Motorcycle v. Auto: $740,432 Arbitration Award
Our client, Yoav T., a 40 year old line cook at Alta Bates Hospital, was driving his motorcycle on Telegraph Avenue in Oakland when he struck a car which pulled out in front of him from a side street. After having two operations to repair his knee and shoulder, Yoav was no longer able to perform his job as a cook, so he went back to college to retrain himself to a new occupation. The theme we presented to the arbitrator was that Yoav’s inability to be a cook any longer, after years of working in the restaurant industry, was not simply the loss of a job but the loss of his dream of being a cook/chef. Since the case could not resolve informally, partner Dale Minami and associate Eunice Yang began litigation but proposed binding arbitration, since that forum offered advantages to Yoav. The case was tried by Minami Tamaki Partner B. Mark Fong and Associate Eunice Yang. The arbitrator awarded total damages to Yoav and his wife (who sued for loss of consortium) of $740,432.75. $375,000 of this award was for Yoav’s pain and suffering.
Underinsured Motor Vehicle Accident: $2.65 Million Recovery
In 1993, our client was severely injured in an automobile crash in which a delivery messenger ran a red light and crushed her car. The client had been in a coma for over a month. The driver only had a $15,000 insurance policy and his employer had no insurance. Both defendants disappeared and the insurance company later declared insolvency. Outraged by the defendants’ and insurance company’s irresponsibility, Dale Minami filed a lawsuit and obtained a default judgment of over $2.4 million, which was uncollectible at the time since there appeared to be no insurance and no assets of the defendants. We then filed the judgment in Florida where the insolvent insurance company purportedly conducted business. In 2004, Dale Minami was contacted by the Department of Insurance and was able to negotiate a $2.65 Million recovery for the client.
Rental car driver negligence and Malpractice – $3.1 Million Recovery
We represented a 51-year old Home Care Provider, who was driving in the course and scope of his employment as a caregiver in San Francisco. Our client was struck by a Hummer rented from the Hertz Corporation and driven by a foreign tourist making an illegal turn on a red light. He was taken the emergency department of the local hospital by ambulance but at the emergency department, Vernon’s treating physicians’ inadvertently injured his spinal cord rendering him a partial quadriplegic. Senior Counsel Mark Fong, Partner Dale Minami and Associate Eunice Yang, handled both the auto accident claim which settled for Hertz’ policy limits of $1 million and later settled the claim against the physicians and the hospital for $2.1 million. Our client faced a number of challenges in settling the medical malpractice case. First, noneconomic damages were capped at $250,000 due to MICRA. His past and future wage loss claim was $252,157. Defendants argued plaintiff’s claim for future medical expenses was unrecoverable as a matter of law, as the compensation carrier had agreed to provide John with lifetime medical care and defendants were entitled to introduce this fact to the jury. The PI team argued, however, through Plaintiff’s experts in healthcare financial administration, life care planning and workers compensation utilization review, that workers compensation is unlikely to pay for much of the treatment he will need over the next 30 years, leaving him exposed at the time when he will most need care. The team settled the medical malpractice case for $2.1 million, recovering his entire wage and the terms of the settlement provides Vernon with the lifetime care that he needs
Motor Vehicle Collision – Negligent Hiring-Drunk Driving: $1,100,000 Recovery
Our client was injured in a head-on collision with a drunk driver that resulted in fractures to both of the client’s legs, a fractured wrist and a fractured ankle that left him permanently disabled. During the course of our investigation Seth Rosenberg discovered that the defendant was driving his car for work while inebriated and the defendant’s employer, a major alcoholic beverage distributor, knew of past DUI convictions of the defendant. The employer also knew of other of its employees drinking on the job, yet did nothing to stop this. Seth Rosenberg settled the case out of court for $100,000 with the defendant driver’s insurance and $1 Million with the defendant’s employer, by exposing the outrageous behavior that this major alcohol distributor was allowing to take place.
High Speed Rear-end Collision Involving Multiple Vehicles: $650,000 Recovery
An 85 year old man who attending dancing events twice a week was driving on the freeway when the traffic ahead of him came to an abrupt stop. He was able to stop; however the defendant, who was looking at his GPS device, slammed into the rear of our client’s car with his SUV at 65 miles per hour. The impact pushed our client’s vehicle into the car in front of him as well as the next three cars in front. Our client suffered an unstable transverse fracture of his T-8 vertebra, partially collapsed lungs and multiple rib fractures. He required fusion of his T 6 through 11 vertebrae and was hospitalized for 49 days. We recovered $650,000 for him in settlement and our client was able to return to weekly dancing.
Head on Collision – Underinsured Motorist: $505,000 Recovery
We represented a 60 year old dentist, who was traveling through an intersection with a green light when the Defendant, who had been traveling in the opposite direction, made a sudden left turn in front of him and struck our client head-on. Our client suffered a compound fracture in his left wrist, carpel tunnel syndrome in his left arm and neck and back pain. Due to ongoing pain in his wrist he is only able to work part-time as a dentist now. Dale Minami recovered $25,000 from our client’s underinsured motorist policy as well as an additional $480,000 from the client’s own insurance company
Multiple Cars, Multiple Impact Collision, Underinsured Motorist: $300,000 Recovery
Our client was entering a busy intersection on a green light when he was hit by the defendant driver. Witnesses claim the traffic signal for the defendant had been red for 30 seconds when she entered the intersection at 40-50 miles per hour. Our client was struck by the defendant and pushed into another car to his left. The defendant’s car was traveling so fast it slid all the way across the intersection until it collided with the center divider. The defendant exited her car and fled the scene. She was found to be under the influence of a number of prescription drugs. Our client suffered a lacerated artery and ruptured tendons in his left foot, lacerations to his head, and a compression fracture of his L1 vertebra. He required surgery and spent 15 days in the hospital. Dale Minami was able to obtain the policy limit of $100,000 from the defendant driver and $200,000 from our client’s underinsured motorist insurance company.
