Case Results continued
$1,775,000 Verdict – Nursing Home Death
George Dahmer had a psychotic episode related to his end stage senile dementia. George was hospitalized and, at the time of discharge, the physicians determined that George needed to be placed in a nursing home. As a result, they had him admitted to Lake Worth Manor, an area nursing home. At the time, George and his beloved wife, Patricia, had been married for just shy of 50 years. Shortly after admission, Patricia began to complain to the staff regarding the poor care her husband received. Her complaints, however, fell upon deaf ears. Sixty-three days after admission, George was discharged almost 30 pounds lighter, dehydrated, and with pressure sores to both of his heels as well as his buttocks. The wounds became infected, leading to bronchial pneumonia and causing his death. The family was devastated. George spent the majority of his adult life working as a professional wrestler, known as Chief White Owl. He was larger than life to both his family as well as his friends. The family consulted with a local lawyer who referred them to Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith. The firm brought the case to trial, and the jury found that the nursing home was negligent and violated George’s resident’s rights. The jury entered a verdict in the amount of $1,775,000.00, thereby dignifying the loss and providing the family with a sense of justice. The family is now attempting to effectuate changes in the nursing home laws to better protect the elderly. It was a pleasure helping the family of Chief White Owl win his final match. The family is now attempting to effectuate changes in the nursing home laws to better protect the elderly. To assist them in their efforts, please go to their websitewww.chiefwhiteowlwon.com and sign their petition.
Confidential Settlement – Insurance Bad faith and Denial of Coverage
All Sam wanted was the protection he paid his insurance company to provide. He had purchased $300,000 of coverage on the vehicle a co-worker was driving. When the co-worker was injured in a single car accident, she sued Sam. Instead of defending Sam, the insurance company wrongfully denied coverage and closed its file. Abandoned, Sam did the best he could to defend himself, but he was ultimately hit with a large judgment. We sued the company and traveled to its headquarters to confront the corporate representative. Shortly after that deposition the insurance company settled for a large, confidential sum. Sadly, some insurance companies will both bend and break the rules – if given a chance. Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith holds insurance companies accountable when they shirk their responsibilities.
Medical Malpractice – Confidential Recovery
When 80 year old Dorothy was admitted to the hospital for a cardiac procedure she was nervous. To her relief, the cardiac procedure was successful. Unfortunately, during her hospitalization, a nurse negligently provided Dorothy with an improper dose of calcium gluconate. The infusion of the improper dosage of calcium gluconate caused Dorothy to suffer full thickness necrosis of her arm. This forced Dorothy to undergo numerous surgeries and wound revisions. Tragically, it left Dorothy with limited use of her arm. As a result, she is reliant upon her husband for assistance with many of the most basic activities of daily living. After several law firms turned down the case, Dorothy retained the lawyers at Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith, PLLC. The firm was able to obtain the hospital’s insurance policy limits.
$1.375 Million – Trucking Accident
Melanie was a 28-year old hard-working mother of 2 young children who was involved in a serious collision with a tractor trailer that had lost control. The driver of the tractor trailer was driving at an excessive rate of speed and not paying attention to the road. Melanie sustained a back injury from the collision and ultimately came to require a spinal fusion. Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith was able to obtain the full $1 million policy limits from the insurer of the tractor trailer, as well as an additional $375,000 from Melanie’s uninsured/underinsured (UM/UIM) motorist coverage. It is very important to maintain UM/UIM insurance coverage. This insurance protects you in case you are involved in an accident with someone who does not maintain sufficient insurance to fully compensate you for your injuries and damages sustained. Although the tractor trailer did maintain $1 million in liability coverage, it was not enough to fully compensate Melanie for the extensive damages she sustained. The foresight of Melanie maintaining sufficient UM/UIM coverage helped our Firm obtain an additional $375,000 from her insurance company, for a total settlement of $1,375,000.
