Max Wrongful Death Car Accident Verdict
Trial Attorney Jason Krakower obtained a 100 percent verdict in favor of our client’s estate.
Our client was tragically killed in a motor vehicle crash, when he was ejected from his motorcycle, leaving behind a six-week-old daughter he never got to know and a fiancé who is still grieving years later.
The defendant, for five years, took a “no pay position”, blaming the accident entirely on our client. Our firm never lost faith and tirelessly advocated for our client, giving his family a Voice in the process. Andrew Levine handled the litigation and conducted key depositions of numerous police officers, thoroughly discrediting the defendants blame game. Now through Jason’s courtroom wizardry the jury has spoken and delivered a loud thunderous measure of justice.
Our client was driving his motorcycle on Oriental Blvd in Brooklyn when the defendant made a right-hand turn and collided with our client, propelling him off of his motorcycle and into a telephone pole. The Defendant was adamant that our client was speeding and illegally riding his motorcycle in the bicycle lane prior to the accident. For five years the Defendant never made a single offer in the case, continuously arguing that the accident was completely our client’s fault.
At trial, Jason was able to prove that the Defendant was not keeping a proper lookout and should have seen our client on his motorcycle and avoided the accident. The jury agreed and found the Defendant to be 100% at fault for the accident.
While the monetary award, which will help take care of our client’s daughter for life, is certainly fulfilling, the most gratifying part of the trial was being able to look the client’s fiancé in the eyes, who had to sit through the trial and listen to the horrifying account of how her fiancé died, and tell her that this accident was in no way his fault, providing her with some much-needed relief.
$950K Pedestrian Accident Injury Award
As a vehicle was attempting a left turn, it struck our client resulting in serious injury. Our client had the right of way as she was walking in the crosswalk when inexplicably, the driver turned through the crosswalk and smashed into her. Our client was sent sprawling through the air and driven into the ground; the impact of the vehicle resulted in numerous rib fractures and a head injury. Unfortunately, when her head struck the roadway, it led to subarachnoid hemorrhage.
As a result of the brain injury, she had limited recall of the events and required extensive medication and treatment. She routinely required follow-ups with a neurologist and psychologist. Raphaelson & Levine retained a leading brain injury rehabilitation specialist who performed a thorough assessment and developed a treatment program. Utilizing sophisticated medical technology, he was able to determine that previously undetected injuries were present in the axons of the gray and white brain matter.
Andrew Levine and Narciso Garcia aggressively litigated her case in Kings County Supreme Court. At each step, the firm sought and won various court rulings for her, including:
- Summary judgment on the issue of liability
- Summary judgment on the issue of serious injury, an order precluding the defendant from testifying and an order granting a trial preference.
Today at mediation Andrew Levine and Howard Raphaelson brought the matter to a successful resolution securing recovery of $950,000 from a policy of insurance that provided a maximum recovery of 1 million dollars.
“This settlement guarantees our client’s future needs are met and gave her a strong and meaningful measure of justice. We’re all grateful for the justice that she and family received today.” – Andrew Levine
$1.75M Fall From Heights Injury Award
After a truck driver fell from heights, suffering traumatic brain injury, they turned to Raphaelson & Levine for help.
The serious injury occurred when the owner of the large warehouse located in New York City negligently and recklessly required our client, a truck driver, to go on top of this vehicle without the proper safety equipment or fall protection.
Inevitably, the driver fell off the rig, plummeting headfirst into the concrete ground which resulted in a traumatic brain injury that left our client with memory loss, cognitive deficits, and loss of hearing in one ear. After five years of intense litigation, Raphaelson and Levine were able to secure justice for our client in the form of a $1.75 settlement during mediation, that will take care of himself and his family for the rest of their lives.
An important take away from this case is that property owners and businesses must look out for the safety of those who come onto their property. Safety before profits should be the most important agenda for any busy that requires their own workers or those that perform any work on their property, to be subject to elevation dangers.
$2 Million Truck Accident Settlement
After a 43-year-old Pepsi Cola truck driver had their life altered by a reckless truck driver, they turned to Raphaelson & Levine for justice.
Known as a family man and hard worker, our client loved working hard as a truck driver delivering Pepsi Cola while looking forward to watching his two sons play school sports after work.
His life and American dream was torn away when a reckless truck driver’s dangerous actions caused a collision on the Long Island Expressway, leaving our client with serious spinal injuries including herniated discs in the back and neck, and tremendous pain and suffering.
Personal injury attorneys Howard Rahaelson and Andrew Levine, partners, had previously mediated the case at NAM and had the courage to recommend rejecting an offer of $1.5 Million, instead pressing forward to trial. With a continued fight on our client’s behalf, we diligently prepared for trial.
