$8,365,000 Municipal Liability
During a recent winter, a 17 year old female student was a passenger in a motor vehicle traveling on the north side of the Van Wyck expressway in Queens, New York. The driver of the vehicle skidded on ice, drove up an underpass and the unrestrained female passenger was ejected. She suffered permanent partial paralysis due to a fracture in the vertebrae in her neck. She also suffered a fractured skull and pelvis and a punctured lung. It was alleged that the ice condition was long standing in nature and ignored by both the City and State of New York for many years. The record breaking settlement came during the second week of jury selection.
$2,885,000 Medical Malpractice
Our client, in her late 30’s, had undergone surgery for the relief of back pain. The surgeon damaged a bundle of nerves, unnecessarily taking a biopsy in the mistaken belief that she may have had a tumor. After the operation, the patient developed Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy with chronic pain and deteriorating use of her leg. She underwent a below the knee amputation. She has resumed a relatively normal life with a prosthesis. After a long and protracted defense, the case settled before opening statements.
$2,175,000 – Failure to Timely Diagnose
Failure to Timely Diagnose and Treat a Child’s Brain Tumor. This tragic matter involved the alleged failure to order an MRI of the brain made worse by miscommunication between a pediatrician and pediatric neurologist resulting in an eight-month delay in diagnosing a 5-year-old’s brain tumor. Unfortunately, after two surgeries to remove the tumor, it reoccurred and eventually took the life 5 years later of this brave and beautiful child. We never gave up, persisting even after defense cancer experts and the child’s brain surgeon informed that even with a prompt diagnosis the tumor was a rare one and may have reoccurred whether or not there was a timely diagnosis.
$2,000,000 Medical Malpractice
A pediatric ophthalmologist failed to diagnose a brain tumor causing vision loss.
$1,913,114 Wrongful Death
This case was brought by the husband of a nurse’s aid who was struck and killed by a car while crossing the street in a Hudson River village. After completion of extensive pre-trial proceedings, while awaiting trial, the case settled.
$1,835,000 Neurosurgical Malpractice
A 36 year old woman with a long history of back pain underwent surgery at a Brooklyn hospital to repair an implanted pain modulating device. The surgeon contused her spinal cord causing a temporary post-operative inability to move her legs. Over time, she developed many unexplained symptoms and was diagnosed with a psychological conversion disorder with no organic explanation. In spite of the defense that incapacitation was caused by an unrelated mental ailment, we argued that the psychological infirmity was caused by the trauma of experiencing loss of leg function immediately after surgery. We advocated that our client’s post-operative psychological disorder was precipitated by neurological malpractice in the performance of the operation. The matter settled at a pre-trial mediation.
$1,744,000 Medical Malpratice
A young man in Rockland County went to the Emergency Room with an eye injury that was misdiagnosed, resulting in the loss of his eye. Settled during a pre-trial conference.
$1,650,000 New Jersey Auto Accident – Court Arbitration Award
A 43 year-old good samaritan and her husband stopped their 18-wheeler on the shoulder of Interstate 287. They came to the aid of a motorist in distress who crossed over the highway median, striking an embankment and dislodging a boulder into the roadway. An inattentive motorist traveling at a high rate of speed struck the boulder, propelling it onto the shoulder of the road where our client was standing, resulting in serious leg fractures. We overcame the defense that there was no legal responsibility because both motorists were faced with unforeseen emergencies.
$1,500,000 Medical Malpractice
A senior citizen was forced to undergo a below-the-knee amputation after improperly performed vascular surgery damaged the blood supply to her leg. We obtained a court order directing the hospital to retain the amputated leg. The evidence that our rapid response enabled us to develop was critical in obtaining a significant settlement.
$1,300,000 Dram Shop Action
An intoxicated 16-year-old purchased alcohol from another minor. While driving under the influence, he was involved in a motor vehicle crash and suffered a serious spinal cord injury. His blood alcohol level upon arrival at the emergency room was one and a half times the legal limit. Among other defenses, it was argued that our client was not wearing a seatbelt, which would have prevented his injuries.