Confidential Settlement: In Excess of $1.35 Million – Motor Vehicle Accident
Mickey Smith concluded a hard-fought case arising from a motor vehicle accident. The parties’ desire for confidentiality prevents us from providing the details of this case, but we are proud of our efforts. As Mickey put it, “This was a team effort all the way, involving several of our lawyers and staff. Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith has both the skill and financial resources to take on any adversary – and prevail.”
$1.3 Million – Intersectional Car Accident
It started off as a routine day. Tom was going through an intersection near his home like he had safely done hundreds of times before. This time, though, an elderly driver ran the traffic light and caused a terrible collision. Sounds simple, right? Unfortunately, the police concluded that the wreck was Tom’s fault, based on the statement of the only independent witness to the accident. She claimed that Tom ran a red light. Fortunately, Tom’s daughter was referred to us by an existing client shortly after the collision occurred. While Tom and his daughter concentrated on obtaining the best medical care possible, we conducted an exhaustive investigation. For example, an engineer was employed to analyze the scene, the vehicles, and the light sequencing information. We used our in-house investigator to establish that the “witness” could not even see the traffic light from where she was standing at the time of the crash. We then used our many years of experience handling accident cases, along with our familiarity with the intricacies of insurance law, to obtain a settlement for the entire insurance policy limits of $1,300,000. This case illustrates the importance of conducting a thorough investigation immediately after a collision.
$1.3 Million – Insurance Bad Faith/Car Accident
Shawn caused a car accident. He did not mean to; it was an accident. Shawn had purchased $10,000 in insurance coverage to protect him from such mistakes. Unfortunately, his insurance company failed to settle the claim made against him. We litigated Shawn’s insurance bad faith case in Lee County. After deposing the insurance adjuster for two days, we were able to conclusively establish that the entire claim did not settle because the adjuster was trying to save $200 on the company’s property damage payment. Shortly before trial the case settled for $1,300,000, or 130 times the policy limits. Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith has the experience and resources to hold insurance companies that act in bad faith accountable.
$1.25 Million – Car Accident
Our client was struck by a slow moving car in a parking lot. After the accident, his back hurt and his knee hurt. It seemed like a simple case — at least the first lawyer thought so. The case was handled in the “standard” fashion by this lawyer, and the lawyer tried to obtain a quick settlement. When the insurance company made a meager, “standard” offer that was unsatisfactory to the client, he was referred to us by one of his friends. Our firm knows, from having handled literally thousands of motor vehicle accident cases through the years, that there is no such thing as a case that is either simple or standard. Each case is different, and law firms that handle motor vehicle accident cases in a “cookie cutter” fashion frequently get “cookie cutter” results — uniform, but uniformly poor. At Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith we take the time to properly investigate and evaluate all aspects of our cases. Our clients deserve nothing less. In this case, our efforts allowed this deserving client to obtain a full measure of justice for his injuries.
$1.25 Million – Boating Accident / Wrongful Death
Our 79 year-old client lost the love of his life, his wife, in a tragic boating accident. The insurance company took the position that the damages were relatively minimal, given the age of the decedent. We knew that suffering the loss of a loved one is the ultimate injury – at any age. We fought hard to show, through photographs and testimony of family members, that the case had substantial value. After seeing our presentation and our commitment to the case, the insurance company reconsidered its position and a fair settlement was reached. At Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith we work very hard to obtain justice for our clients. We would not have it any other way.
$1.15 Million – Personal Injury Settlement
The insurance carrier requested that we keep all details of Kelly’s settlement confidential. We will honor their request.
