We are a referral based practice, and we are happy to evaluate all cases for our clients and push them forward aggressively to get the best possible result. Our lawyers have obtained verdicts, judgments and settlements that total in the hundreds of millions of dollars. Here are some of those results:
$20.78 Million Verdict – Drunk Driving Accident
February 12 is a day Lisa will never forget. It was the day she became the victim of a drunk driver behind the wheel of an Enterprise rental car. As a result of the wreck, Lisa suffered disc injuries in her spine that will require surgery. When attempts to settle Lisa’s claim failed, a lawsuit was filed against both the drunk driver and Enterprise. After a trial that involved several days of complex medical testimony concerning Lisa’s pre-existing fibromyalgia, the jury awarded compensatory and punitive damages in the total amount of $20,786,882. Lisa was also awarded lawyers’ fees because of Enterprise’s failure to accept her offers to settle. It is the hope of Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith that this widely publicized verdict will serve as a wake-up call to drunk drivers. Nearly half of all fatal motor vehicle collisions involve alcohol.
Multi-Million Dollar Settlement – Medical Malpractice
Our 22-year-old client was a ventilator dependent patient at Delray Medical Center. Without warning, the ventilator became disconnected, thereby stopping his oxygen supply. Alarms sounded, yet no one responded. Jairo’s restrained wrists, which were tied to the bed to prevent him from inadvertently removing the breathing tube, made it impossible for him to move. The alarms continued to ring. Incredibly, the nurse responsible for monitoring Jairo went on a break without informing her co-workers or obtaining coverage. Moreover, she left her stat pager, a device which would have immediately notified her that a crisis was occurring, at Jairo’s bedside. By the time the hospital staff finally responded, it was too late – the lack of oxygen caused Jairo to sustain a devastating and life-altering anoxic brain injury from which he will never recover. For the remainder of Jairo’s life, he will be bedridden, blind, unable to communicate, but yet still able to feel pain. Prior to trial, a settlement was obtained which included funds which will cover the cost of Jairo’s round-the-clock needs and medical care for the remainder of his life.
$11.7 Million+ Confidential Settlement
The constraints of confidentiality prevent us from discussing the details of our representation in this precedent-setting case. The settlement is believed to be the largest of its kind in Florida history for this type of case. Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith is not afraid to take on the powerful, nor are we afraid to “think outside of the box.” We utilize a team approach that allows us to always place our client’s interests first.
Multi-million dollar confidential settlement
Our clients suffered one of the worst losses imaginable – the death of their precious 11-year-old daughter. Confidentiality agreements prevent us from providing the details of this record-setting settlement. Nevertheless, we can say that after over 2 years of hard fought litigation — the file occupied dozens and dozens of boxes — and depositions of expert witnesses all across the country, the defendants agreed to our demands on the eve of trial. Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith has both the legal ability and the financial wherewithal to go toe-to-toe with the largest product manufacturers and insurance companies in the world. It is gratifying that our efforts helped bring closure to the parents of an innocent child whom we will never, ever forget.
Confidential Settlement – Paralysis
The confines of a strict confidentiality provision prohibit us from providing any details of this tragic accident. Suffice it to say, driving impaired can have devastating, lifelong consequences. Our young client will be in a wheelchair for the remainder of his life because of the negligence of another. We are honored to know him and proud we were able to help him achieve justice.
Confidential Settlement – Pedestrian Death
On the date of the crash, Ms. M was walking to church as she had daily for the past ten years. When she was not in services, she was volunteering at the church. She was the lifeblood of her church, as well as her family. As she walked safely along the sidewalk, she passed a large, construction vehicle that had parked halfway on the sidewalk and halfway on the street. As she passed the truck, the truck driver began to drive forward, running her over and literally crushing her body. She died hours later with her children by her bedside. Her lineage left behind included her eight children. After the family retained Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith, we immediately secured all of the evidence and performed a reconstruction of the accident, thereby nullifying the corporation’s attempt to place blame on Ms. M. Shortly thereafter, we were able to obtain a large, confidential settlement which provided this family with a sense of justice, as well as a sense of closure.