$1,200,000 Auto Accident
A 32-year old karate instructor with a pre-existing back condition was involved in a car crash in Nassau County, injuring his neck and back. Three years later, while working as a New York Times delivery driver, he was involved in another accident in Manhattan, worsening his back condition. He underwent spinal fusion surgery and claimed a future reduction in earnings since he was no longer able to work as a union driver. His case settled after two mediation sessions followed by a pre-trial conference in the Supreme Court, Rockland County.
$1,100,000 Pedestrian Injury
Working with North Carolina counsel, we obtained a pre-trial settlement for a man who sustained a closed head injury when he was hit by a police car.
$1,062,500 Auto Accident
Jury verdict in Richmond County for Staten Island truck driver and his wife. Five-vehicle accident on the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway.
$1,000,000 Bicycle Accident
While out riding her bicycle, our client was struck by a truck. She suffered a fractured pelvis and a closed head injury. The case settled before examinations before trial for policy limits
$975,000 Medical Malpractice
A college student went to a physician seen on TV. She had symptoms of fever and neck stiffness. The doctor failed to timely diagnose and treat acute bacterial meningitis. The delay caused a two week coma and some cognitive defects. Shortly before trial, the doctor’s insurance company settled.
$925,000 Medical Malpractice
A middle-aged man presented to the emergency room with severe abdominal pain. He underwent a CAT scan but the images were not reviewed. Had they been studied, surgery would have corrected the problem. Instead, the patient deteriorated causing life threatening complications. The case settled prior to jury selection.
$850,000 Auto Accident
An elderly couple sustained fractures when their vehicle was hit by another car pulling out of a driveway on Route 202 in Suffern. There were issues surrounding the severity of their injuries and who was at fault. Settled before jury selection.
$800,000 Auto Accident
A 36 year old plumber was driving on the NYS Thruway, when another vehicle, who wasn’t paying attention, cut him off. Our client sustained a serious disc injury requiring surgery.
$800,000 Hospital Malpractice
Our client, a restauranteur in their mid 50’s, was admitted to a New York City with classic signs of severe biliary tract infection including a concerning drop in blood pressure. Our client was prematurely discharged from the hospital without a blood culture, and they wound up in a coma, with a long road to recovery.
$775,000 Podiatric Malpractice
A teenager underwent bunion and hammertoe surgery. It was contended that the podiatrist failed to recommend conservative and non-invasive alternatives before operating. It was also claimed the operation was performed without the patient’s informed consent. The podiatrist contended that the operation performed was necessary and was consistent with good and acceptable care. A Rockland Jury disagreed.
$750,000 Medical Malpractice
While performing surgery to remove our client’s thyroid, a physician in Rockland County severed a nerve in her neck, causing vocal cord paralysis. The doctor argued that this was a risk of thyroid surgery but settled during jury selection.
$750,000 – Birth Injury – Erb’s Palsy
A botched delivery turned into a gripping ‘whodunit’ mystery as both the obstetrician and midwife denied excessively pulling and tugging a newborn’s head causing a permanent stretching injury to the brachial plexus nerves of the shoulder. The defense hired high priced and well credentialed medical experts who determined that no mistakes were made and that our client’s injuries were mild and our now teenage client’s injuries hardly affected her activities of daily living.
$750,000 Scaffold Fall
A construction worker sustained a pelvic fracture and back injury requiring spinal surgery. The accident happened at a large Rockland County home improvement store. Since the defending corporations were based outside New York, the case was brought in United States District Court in White Plains and settled after several pre-trial mediation sessions.
$750,000 Trucking Accident
Our client’s car was struck by a tractor-trailer in Dutchess County. The driver sustained neck injuries and his passenger, back injuries; both required spinal surgery. The insurance company attempted to discount our clients’ injuries by asserting that their surgeries were not related to the crash but those arguments were overcome and the case was settled.
$750,000 – Auto Accident
A 70 year old driver was hit in the rear in Westchester County. She suffered a low back injury requiring surgery, as well as incontinence. The defendants disputed both liability and damages claiming the accident was caused by a ‘phantom’ driver which forced their car into our client’s vehicle before fleeing the scene. They also claimed that the injuries were pre-existing and age-related. After completion of discovery proceedings, the case settled before trial.