$1.12 Million – Car Accident
Nick, a 37 year-old carpenter, was involved in a roll-over collision while traveling through Tennessee, injuring his neck and his knees in the crash. He ultimately required a cervical fusion and arthroscopic knee surgery. Nick did not initially retain counsel. Shortly after the one year anniversary of the accident, he sought to recover the $10,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist policy limits available under his own policy of insurance. Shockingly, the carrier informed him that the time period he had to file his claim under Tennessee law had expired. Five different law firms turned down the case and informed him that he had no case. Just when he was about to give up hope, a good friend and former client of the firm referred him to Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith. We immediately informed him that Florida, not Tennessee, law applied. We filed a statutory notice with the Department of Insurance, waited for the requisite time period to expire, then filed suit against the insurance carrier. After we convinced the carrier of their wrongdoing and demonstrated our intent to proceed to trial, the carrier agreed to proceed to mediation where the case was settled for more than 100 times the policy limits. We are proud we were able to maximize Nick’s recovery.
$1 Million – Drunk Driving Crash
In all the years of representing hard working individuals, Jim’s work ethic had to be towards the top of the list. For years prior to the crash, Jim would drive from his home in Boynton Beach to Naples, work a full day performing hard construction labor, then drive home. At the time of the crash, he had been a construction worker for 30 years. Unbeknownst to him, when he awoke on October 31, 2008, his career would end a few hours later. At approximately 4:30am, he was making his daily cross-state commute in his 1991 Buick. As Jim’s day was just beginning, Mr. P’s day was just ending after a night of heavy drinking. Mr. P, while traveling at a high rate of speed well in excess of the speed limit in his full size Mercedes, slammed into the rear of Jim’s much smaller Buick. Mr. P was stumbling at the scene, slurring his words, and even admitted to consuming shots of vodka. Although he was arrested for D.U.I., unfortunately, he got off on a technicality. As a result, Jim’s civil case was his only shot at justice. Within weeks of the crash, Jim was fired from his job and told by his boss that it was due to the economy. Jim had sustained injuries in the crash which necessitated neck and back surgery. As a result, he was unable to return to his profession as a heavy laborer. This proud breadwinner was no longer able to provide for his wife and daughter. The insurance carrier only made a nominal offer as they contended that his injuries were pre-existing, and that he was not working due to the economy. During the course of extensive litigation, we were able to prove that, but for the crash, Jim would still be working full time. Shortly after the Court granted our motion to proceed with a claim for punitive damages, the $1 million policy was tendered.
$1 Million+ Settlement – Uninsured / Underinsured Motorist Coverage Dispute
John was a business owner who often used his personal motorcycle for business networking within the construction industry. While using his motorcycle for job related purposes, John was involved in a serious motorcycle crash. John and his wife believed they had $1 million dollars in uninsured / underinsured motorist coverage for the household and business vehicles. They initially consulted with another law firm who informed them they were entitled to only $400,000 in coverage for the crash. Unsatisfied, they were referred to Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith, and we were able to obtain a settlement in excess of $1 million dollars. Our lawyers are thorough, innovative, have significant experience analyzing issues of insurance coverage and bad faith, and will aggressively seek to get our clients the full compensation they are entitled to.
$1 Million – Truck Accident/Policy Limits Settlement
Dwayne and Elnora did not want a lawsuit. They simply wanted the lives they had before the tractor trailer went into their lane and hit their car, even though they knew this was an impossible wish. The insurance company initially fought the case tooth and nail, even claiming that Dwayne caused the accident by hitting the truck. Furthermore, they argued, the damage to the car was minor and the initial medical care wasn’t extensive. Our thorough investigation confirmed that Dwayne and Elnora were in no way “faking” and deserved justice. After all, they were just normal folks who had been victimized by a careless truck driver. We pursued the case aggressively and traveled to the State of Maine to vigorously confront the truck driver in a videotape deposition. After that deposition — which exposed the truth of what actually happened in the wreck — we dictated to the insurance company that they would either meet our demand for the policy limits or else we would have a jury decide what was fair. The insurance company knew we were serious in our passion for Dwayne and Lenora’s case, and they knew our ability in the courtroom. Every penny of insurance coverage was promptly paid.
