries sustained by our client.  In spite of the hurdles in this case, we were able to obtain a fair settlement that included paying our client’s medical providers and compensating him for his pain and suffering.

Rear-End Collisions Can Exacerbate Pre-existing Conditions

Our law firm was recently contacted by a passenger who was sitting in an idling car at a red traffic light when her vehicle was abruptly hit from behind by another motorist.  The two drivers emerged from this accident unscathed, but our client sustained physical injuries and the accident exacerbated her preexisting medical conditions.  Our client had multiple health issues at the time of this collision and each was affected. Unfortunately, when our client approached the at-fault driver’s insurance provider to have her accident-related medical expenses reimbursed, she was refused.  It was upon learning this that she contacted our law firm; she knew that she needed the help of competent and experienced Oregon auto accident injury lawyers.

The at-fault driver’s insurance provider gave a two-pronged explanation of why it would not pay for our client’s post-accident care.  First, it argued that the collision could not be the direct cause of our client’s injuries because damage to the vehicles involved was inexpensive and relatively minor.  According to this provider, if the cars were not badly injured in this accident then our client could not have been either.  The provider’s second argument was that our client’s injuries were preexisting conditions that fell outside of the insurance provider’s coverage.

Dwyer Williams Dretke PC has years of experience with car accident injury claims in the state of Oregon.  When contacted by this new client, we identified the weaknesses in the insurance company’s position.  The extent of damage to vehicles involved in a collision has no direct or measurable correlation to the extent of the damage sustained by human beings within the vehicles that collide.  Our client had an increased risk of getting hurt in any collision, regardless of the magnitude of impact or the extent of damage to cars, because of her preexisting health issues.  However, even though our client did indeed have preexisting health issues, it would be wrong to confuse her post-accident injuries with her preexisting issues.  Our client was injured in this accident above and beyond her preexisting pain.  The injuries she sustained in this rear-end collision were legitimate and serious.

Our client’s medical records and history made it amply clear that the auto accident aggravated her preexisting conditions and increased the pain and suffering that she experienced.  We presented these medical records to the insurance provider as well testimonies from our client’s doctors.  These medical experts confirmed that the accident should be considered the direct cause of our client’s post-collision pain and that it had negatively impacted her preexisting conditions.  Armed with this evidence in support of our case, and after several rounds of negotiation, we were able to get a favorable and fair settlement offer for our client.  Her injuries were not simply preexisting conditions and they were caused by the reckless driver who hit the vehicle in which our client was riding.

Insurance Provider Settles Pedestrian Collision Claim

Dwyer Williams Dretke PC recently settled a lawsuit brought against the insurance provider of a driver who backed into a pedestrian in a grocery store parking lot.  This incident occurred several months ago.  At that time, a female customer was returning her shopping cart to the grocery store’s cart return area after shopping when she noticed a van quickly reversing in her direction.  She waved at the driver, indicating her presence and encouraging the van driver to slow down.  Unfortunately, the driver continued to reverse on his trajectory aimed directly at her instead of slowing down or stopping his vehicle.  In the final moments before the van struck her, this pedestrian instinctively extended the arm she had waved at the driver.  When the van collided with her arm, it jammed her arm into her shoulder and severely injured it.

The injured pedestrian contacted our law firm after learning that the at-fault van driver’s insurance provider was refusing to cover the costs that she incurred treating her injuries.  The insurer argued that this pedestrian could not have sustained any significant injury because the van was moving slowly when it hit her, thus the force of impact was minimal and incapable of causing her serious harm.  Dwyer Williams Dretke LLC has vast experience in personal injury law involving automobiles and specific expertise in pedestrian collision injuries.  We were happy to take this client’s case when she approached us and to negotiate with the recalcitrant insurance provider on her behalf.

Our client was not to blame for this collision.  She had done everything in her power to stop the van as it barreled toward her in the store parking lot.  She waved at the van and then, upon realizing that the vehicle was not slowing down to avoid hitting her, she raised an arm to help cushion herself from the vehicle’s blow.  She reacted to the situation efficiently, following her human instinct.  Our client is also not to blame for the injuries that she sustained in this collision.  Our client’s shoulder was severely injured when the van hit her.  The force of the crash tore her rotator cuff and invasive surgery was required to repair this damage.

When we informed the adverse insurance provider of the severity of our client’s injuries and provided them with medical records and physician testimony that confirmed that the injury was proximately caused by the collision, the insurance provider provided a new argument in defense of its refusal to pay our client.  The insurer conceded that our client had been injured in the accident and that the van driver was at fault for the collision, but it claimed that our client was partially at fault for her injuries because she had walked behind the van as it began reversing.  This second claim was as refutable and reprehensible as the first: our client didn’t intend to be hit by a car or to have her rotator cuff torn while walking back to her vehicle after depositing her shopping cart.  Our client was struck unexpectedly and at such an angle that her protective instinct to raise her arm to keep the van away resulted in severe and unforeseeable injury.

After several rounds of negotiation with the insurance provider, we were able to secure a generous settlement for our client.  She was a random pedestrian struck by a driver who failed to take in the environment around him and thus failed to drive responsibly.  The burden of responsibility for this accident and for the injuries resulting from it fell squarely on the van driver’s shoulders.  Our client was ultimately awarded medical expense reimbursement, lost wages, and a lump sum for her pain and suffering.  She was happy to have selected experienced personal injury lawyers to represent her and defend her interests in this unfortunate pedestrian collision claim.