$750,000 – Unsafe Premises
An oncology nurse suffered a head injury shopping at a nursery when struck by an improperly secured planter. She developed a concussion syndrome which became chronic with headaches, balance and visual symptoms. We had to explain a serious concussion sustained 3 years earlier when her head smashed into a car windshield. The insurance company attributed all of her problems to the car crash arguing that the planter incident was a mere modest aggravation of her preexisting concussion syndrome. The defense went so far as to hire a biomechanical expert who opined that the impact could not have caused any permanent injuries. Soon before the case went to trial, a settlement was reached.
$700,000 Ladder Fall
An electrician fell from a ladder at a construction site in Suffern, fracturing both feet. After an appeal, the case was settled prior to jury selection.
$660,000 Pain and Suffering Settlement
A husband and wife, whose vehicle was struck by tractor trailer while waiting to pay a toll, received a $660,000 pain and suffering settlement. Both clients required spinal surgery. This settlement was achieved despite a major unexpected obstacle which arose when the victims’ own insurance company “became the enemy,” and refused to reimburse the surgeons; claiming the procedures were not medically necessary! In a subsequent arbitration, our firm was successful in overturning the denial and the victims’ insurance company was ordered to reimburse 100% of the surgery bills.
$650,000 Pedestrian Knockdown
Struck by a car in Bergen County caused several shoulder and wrist surgeries. The defense attorneys argued that our client was more than 50% responsible for crossing the street outside of a crosswalk. This would have prevented any award. After depositions and expert testimony, the insurance company was convinced that we could overcome this defense and achieved a settlement just before the trial was to begin.
$650,000 Failure to Diagnose
A minister’s wife suffering from appendicitis went to the Emergency Room, but the staff failed to diagnose the problem. She ultimately died from a burst appendix. Settlement against an Orange County hospital on the day a jury was to be selected.
$644,955 Auto Accident
A farm worker in the Finger Lakes drove through a stop sign into the path of a truck. Before he came to us, another lawyer told him that he did not have a case. We determined that the truck was driving at high speed and that the stop sign was hidden by vegetation. Settlement during trial.
$612,500 Chemotherapy Burns
A woman receiving treatment for cancer in a Bronx doctor’s office suffered burns on her arm when the chemotherapy medicine was deposited under her skin rather than into a vein. Settled before the doctor’s deposition.
$608,750 Injured Mail Carrier
A postal worker in his late 40’s slipped on ice while delivering mail. He suffered a low back compression fracture which healed, but his low back pain never subsided which required low back surgery. A few years later he required a low back implant of a pain medication pump device.
Serious case challenges were overcome to successfully achieve the settlement because the biased Post Office, Workers Compensation, and Social Security Disability doctors all ganged up on this accident victim and downplayed his injury, and its causal relationship to the accident. Even worse, each examining doctor determined that our client was well enough to return to the Post Office without restriction. It was further satisfying to overcome the Post Office claim that the accident was our client’s own fault and that the settlement should have been much less!
$600,000 – Auto Accident
Our Florida client came to NYC to celebrate her remission from cancer. She injured her neck and back 3 years earlier. The last thing she needed was to be rear ended in Brooklyn by a large ambulette which we claimed aggravated her spine. Battle lines were drawn as to whether she would have needed neck surgery anyway without being struck. We acquired medical expert reports which apportioned much of our client’s suffering and need for surgery on the recent car accident and not from old spinal problems.
$600,000 Podiatric Malpractice
A podiatrist failed to diagnose and aggressively treat Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS). He performed two questionable surgeries which inflamed the condition instead of helping. We overcame a defense that our client’s chronic and painful condition was a natural result of CRPS and had absolutely nothing to do with anything the podiatrist did wrong. The case settled while awaiting trial.
$584,000 – Pedestrian Knock Down
An elderly woman was struck while walking across a major Rockland roadway. The defense argued that she was not in a crosswalk, and that the driver had a green light. They argued before a jury that the client was solely responsible for being struck. Our client sustained several fractures. Before trial there was a small offer that was rejected. A jury found the driver overwhelmingly responsible.