$6.3 Million Verdict – Motorcycle Wreck
Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith is a boutique law firm that utilizes a team approach to its cases. We are small enough to provide the personal touch, yet large enough, and with sufficient resources, to effectively represent clients in cases involving catastrophic injury or death. In this case, Josh, age 23, was wrongfully killed when an elderly driver turned directly in front of his motorcycle. The jury found the elderly driver completely at fault for causing the wreck and awarded $6.3 million in damages. We were successful in obtaining justice for Josh’s parents by utilizing a team approrach that involved many of the firm’s lawyers. Our lawyers have considerable jury trial experience and do not hesitate to use that experience, when needed, to obtain justice for our clients.
$6 Million – Uninsured Motorist/Insurance Bad Faith
Tiffany is a young woman who was involved in a terrible car wreck. The wreck left her a paraplegic. Tiffany lived with her grandparents, and they had a total of $4.5 million of uninsured motorist coverage. Those limits should have been paid immediately. When they were not, Tiffany’s grandparents contacted the family’s lawyer, who filed a lawsuit against the uninsured motorist insurance carrier. The insurance company would not even concede the amount of available insurance – much less pay Tiffany. We worked with the family lawyer to achieve justice for Tiffany in a hard fought Federal lawsuit in Ft. Myers. We were successful in obtaining a crucial ruling from the Federal Judge establishing conclusively that the available coverage was, in fact, $4.5 million. Shortly after this ruling, the insurance company tried to settle the claim for $4.5 million. Given the insurance company’s delay in meeting its obligations, we were successful in obtaining a total settlement for Tiffany of $6 million. Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith encourages our clients to carry ample uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage because of the large number of drivers in Florida who either have no liability insurance or inadequate coverage.
$5.33 Million – Loss of Son
Joey Bartolucci was the kind of son any mother would be proud of. A graduate of the University of Florida – and a huge Gator fan – Joey was murdered by a convicted felon. Both Joey’s Mother and his sister were hurting and needed to know everything possible would be done to avenge Joey’s death. While the felon confessed to second-degree murder in his State criminal case, was there anything that could be done in the civil courts? After all, the felon’s multi-million dollar assets had been seized by the Federal government in connection with related charges. Regardless, the Firm simply refused to allow this injustice to stand and immediately filed a lawsuit against the felon. After an emotional trial, the jury awarded Gina over $5.33 million – to the penny what was requested. Thereafter, a petition was filed with the Federal government seeking remission of the felon’s assets to compensate Gina for her loss.
Confidential Settlement – Nursing Home Death
Often, the survivors of loved ones retain our services not only to seek vindication for the negligence of others but also to determine the true cause of their loved one’s demise. The son and daughter of Mrs. Smith are a perfect example. After Mrs. Smith fainted at her home, she was transferred to St. Mary’s Hospital and discharged to an area nursing home where she died nine days later. An autopsy was performed and the medical examiner determined Mrs. Smith died of natural causes. Fortunately, a private medical examiner was retained for litigation purposes. After the expert performed a detailed autopsy, he determined the true cause of death – skull fracture. After conferencing with the expert, and in conjunction with his records review, we determined that Mrs. Smith fell in her home and struck her head, thereby resulting in a skull fracture. The skull fracture went undiagnosed in the nursing home. During her stay at the nursing home, Mrs. Smith complained of worsening, excruciating headaches. Despite the complaints of the resident and her children, the nursing home did nothing. We determined that the complaints were due to swelling of the brain which destroyed tissue and was the sole cause of death. Furthermore, if the condition was timely recognized, life-saving medication could have been used. Shortly thereafter, a significant, confidential settlement was obtained.
$4.5 Million Settlement – Trucking Accident
It is our client’s desire that the specific details of this personal injury case remain private. We are proud of our efforts in this complex and hard-fought lawsuit, as they helped bring justice to a very deserving client.