With the trial date approaching, through skilled, expert negotiation Howard Raphaelson secured an additional $500,000 of compensation, earning our client a truck accident settlement of $2,000,000.
We are proud to be known as the “voice of the injured,” and ensure our clients have the resources they need to heal and take care of their families following a life-altering injury.
Partners Howard Raphaelson and Andrew Levine have been recognized by Super Lawyers, New York’s Best Lawyers, New Yorker Magazine, and other legal organizations that rank the countries best lawyers.
$2.5M Construction Fall Injury Pre-Trial Settlement
After a laborer was injured while working at a large scale construction project in downtown New York City, they turned to Raphaelson & Levine for help. Our client was hired to place waterproofing material down on a partially demolished roof on a property owned by the City of New York but was not provided with any safety equipment or fall protection.
Suddenly, the roof he was standing on collapsed leading him to fall down nearly 15 feet into a stairwell below, shattering numerous bones including his pelvis and multiple ribs upon impact and sustaining additional injuries to his neck and back.
Our firm aggressively litigated the matter in New York Supreme Court, where, during litigation, the defendants requested that the matter be mediated. The mediation was unsuccessful in resolving the case due to a multitude of insurance issues, and our firm continued proceeding aggressively towards trial. Leading up to the trial, our client, with advice from our firm, made the decision to turn down three seven-figure offers.
After exhaustive discovery, including upwards of ten depositions, we moved for summary judgment. Attorney Steven November authored exceptional papers and the Court granted our client summary judgment versus both the City of New York and the General Contractor.
Our client placed his confidence in our firm to provide him with a voice. Through skilled negotiation partner Andrew Levine successfully delivered a $2.5 million dollar settlement which will provide guaranteed compensation to our client for the full extent of his injuries, and will hopefully serve an important lesson to contractors throughout New York about job-site safety.
$500K False Arrest Settlement
After a school custodian was falsely arrested following allegations of sexually assaulting a 10-year-old student at his place of employment, he turned to Raphaelson & Levine for help. New York City Police officers were informed by the alleged assault victim that the custodian may have similarly assaulted three other students.
The victim was jailed, and after some two weeks had passed, the New York City Department of Education launched an investigation of the matter. The investigator opined that our client’s main accusers’ allegations were marred by inconsistencies and that the three other accusers have not been assaulted. The investigator was also concerned by the fact that the main accuser claimed to have been assaulted in a heavily trafficked, well-monitored hallway in which an incident likely would have been observed. The main accuser ultimately recanted her allegation, our client was freed after 46-day-long incarceration.
As counsel to the school custodian, Steven Gershowitz, a civil rights attorneys at Raphaelson & Levine, sued the New York City Police Department, the office of Queens County Dist. Atty., the New York City Department of Corrections and the parent of each of those agencies, the city of New York; alleging that our client was wrongfully arrested and convicted.
Mr. Gershowitz claimed that the main accusers’ allegations were marred by inconsistencies, but the investigating detectives disregarded those inconsistencies. He further claimed that the investigators did not perform a follow-up investigation after the custodian was arrested.
Defense counsel contended that the identifiable, credible victim identified our client on two separate occasions, thus establishing probable cause for the custodian’s arrest. He also contended that the main accuser’s accusations were consistent until ultimately recantation.
Injuries/Damages: Post-traumatic Stress Disorder
Our client endured 46 days of incarceration. He claimed that he suffered the humanization and psychological distress that cause post-traumatic stress disorder, with manifestations that include paranoia and a loss of confidence and self-esteem. He undergoes psychological counseling.
The custodian, who had not previously been arrested, also claimed that his arrest and incarceration blemished an otherwise unquestioned reputation. He resumed his job after being released from prison, but he transferred to another school about two years later.
Our firm sought recovery of damages for our client’s past and future pain and suffering. During the trial’s third day, the city asked Mr. Gershowitz if he would agree to a disclosed settlement. The city then agreed to pay $500,000.
$750K Slip & Fall Trial Verdict
Raphaelson & Levine recently represented a man who injured his neck and back after a slip and fall accident at a rental premise during the winter.
The defendant, a New York landlord, hired a meteorologist to testify that freezing rain was actively falling at the time of the accident and had been for an hour and a half leading up to the accident. They argued that they were not responsible for our client’s fall since New York law states that they are not responsible to remove snow and ice during a “storm in progress.”
The day before trial was set to begin, the defendant offered an initial settlement of $125,000, however, while negotiations were still ongoing, they withdrew their offer and said they wanted to try the case.