$550,000 – Unsafe Premises
We never gave up advocating for the surviving daughters of their hard working immigrant father who succumbed to injuries from a house fire in Queens. The insurance company steadfastly refused to pay arguing that intoxication and smoking in bed caused the fire and that their father first survived but then voluntarily went back into the burning building to save a neighbor. Using the legal doctrine of “Danger Invites Rescue”, we were able to secure a fair measure of justice because of an absentee landlord’s failure to have working smoke detectors, which our fire expert determined would have likely prevented the fire from spreading.
$550,000 Auto Accident
Award against the State of New York in the Court of Claims at White Plains for a car accident. Our client, in her mid-50s, was getting out of her car in a parking lot. A State employee backed out of the adjoining space, causing the driver’s door to close forcefully and pinning the woman’s knees against the doorframe. She suffered significant bilateral injuries. The State unsuccessfully argued that the accident was our client’s fault and that her injuries were degenerative and pre-existing.
$535,000 Environmental Tort
We represented 65 teachers, students, and staff members of a Bronx elementary school who were evacuated when fumes from a burn test of capsaicin at a pharmaceutical company across the street migrated through the air into the school. Our clients’ exposure to the fumes involved primarily transient reactions with no long-lasting effects. The case was settled at a pre-trial mediation.
$525,000 Auto Accident
Dutchess County mediated settlement. A woman sustained back injuries from a rear end car accident necessitating spinal surgery.
$525,000 Construction Accident
A construction worker suffered a neck injury requiring surgery when he fell off an improperly guarded makeshift scaffold. We defeated defenses that the general contractor did not know that an accident occurred or that the victim worked at the construction site. It was also claimed that our client was not eligible for favorable treatment under New York’s “Scaffold Law” contrary to legal argument we advanced and confirmed by trial and appellate courts.
$525,000 Workplace Accident
A factory worker was burned when the textile machine he was using malfunctioned. We sued the manufacturer claiming that the machine was improperly designed, creating a foreseeable risk of serious injury. The defendant argued that our client caused his own injury by operating the machine in an unsafe manner but we overcame this defense through our investigation and extensive pre-trial proceedings. The case settled before trial at mediation.
$500,000 Job Site Accident
A construction worker was injured at a drainage project when a heavy bucket from an excavator detached knocking him into a ditch and causing back and knee injuries. Efforts to blame our client for violating work site regulations were unsuccessful.
$500,000 Construction Accident
A Rockland construction worker fell 20 feet off a roof at a residential renovation project in Connecticut fracturing his arm and sustaining neck and back injuries. Although unfavorable Connecticut Law applied, we demonstrated that the job site was unsafe despite the defense that the worker was the sole and exclusive cause of his injuries.
$500,000 Amputated Finger Tip
A carpenter involved in an auto crash sustained an amputated fingertip on his non-dominant hand with scarring of the arm. The case settled before pre-trial depositions.
$500,000 Pedestrian Knockdown
A bank worker was crossing the street on her lunch break and was struck by a car. We overcame the defense that she was negligent by walking across a heavily traveled roadway. She sustained several fractures. The case settled at a pre-trial conference.
$495,000 Nursing Home Negligence
Similar to the well-publicized McDonald’s “hot coffee case”, a 91 year old man received groin burns from hot tea. Despite surgery and hospitalization, this WWII fighter pilot passed away. The nursing home vigorously denied responsibility blaming our client for the spill. When the case started, the insurance company claimed we had no case and would never settle.
$455,000 Hair Salon Injury
The jury found that negligent application of hair perm chemicals in a West Nyack salon caused permanent skin damage. The insurance company offered a nominal sum; accepting our advice, the client refused.
$450,000 Auto Accident
Action settled in the Supreme Court, Bronx County, for a schoolteacher who sustained herniated discs. She was a passenger in a car that was rear-ended on the Cross-Bronx Expressway.
$400,000 – Defective Premises
A wheelchair bound woman fell from her wheelchair after traveling over a grass covered depression in front of her apartment. We argued that she suffered nerve damage causing problems in her upper extremities. The attorney for the property owner argued that any hole in the grass was trivial, and that all of the injuries arose from severe pre-existing conditions. The case settled as jury selection was about to begin.
$352,500 Surgical Error
A Rockland County woman received a settlement before jury selection in Westchester County for perforation of her colon during an operation.