Confidential Settlement – Nursing Home and Assisted Living Facility (ALF)
We are proud that our clients find us through referrals based upon our reputation in the community. Ms. B was no exception, contacting us after reading in the newspaper about a successful nursing home verdict we obtained. When we met Ms. B, she was recovering from a stroke that left her unable to walk and bed bound. Initially, she was admitted to a nursing home where she sustained a significant bedsore. Her insurance plan required her to be transferred to an ALF. After the first four ALFs refused to admit Ms. B, a fifth ALF, unfortunately, chose to admit her. As an ALF, it did not offer skilled nursing care and did not have sufficient staff to care for Ms. B’s wound – a prerequisite to a proper admission. Her wound quickly declined and became infected with MRSA. After meeting with the family, we assisted with getting Ms. B transferred to an area wound care hospital and filed suit against the nursing home and the ALF. Ms. B was forced to undergo multiple surgical procedures, an extensive hospitalization, and the use of a wound vac. Ultimately, we were thrilled to learn her wound fully healed. In addition, we were able to obtain a significant settlement from both the nursing home as well as the ALF. No aspect of our job gives us greater satisfaction than obtaining justice for our clients while providing life-changing advice.
$3.6 Million – Insurance Bad Faith/Personal Injury
Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith has been honored to co-counsel cases involving insurance bad faith issues with lawyers throughout Florida. Several of our lawyers and staff worked for insurance companies before joining the Firm. Accordingly, we have a unique insight into how insurance companies work. In this case, we were pleased to handle the bad faith aspects of a case that resulted in a pre-trial settlement that was 144 times the $25,000 policy limits. Insurance bad faith cases are complex and hard fought. We have the knowledge and experience to hold insurance companies accountable when they violate Florida law and act in bad faith.
Denial of Coverage Results in Settlement Over 250 Times Policy Limits
In Florida, insurance companies are governed by a set of rules they must obey. When they arrogantly ignore these rules and operate in a bad faith fashion, there are consequences. Jack’s insurance company wrongly decided that he had no coverage for the claim made against him. By not providing him the defense and coverage he was entitled to, we were successful in forcing the insurance company to satisfy the entire judgment entered against Jack — even though it was over 250 times the coverage amount. Our lawyers have had decades of experience defending insurance companies. We know both the rules and the tricks insurance companies sometimes use to try to break them. We handle cases throughout Florida when insurance companies break the rules and operate in bad faith.
$3.25 Million – Insurance Bad Faith/Motorcycle Wreck
Henry’s wife needed help. Her husband was in a coma at St. Mary’s Hospital as the result of a terrible motorcycle accident. She retained an lawyer who, after doing some research, discovered there was only minimal insurance available from the at-fault driver. The lawyer told Henry’s wife she did not need to incur the expense of retaining an lawyer since the $10,000 in coverage should immediately be paid by the at-fault driver’s insurance company. When Henry came out of the coma, his wife began to wonder when the family would receive the $10,000 in coverage. She again contacted the lawyer who, disgusted by the insurance company’s failure to settle, immediately filed a lawsuit against the negligent driver. The lawyer then contacted us to pursue an insurance bad faith claim against the driver’s insurance company. We were successful in convincing the insurance company to mediate the entire dispute before Henry’s injury claim went to trial. The result? A settlement of 325 times the $10,000 policy limits. Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith is available for consultation throughout the State of Florida on insurance bad faith matters.
Confidential Settlement – Medical Malpractice
Jennifer was a single mother of a baby girl when, at the age of 25, she became very sick. She went into her local walk-in clinic with a 103.6 degree fever, blood pressure of only 80/60, poor appetite, bowel changes, excessive thirst, indigestion, nausea, vomiting, weakness, numbness all over her body, and memory loss. Based solely upon her subjective symptoms, she was prescribed antibiotics and sent on her way. The treating physician failed to document the chart, prepare an assessment, or prepare a plan of care. More importantly, despite the fact that she had a fever of almost 104 degrees for three days, she was discharged home instead of to an emergency room. Tragically, she died twelve hours later leaving her baby daughter behind. Although it is physically impossible to undo the hands of time, the firm was able to secure a significant recovery which will take care of Jennifer’s baby into adulthood.