Motorcycle v. Auto – Failure to Stop: $215,000 Verdict (Alameda Superior Court)
After a 4 week trial, a jury returned a verdict for our client for $215,000. We represented a 39 year old man who was knocked off his motorcycle when it was struck by a car which ran a red light in Oakland. A witness confirmed the motorcyclist had the green light and the defendant driver ran a red light and struck him. Our client suffered a torn meniscus in his knee which required surgery and permanent nerve damage to his arm. The defense refused to settle, claiming our client was negligent in the operation of his motorcycle. The case was brought to trial by Seth Rosenberg and the jury found the defendant driver 100% at fault for the accident.
Multiple Vehicle Rear-End Collision: $132,500 Recovery
As our client was slowing to avoid a disabled vehicle in front of him, he was rear-ended by the car behind him. When our client exited his vehicle to inspect the damage, a third-vehicle which was attempting to avoid the slowed traffic, struck our client’s car and pushed it into him, knocking him to the ground. Our client suffered a disrupted anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee and a fibular fracture in his leg, both of which required surgery. We were able to obtain a total recovery from both of the at-fault drivers of $132,500.
Rear-end Collision: $250,000 Recovery
Our client was driving on the freeway with the flow of traffic when the defendant driver, who was traveling at a higher rate of speed, failed to notice him and slammed into the rear of our client’s car, totaling it. Our client suffered severe injuries to her neck which required surgery to fuse the vertebrae in her neck with metal rods. She was required to wear a head and neck brace fixated to her body for six months. The defendant settled out of court for $250,000. Dale Minami represented the client.
Auto v. Auto – Two Uninsured Motorist Actions: $200,000 Recovery
A 47 year old public utilities worker was involved in two motor vehicle accidents less than three months apart. In both accidents liability was found to be 100% the fault of the defendants; however, neither defendant had motor vehicle insurance. As a result of the accidents our client required spinal fusion surgery and missed nearly two years of work. Seth Rosenberg was able to obtain the policy limit of $100,000 from our client’s uninsured motorist policy in both of the claims.
Rear-end Collision – Spinal/Nerve Injury: $125,000 Recovery
A retired Marin elementary school teacher who was on her way to go hiking was rear-ended at a stop sign by a driver who was distracted by her unrestrained dogs jumping around in her car. Our client suffered a herniated disc at L4-5 which resulted in sciatica. The defendant questioned whether our client’s active lifestyle and age contributed to her injuries and complaints of pain. Based on expert opinion, we proved the injuries indeed arose out of the car accident. The case was settled out of court by Seth Rosenberg for $125,000 with the defendant’s automobile insurance company.
Auto v. Auto – Shoulder Injury/Surgery: $140,000 Recovery
Our 78 year old client was a passenger in his daughter’s car in an unincorporated part of Contra Costa County which was rear-ended by a man who was reaching for cigarettes on the floor of his car. While the drivers were exchanging information, the daughter smelled alcohol on the other driver’s breath and called the California Highway Patrol. The man was arrested for Driving Under the Influence. Our client suffered a torn rotator cuff which required surgery. The defendant driver did not have adequate automobile insurance coverage; therefore, after obtaining the policy limits of his liability insurance from him, the remainder of the $140,000 Recovery amount was obtained from our client’s underinsured motorist insurance policy.
Scooter v. Auto – Negligent Hiring, Training, Supervision: $150,000 Recovery
Our client, an off-duty California Department of Justice officer, was riding his scooter home from the gym in San Francisco. When his stoplight turned green, he entered the intersection and was suddenly struck by the defendant driver, who was traveling approximately 35 miles per hour. Our client was unconscious for minutes until the paramedics arrived. He suffered a broken clavicle, permanent nerve damage to both arms, and cognitive deficits as a result of the collision. The defendant driver was operating his car within the scope of his employment, and a claim was brought against his employer for negligent hiring, training, and supervision of him as their employee. The case was settled out of court by Seth Rosenberg for the employer’s insurance policy limit of $150,000
Motorcycle v. Automobile – Fractured Wrist/Forearm: $250,000 Recovery
Our client was riding his motorcycle down a busy street in San Francisco when a woman who was attempting to parallel park her car suddenly pulled out ahead of him, blind-siding the motorcycle. The force from the impact pushed our client into a car to his left and knocked him to the ground. The driver who had pulled out into traffic continued across three lanes of traffic and hit a fire hydrant on the opposite side of the street. It was determined that she was on a mixture of anti-depressant prescription drugs known to cause dizziness and drowsiness. The plaintiff suffered fractures to his ribs and both forearms. Attorney Seth Rosenberg sought punitive damages and the defendant settled out of court.
Commercial Bus Accident: $225,000 Recovery
Mark Fong represented a 71 year-old woman who was riding a commercial bus in San Joaquin County which attempted to pass a rice truck on a two-lane highway when the truck suddenly made a left turn and struck the bus. The client fractured her leg, separated her shoulder and was hospitalized for 13 days. Mark Fong and recovered $225,000 for her damages.