Without the need of a meteorologist, trial attorney Jason Krakower, was able to prove to the jury that the ice that caused our client’s fall was not from the freezing rain that was falling at the time of the accident but rather was from ice that had formed 24-48 hours prior to the accident.
The jury returned a verdict 100% in favor of our client for $750,000, which will provide compensation for his pain and suffering to date as well as pain and suffering he will endure in the future.
$1.8M Steamfitter Injury Settlement
While working as a Steamfitter on a construction site in New York, our client, a 60-year-old from the Bronx, was struck by a 200-pound pipe that was being hoisted in order to install it to an i-beam. The impact of this collision resulted in serious injury to the Steamfitter, who ultimately was never able to return to work.
Our firm used extensive resources including an economist and medical experts to prove our case, with the help of National Arbitration mediator Robert Adams.
After aggressive litigation, at a final pretrial conference in Bronx County, the terms of a $1.8 Million Dollar settlement were reached between partner Howard Raphaelson and a mechanical contractor that was hired by Bronx Community College and the City of New York.
We are proud that we were able to obtain an award that will allow this injured worker to support himself and his family for the rest of his life, and hope this matter serves to help make job sites safer for workers throughout New York.
$865K Truck Accident Settlement
Raphaelson & Levine represented a young man who was struck by a dump truck while driving his company vehicle. The impact resulted in injuries to his hips and lower back which ultimately required surgery.
After extensive depositions and aggressive litigation in the Kings County Supreme Court, a motion was made to the court seeking a liability judgment. The court agreed and granted our client summary judgment. The truck driver appealed the judgment to the Appellate Division, Second Department. While the appeal was pending the battle shifted to liability.
Our firm retained medical experts, an economist, and developed a life care plan which projected our client’s future medical needs.
The matter was mediated before a hearing officer at National Arbitration and Mediation. The firm rejected an offer of half a million dollars, confident our client deserved more. Less than one month from the mediation, partner Andrew Levine reached a settlement on behalf of the client in the amount of $865,000.00
$475K Brooklyn Housing Complex Trip & Fall Settlement
$570K Car Crash Settlement
A pharmacy assistant manager was driving southbound in the Jamaica section of Queens when her vehicle was involved in a three-car crash, resulting in a serious back injury.
When the victim was about 50 feet shy of the intersection at 86th Avenue, they stopped in traffic. Before they could resume travel, her vehicle was struck by a northbound vehicle that crossed 150th Street center line. The collision occurred moments after that car was struck by another driver, who was traveling on 86th Avenue.
The pharmacy assistant manager alleged that both vehicles that struck her vehicle were negligent in the operation of their respective vehicles. She also claimed that the first vehicle that struck her was speeding and contended that he lost control of his vehicle after the initial collision when he failed to yield the right away.
The defense contended that the defendant stopped at the stop sign, and claimed that the collision occurred while they were inching into the intersection and that the vehicle that struck him was maintaining a speed of 45 miles per hour.
The third vehicle driver stated that the incident occurred while he was test-driving a vehicle that had a mechanical problem. He claimed that he maintained a speed of 5 mph.
Our client’s injuries include bulges of the L4-5 and L5-S1 intervertebral discs, as well as limitations due to accident PTSD. Conservative treatment was done with acupuncture, physical therapy, and pain management treatment.
Although the defense counsel produced a surveillance videotape and suggested that the tape demonstrated that her limitations were not disabling, our firm aggressively litigated a $570,000 negotiated car accident settlement.
$2.5M Airplane Crash Wrongful Death
A man was killed when the American Airlines aircraft he was traveling on suddenly crashed. A testament to his reputation among the legal community and expert negotiating skills, partner Howard Raphaelson was anointed chief negotiator by a panel of lawyers. Raphaelson was able to quickly recovered $2.5 million settlement on behalf of the deceased’s family.
$500K Apartment Lead Poisoning
The parents of a 10-year-old child sued the landlord after their boy ingested paint chips in his apartment. The child developed learning disabilities that Howard Raphaelson successfully linked to the ingestion of lead paint chips. The matter was resolved prior to jury selection for nearly $500,000.
The defendant’s attorney informed the Raphaelson Law Firm that this payment represented the largest individual award ever paid by the defendant’s insurance carrier in a lead paint exposure case.
$3M Automobile Defect Injury
Howard Raphaelson and Andrew Levine recovered a $3 million settlement for a 13-year-old boy who was paralyzed as a result of a seating design defect in a minivan.