Confidential Settlement – Construction Site Accident
When John Doe arrived at the new building construction site, he could never have imagined that in the following minutes the building, and subsequently his life, would begin to crumble around him. Due to one error after another by the general contractor and its subcontractors, the building literally collapsed underneath him while Mr. Doe was performing drywall work. The multiple defendants and the insurance companies worked together to fight Mr. Doe and his lawyer for years. When Mr. Doe was on the verge of giving up hope, Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith took over the case. Within months, the defendants’ united front crumbled like the building’s floor and a confidential settlement was reached which will provide young Mr. Doe with financial security for the remainder of his life.
$2.1 Million – Policy Limits Recovery/Motor Vehicle Accident
When Hubert’s family came to Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith, they felt as though their life was falling apart. Just days earlier, Hubert was involved in a horrific motor vehicle crash which broke his neck and left him paralyzed. The hospital was already threatening to discharge him and they did not have insurance to pay for the cost of his post-discharge care, nevertheless rehabilitation. Moreover, the insurance company for the other driver had already hand delivered a check for $100,000.00 and claimed that was the only available insurance coverage. Unfortunately for Hubert’s family, this policy was far less than his outstanding medical bills. After accepting representation, we immediately declined the policy limits and filed suit against the other driver. Thereafter, we proved that the driver was in the course and scope of his employment, entitling Hubert to his employer’s coverage as well, resulting in a 2.1 million dollar policy limits recovery. During the course of the litigation, we were able to arrange for Hubert to be admitted to an in-patient, spinal rehabilitation facility. After several months of rigorous therapy, Hubert regained his ability to walk. It is incredibly gratifying that our efforts assisted not only with our client’s financial recovery, but also with recovering his health.
$2 Million – Policy Limits Settlement/Construction Site Accident
Veny was living the American dream. A white collar worker in his native country, he readily accepted a blue collar job here until he could find something more suitable. On the day of his untimely death, he was simply following orders. His boss told him to assist a driver unloading date palm trees. Tragically, the trees had shifted in transit, but the driver released the straps holding them before walking around the truck to see if it was safe to do so. The trees suddenly and unexpectedly rolled off the truck, crushing Veny’s skull. The insurance company for the trucking company refused to settle with Veny’s family lawyer, who contacted our firm to assist him. We retained an expert to quantify the family’s economic loss. A compelling video was also presented to the insurance company to demonstrate the devastating suffering Veny’s wife had suffered and would suffer for the rest of her life. The insurance company promptly offered the $2 million policy limits after seeing our presentation. Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith is here to help those victimized by the wrongful death of a loved one.
Confidential Settlement – Nursing Home
Reverend Smith was a family man and the pillar of his community. Unfortunately, in his later years he developed severe dementia and his wife was forced to admit him to a nursing home. Approximately eight (8) weeks after admission, his wife arrived at the facility to find him covered in ants. According to the nursing home records, the Reverend suffered at least eighty (80) ant bites. His eye was swollen and his foot was bleeding. He was rushed to the hospital and subsequently discharged to an area rehabilitation facility. The admitting staff at the facility discovered that the Reverend had a large, stage four decubitus ulcer of the left heel and a stage two ulcer of the right heel. The family turned to Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith for help. We initiated the statutory pursuit process and, in response, the defendant nursing home claimed that the Reverend had the ulcers when he initially arrived at the home. After vigorous discovery, we were able to prove through the use of the Reverend’s hospital and physicians’ records that his skin was intact at the time of the nursing home admission. The case settled for a very significant confidential settlement. Bringing abusive nursing homes to justice is not just our job — it’s a passion!
$2 Million – Policy Limits Recovery / Wrongful Death – Trucking Accident
Loss of a loved one is devastating. This is especially so when the loss occurs under violent and unjust circumstances. At Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith we have significant experience in handling wrongful death cases and work hard to represent our clients in a sensitive, caring fashion. In this case, following a tragic loss in a trucking accident, we moved quickly to employ investigators and engineers so that crucial evidence would not be destroyed or tampered with. Our prompt examination of the truck’s “black box” proved critical. The data confirmed what we suspected – the trucker had been speeding and did not even slow down for a red light. When confronted with this objective evidence, the insurance company was forced to pay the available policy limits. Wrongful death cases require experience and resources. Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith has both.