$350,000 Physical Therapy Negligence
A disabled child was injured when a physical therapist used a specialized technique practiced only by a handful of therapists in the United States. The child’s leg was broken. The therapist claimed that the technique used was properly applied. He argued that the child’s pre-existing disability made her susceptible to fractures and that medical records showed that the child returned to her preexisting condition within 8 months. The case settled after depositions.
$350,000 Gynecology Surgical Malpractice
A woman in her early 40’s had her bladder perforated when undergoing a hysterectomy. Defense claimed that this type of injury was a well known and acceptable risk. The hospital had refused to take any separate responsibility, deflecting the blame on the private attending OB/GYN surgeon, but in the end, had to contribute to the settlement because Fellows Hymowitz demonstrated that a hospital-employed surgical technician should have also been more careful in the handling of the surgical instruments.
$337,500 Surgical Malpractice
A routine laparoscopic hernia mesh surgery was compounded by a erroneous colon perforation, which went undetected for a few days, ultimately requiring an emergency life-saving laparotomy surgery, which resulted in abdominal scarring and an unexpected protracted work disability.
Note: This well -credentialed New York City surgeon refused to give his consent to settle until the middle of the trial, just after he was aggressively cross-examined by Fellows Hymowitz.
$325,000 – Surgical Negligence
A 75 year old man battling leukemia, underwent surgery to stop intestinal bleeding. A surgeon perforated his intestine causing sepsis and then death. First refusing to take responsibility, the surgeon capitulated after his deposition realizing that the defenses to the lawsuit were not as strong as his malpractice insurer first believed.
$305,000 Auto Accident
A couple and their daughter suffered neck, back and knee injuries in a Westchester County collision. Settled before trial.
$300,000 Nursing Home Negligence
Senior citizen recovering from an operation in a nursing home fell from her bed, fracturing her hip. After the jury found the nursing home negligent, the insurance company paid.
$275,000 Nursing Malpractice
In Orange County, an improperly administered injection during pregnancy resulted in persistent sciatica. Settlement before trial.
$250,000 – Dog Bite
A 17 year old high school student was bitten at a friend’s home. It was argued that the dog was not vicious, there were no prior attacks, and our client made an excellent recovery. The case settled quickly after depositions.
$250,000 Nursing Home Negligence
An 81 year old family matriarch fell when not given proper supervision and assistance. Nursing staff downplayed the incident and seemed to purposely delay an x-ray which revealed a hip fracture requiring surgery.
$237,500 Slip and Fall
Our client injured her wrist and elbow as a result of a fall on ice at a Dutchess County condominium complex. Settled.
$225,000 – Defective Premises
A woman slipped and fell on wet tile in front of a store in Rockland County. She had two surgeries. The landlord argued there was nothing wrong with the tiles, and our client was not being careful because it was raining. They also argued unsuccessfully that the injuries were pre-existing. The case also settled quickly after depositions.
$215,000 Auto Accident
Our client’s car was struck in a crossover accident. A senior citizen, she suffered neck and back injuries. The case resolved in Dutchess County Supreme Court.
$212,500 Impaired Physician
Our 47 year old client was treated by a physician who was subsequently convicted of possessing heroin. We alleged that the doctor was addicted to heroin and impaired at the time he performed arthroscopic knee surgery and that the operation was improperly performed requiring another unnecessary reparative surgery.
$190,000 Auto Accident
Jury award for a 55-year old Rockland County mental health aide who was a front seat passenger in a low-impact collision with minimal damage to the car. However, our client sustained an aggravation of a pre-existing disc injury. The insurance company offered $5,000 so we took the case to trial.
$150,000 Auto Accident
A 27 year old woman was struck by a pick-up and sustained soft tissue injuries to the neck and a wrist chip fracture. State Farm offered $37,500 but a Rockland County jury disagreed with a verdict of $150,000
$105,000 Auto Accident
Westchester County jury award to our client, a 42-year old hospital cashier who suffered a knee injury. She was a passenger in a car that was sideswiped by a van. Our client was willing to settle for $25,000, but the most the insurance company offered was $12,500. We went to trial and received four times more.
$100,000 Auto Accident
A 32-year-old receptionist sustained an elbow injury in an accident just outside her office building. The defendant denied responsibility, but a Rockland jury disagreed.