$1 Million – Personal Injury/Policy Limits Settlement
Gene was the proud owner of a commercial landscaping company. On February 12, 2004, he arrived at a job site in Boca Raton to pay a supplier who was delivering mulch. The supplier’s employee had stacked large bags of mulch on the forklift and proceeded to drive forward. Gene walked toward the employee to pay him for the mulch. Unfortunately, the mulch blocked the employee’s field of vision and he ran over Gene’s foot with the forklift. During the fall, Gene’s head struck the pavement. Gene suffered mild brain damage involving his cognitive abilities, as well as a loss of hearing and fractured teeth. We performed an extensive investigation. It proved that the employee’s actions on the date of the accident violated several OSHA standards for which he was cited. In the face of clear liability and our relentless push to bring the matter to a verdict, the insurance carrier tendered its $1,000,000 insurance policy.
$1 Million – Minimal impact case
On May 12, 2004, C.W. had no idea when she left her home to run a simple errand that her life would forever change. For years she had struggled with low back pain aggravated by her job as a nursing assistant, but she was able to continue working and live with the pain. On the day of the wreck, she stopped for a red light and was hit from behind. Although there was minimal damage to her vehicle, her back pain instantly increased. Over the next twelve months, she tried therapy, medications, and ultimately surgery to alleviate the pain. When it was clear the insurance company was going to stonewall Claudette, her lawyers referred the case to our firm because of our trial experience in personal injury matters. The Firm filed a lawsuit and requested a trial date. On the eve of trial, the insurance company tendered their $1,000,000 policy limits. The lawyers at Lesser, Lesser, Landy, and Smith are proud to fight for those who cannot fight for themselves.
$1 Million – Motor Vehicle Accident
Benjamin, a 53 year-old dry cleaner, was involved in a collision on I-95. As a result of the accident, he suffered a neck injury that required surgery, and he was forced to sell his business. Benjamin retained counsel who tried to force him to accept the insurance company’s offer of $25,000. Benjamin refused, fired his lawyer, and retained Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith. After accepting the case, we immediately retained an economist to properly evaluate the wage loss claim. The insurance company initially refused to apportion any significant settlement money toward the wage loss claim as Benjamin’s business was only modestly profitable. Through extensive discovery, we were able to demonstrate that due to population growth in the western end of the county, Benjamin’s potential customer base grew by leaps and bounds in the years after he sold the business. During the deposition of the purchaser of the business, we confirmed our client’s suspicions. We learned the profitability of the business grew more than four times over the few years after Benjamin was forced to sell it. We immediately gave a thirty day time limit demand and vigorous litigation ensued. Two hours before the demand was set to expire, the case settled for our client’s request of $1,000,000.
$1 Million – Construction Accident/Policy Limits Settlement
When an insurance company knows that a law firm is well versed in insurance bad faith law, it knows that it will have to play by the rules. We were retained by lawyers who had been litigating a construction accident case for several years. The insurance company refused to make a reasonable offer, much less pay the $1,000,000 policy limits. We made a presentation to the insurance company that reminded them of their good faith obligations and showed them the consequences if they acted in bad faith. The policy limits were promptly paid.
Confidential Settlement – Nursing Home
Ms. A was beloved by her family and friends. Later in life, she developed Alzheimer’s which necessitated that she be placed in a full time care facility. While at the facility, a therapist pushing another resident in his wheelchair ran over Ms. A’s foot. Ms. A suffered from diabetic neuropathy. Accordingly, she had great difficulty with the wound and infection set in. She ultimately underwent a below the knee amputation. The family was initially unable to find counsel to pursue the claim as the facility was uninsured and, due to Ms. A’s prior medical condition, the family was told the case was too difficult. We pursued the claim, despite the facility’s continual threats to file bankruptcy. At the conclusion of the case, we were able to obtain the recovery directly from the facility. Our tenacious refusal to quit paid off.
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.