$1.8 Million – Road Rage Trial
Road rage can be deadly. It was here. Our client was the passenger in a Chrysler Sebring that became involved in a road rage incident on I95 with the defendant’s vehicle. The facts of the accident were hotly disputed, but it was undisputed the two vehicles never came into contact. Furthermore, FHP placed all of the fault for this rollover accident on the uninsured driver of the Sebring, as the defendant driver claimed the Sebring driver threw something at his vehicle and, while in the process of doing so, simply lost control. Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith retained an experienced accident reconstruction expert who was able to prove the physical evidence did not support the defendant driver’s version of the events. Instead, it appeared both drivers were to blame. This analysis, along with testimony obtained during cross-examination of the defendant driver, led the jury to place 60% of the fault on the defendant driver and 40% on the driver of the Sebring. After the trial establishing fault on the defendant driver, the case settled before a jury trial on damages. There is an expression, “It takes two to tango.” This tragedy could have easily been avoided if either driver would have simply calmed down and disengaged from the incident.
$1.8 Million – Wrongful Death
At Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith we work hard for our clients. Here, our clients, the loving parents of a 32 year-old son, did not suffer any economic loss when their son died. The emotional loss of losing one of their children was tremendous, though. We wanted to help them achieve a sense of justice. A confidentiality agreement prevents us from sharing the details of this hard fought, precedent-setting case. Nevertheless, we can say that our hard work on behalf of our clients was truly a labor of love.
Confidential Settlement – Assisted Living Facility Death
Ms. X was an 88-year-old battling Alzheimer’s disease. When her family was no longer able to provide round the clock care, she was admitted to what they thought was the best assisted living facility (ALF) the family could afford. The ALF assured the family that their mother would be safe in the secure, Alzheimer’s wing of the facility. Unfortunately, the facility’s representations were false. Shortly after admission, the resident gained access to an elevator, left the facility and fell. During the fall, she sustained a broken hip necessitating surgery which ultimately caused her death. In addition to the Firm obtaining a significant settlement for the family, the ALF has implemented new procedures so no other resident is able to fall into harm’s way. The settlement provided us with great satisfaction as we not only obtained justice for this deserving family, we protected future residents as well from suffering a similar fate.
$1.55 Million – Texting Accident
Sadly, encountering the texting driver has become virtually a daily occurrence. In this case, the other driver was so engrossed with her text that she blew through a red light and slammed into the side of our client’s car. An independent witness confirmed the defendant driver was texting. Indeed, the witness stated the other driver almost hit her before running the light and hitting our client. The resulting collision spun our client’s vehicle into the far corner of the intersection. The photographs were dramatic. Even more dramatic was the manner in which our client’s injuries impacted his ability to work in his business. We retained a certified public accountant to do a forensic analysis of our client’s business and assist us in determining his loss. After presenting the accountant’s findings, along with a moving settlement documentary we had prepared, the insurance company settled the case.
$1.275 Million – Teen Driver
Many teens think they are invincible – bulletproof. We see them weaving in and out of traffic on the Interstate or Turnpike and fear for the worst. Here, a reckless teenage driver on I95 cut off our lovely client and caused a rollover accident that could have easily been deadly. Thankfully, our client was wearing her seat belt and her vehicle was equipped with the latest air bags. Nevertheless, the significant trauma of the crash left our client with permanent pain and a lifelong limp. Those of us with teens need to emphasize to them the horrific consequences that can occur behind the wheel. While the teen in this case hopefully learned her lesson, the damage she caused can never be erased.
