Saturday, December 19, 2009
Saturday, October 3, 2009
Yesterday, a jury in Wisconsin awarded the family of a deceased farm worker $3.7 million in damages for medical malpractice. Gustavo Espinal-Santos died Jan. 1, 2004, after contracting blastomycosis, a fungal infection often transmitted through water or soil. He presented at a family practice in December of 2003, where he was examined by physician assistants and diagnosed with pneumonia. The family alleged a failure to run basic diagnostic tests, specifically x-rays. After a four-day trial, the jury deliberated eight hours before finding negligence on the part of the practice and the physician supervising the physician assistants. The award will be reduced pursuant to Wisconsin's damages cap. The story, courtesy of greenbay pressgazette.com, is here.
Thursday, July 30, 2009
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Thursday, July 9, 2009
A divided Michigan Supreme Court has allowed to stand a ruling that a dead mother's family can sue for $1.4 M for lost household services. The defendants argued the damages were noneconomic and, thus, subject to a damages cap. I haven't read the opinion, and I can't vouch for the valuation, but the principle seems accurate. Replacing these services will require a monetary payment. The Chicago Tribune has a brief story here.
Monday, April 13, 2009
Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Thursday, March 26, 2009
Thursday, February 26, 2009
New York Personal Injury Cases Blog is providing us with some recent pain-and-suffering data points:
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
The AP has details; $100M of the amount sought is punitive damages. The jury found causation in an earlier phase of the trial, and the since-decertified class action established in Florida that the tobacco companies hid risks of smoking.
Monday, February 9, 2009
A few years ago, the Florida Supreme Court threw out a $145 billion class verdict against various members of the tobacco industry. Now, as Sheila noted in last week's roundup, the first Florida trial post-Engle has begun; Bloomberg has a somewhat more detailed piece on the trial's start. In the trial, the plaintiffs do get to take advantage of the preclusive effect of the class finding that cigarettes are addictive and cause cancer.
The trial is in three parts, with the first focusing on liability; the second (if needed) on compensatory damages and the availability of punitive damages; and the third (again if needed) on the amount of punitive damages.
Update: In case you're particularly interested in the case, you can watch it live (for a charge) at CourtroomView.com.
Saturday, February 7, 2009
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
Over at New York Injury Cases Blog, John Hochfelder surveys verdicts and settlements in recent foot injury cases (excluding amputations). Hochfelder finds a wide range from a low of $75,000 to a high of $2.2 million. He attributes the disparity to the nature of the injury - the $75k for example was for an injured pinky toe while the $2.2 million was for a crushed foot requiring complex reconstruction surgery.
Saturday, January 3, 2009
The Star Tribune has details on the trial court ruling relating to PFCs in the groundwater in Washington County, Minnesota. Essentially, the plaintiffs can't go forward with claims that the PFCs harmed their health, but can proceed on a trespass claim and a (slightly vague from the story) negligence claim, and have the potential to obtain punitive damages on those claims.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
Saturday, December 6, 2008
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
Sunday, November 16, 2008
The federal judge overseeing the eternal Exxon Valdez litigation rejected a request to modify the plan for distribution of punitive damages, a portion of which will -- maybe, perhaps, soon -- be distributed to plaintiffs while the parties continue to fight over some remaining parts.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
On Friday, the Ninth Circuit issued its opinion in Southern Union v. Irvin (pdf). The court previously had vacated and remanded the original punitive award, which was 153 times the compensatories. On remand, the trial court reduced the punitive damages award to $4 million, and the defendant appealed again. Notably, this time, the Ninth Circuit wasn't messing around - no remand; it decided that 3 to 1 was the right ratio and reduced the punitive damages award to just over $1.8 million.