Our client, a 39-year-old man had a reoccurring heart issue and was admitted to the hospital where he underwent a heart and kidney transplant. He was admitted to the hospital for a year. After working with his physical therapist at the hospital he reached his medical goals and was discharged to an in-patient rehabilitation center.
On the day of his discharge, our client was picked up at the hospital by a Hunter ambulance and was to be transported to the rehabilitation center. The transport was non-emergent without lights or sirens. While traveling Eastbound on the Southern State Parkway the ambulance left the road surface and ran onto the grass shoulder, struck and knocked down a light pole, and traveled up an embankment and struck the Eagle Avenue overpass. Tragically, our client died at the scene of the accident.
Our firm retained a top accident reconstruction expert who inspected the vehicle and accident scene and obtained the data download from the vehicle’s electronic data module. After a full evaluation, our expert concluded that the cause of the accident was excessive speed, driver inattention, and failure to maintain the lane of travel.
The defense attempted to advance the argument that the value of the case was small in that our client was not married, sustained pain and suffering for only a few minutes, was unemployed, and had a shortened life expectancy. We, in turn, argued aggressively that his pain and suffering, although short in duration, was significant, and that although our client was not married he had a daughter that now was without her father.
After all discovery was complete and a trial date was approaching, our firm entered into settlement negotiations. Thereafter, the defendant ambulance company agreed to mediation. Months of hard negotiations with the lawyers for the ambulance company were successful, and the case was settled in the sum of $1.975 million. Although this was a tragic case, our mission to provide financial security to the daughter of the decedent was achieved.