$1.25 Million – Hit and Run Accident
Our client was stopped for a red light when he was slammed into by an F350 truck that fled the scene. Thankfully, Good Samaritans were able to get a description, and the fleeing driver was ultimately located by law enforcement. Unsurprisingly, the outlaw driver had inadequate insurance coverage but, fortunately, our client had purchased uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage to protect him from exactly this sort of occurrence. We retained a forensic accountant to quantify our client’s business loss as a result of his injuries, and we were able to resolve the case without the need of filing a lawsuit. This case is yet another example of the importance of adequate uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. It protects you and your family when the other driver either has no liability insurance or, like here, has inadequate insurance coverage.
Confidential Settlement – Nursing Home Settlement
MB suffered from end-stage senile dementia. She was no longer capable of caring for herself and required assistance with all activities of daily living. As her children had to work to pay their bills, they could not care for their mother 24/7. As a result, she was admitted to a local nursing home. In addition, they also paid for a private duty nurse to provide extra care to their mother during the day. On the date of the incident, two hours after the private duty nurse had left, MB was found in her wheelchair screaming from pain. She was transferred to the hospital, diagnosed with a hip fracture, and was forced to undergo hip replacement surgery which ultimately led to her death. The surgeon confirmed that the fracture was caused by significant trauma and she certainly was not physically capable of getting herself back into her wheelchair, following the fall, without assistance. Faced with this clear evidence, the nursing home agreed to resolve the case. Equally important, however, they performed a full-blown internal investigation to prevent such incidents from occurring in the future.
$1.25 Million – Intersectional Accident
Many people are surprised to learn that Section 316.185, Florida Statutes, defines intersections as “special hazards” and requires all drivers to slow down at intersections. Indeed, this statute states that “the fact that the speed of a vehicle is lower than the prescribed limits shall not relieve the driver from the duty to decrease speed when approaching and crossing an intersection.” In this case, an independent witness confirmed the driver who slammed into our client did not slow down but actually sped through the intersection, ignoring the red light. The resulting impact was so hard our client required spinal surgery and surgery for diplopia (double vision). We were honored to help this deserving client achieve justice against the reckless driver who injured him.
$1.2 Million – Golf Cart Accident
Golf carts seem safe. After all, they do not go nearly as fast as cars and are largely made of fiberglass. They just do not seem dangerous. In fact, golf carts can cause devastating injuries. In Florida, they are classified as “dangerous instrumentalities,” subjecting the golf cart owner to liability for the operator’s negligence. We have handled many golf cart accidents through the years and know firsthand how dangerous they can be. This case is typical. The operator of the golf cart mistakenly hit the accelerator and ended up running over her 85-year-old friend’s lower leg. Our client, formerly an avid golfer, was standing in the middle of the fairway when she was struck. The resulting injury required multiple surgical procedures. Fortunately, we were able to achieve a prompt settlement against the owner of the golf cart. Special care should be taken when operating golf carts, and young children should never be allowed to operate them. Golf carts are truly “a wolf in sheep’s clothing.”
$1.1 Million – Trucking Accident
Mitchell Corzine was everything good a son could possibly be in the eyes of his loving parents. On the way home from school one evening, his life tragically ended. He was a front seat passenger in a Kia driven by his close friend. As they entered the on-ramp to the interstate, the small car struck the rear of a large, tractor-trailer. The truck had parked illegally and the rear of the truck extended several feet into the roadway. All it took was the driver of the Kia to look down for a quick second, and the vehicle struck the rear of the truck, instantly ending Mitchell’s life. The insurer for the trucking company initially denied liability and contended that the driver of the Kia was the sole cause of the collision. We were able to obtain the recorded statement of the truck driver, taken by FHP during a criminal investigation, wherein the truck driver admitted that the crash was his fault. Faced with this strong evidence, coupled with the firm’s history of large verdicts in similar cases, the carrier quickly tendered its policy limits.
We have certainly had other $1 million+ results for our clients. Our intent is not to list them all here. This is just a small sample of the cases we have handled. Furthermore, we know that many deserving clients do not have “million dollar” cases, and we do not limit our practice to only “million dollar” cases. We have handled thousands of cases, of all sizes, over the years. We welcome the opportunity to discuss your case with you — regardless of its size. Every case we accept is important to us.