Our firm’s determination to overcome all odds, including a courtroom battle against a giant auto manufacturing company, led to a legal victory for this very special boy. Although the defendant was forced to provide substantial compensation that will support this child for the remainder of his life, the manufacturer’s greatest failure was putting profits before passenger safety.
$5.3M Fatal Train Accident Settlement
After a young father was killed as a result of a train accident in New York, his family contacted Raphaelson & Levine Law Firm for representation. Our firm successfully brought a wrongful death lawsuit against the defendants, which was resolved in a $5.3 million settlement for the family of the deceased.
$2.2M Medical Error Injury Settlement
Repeated failures to properly diagnose severe headaches resulted in a young woman becoming legally blind. The woman, a teaching aide, was in and out of three emergency rooms in October of 1998, before she was properly evaluated by a neurologist and referred to a neuro-ophthalmologist. She first went to Westchester Medical Center and later to Our Lady of Mercy Hospital.
By the time he identified that pressure on her optical nerve was the cause of her headaches, the damage was irreversible. She was left with no central vision, sees only shadows, no colors, and must use a white cane. The case against Westchester Medical was resolved for $1.75 million and with her primary care group for an additional $500,000.
$500K Rear-End Underinsured Accident Settlement
A delivery driver was driving on the southbound side of the Saw Mill River Parkway, in Westchester County when she was involved in a four-way collision that began when a southbound motorist struck the rear end of a preceding vehicle causing a multiple car pile-up accidents.
Due to the injuries, the victim received from the accident she had two shoulder surgeries to repair her torn rotator cuff. The victim contended that she would need to move to another country, where she can receive the assistance of her family to care for her two children. She also claimed that she suffers from residual pain and range of motion in her right shoulder.
After several weeks of physical therapy, the victim was seen by an Orthopedist and advised to undergo Arthroscopic Surgery. Following the procedure, she developed stiffness in the shoulder and required a revision procedure where scar tissue was removed.
The vehicle that struck her in the rear had a $100,000 insurance policy, which was offered immediately upon filing the lawsuit. However, the defense contended that the preceding motorists stopped abruptly and such, claimed they could not have avoided the collision.
Before the scheduled arbitration, personal injury attorneys Andrew Levine and Dario Martinez, made a claim under the Underinsured Motorist Endorsement of our client’s insurance policy, obtaining an additional $400,000 for a total car accident shoulder injury settlement of $500,000.
This recovery was noted to be one of the largest in New York for this type of injury.
Levine recalls, “this case was the perfect example of the importance of having the proper underinsurance on your vehicle policies.” Our client was able to protect herself when the dangerous driver failed to have sufficient insurance. This benefit costs very little in comparison with the advantage it has brought our client. Feel free to forward the ‘Declarations Page’ of your insurance policy for our office to review.
$1.5 M Scaffold Injury
Raphaelson and Levine’s long battle with Bovis Lend Lease ended in a $1.5 million settlement for a 65-year-old construction worker who fell off a scaffold and broke his leg. Our client was awarded summary judgment by a Bronx judge because of the defendant’s failure to properly secure our client while he was on a scaffold. Although he was given a harness, there were no anchorage points for him to tie off to. Justice was delivered to this hard working man, affectionately nicknamed “Happy,” by his coworkers.
$750K Sideswipe Car Crash Settlement
A gourmet chef was injured as a passenger when the vehicle she was riding in was struck by a truck. The victim was an occupant of a vehicle that was parked alongside a curb of Jamaica Avenue, near 135th Street, in Queens. The vehicle’s owner also occupied the vehicle. As the driver drove away from the curb and entered traffic, the vehicle collided with a truck.
As a result of the impact, the victim sustained spinal injuries that led to epidural injections and ultimately a laminectomy, a procedure to relieve pressure in the spine due to a herniated disk. The case was particularly difficult because our client had two prior accidents, both pursued legally, with one resulting in a back injury in the same area that our client ultimately underwent the laminectomy.
The defense contended that the victim was driving the vehicle (not the passenger) and that she turned into traffic from a parked position and initiated the collision. The police report supported the driver of the trucks accounts of the incident, but the owner of the vehicle that was sideswiped claims that the report contained inaccuracies that were a result of his limitations with the English language.
The victim claimed that she still suffers from residual pain and that she can not endure prolonged periods in which she is standing, and that she cannot lift heavy objects.
Our firm hired a pain management expert, who agreed that our client suffers from unresolved symptoms. As a result of the injuries, it prevents her resumption of her chef’s job.
The defense counsel downplayed the victims claim that she cannot resume her chef’s job, however through aggressive litigation Andre Levine, firm partner, was able to negotiate a recovery of $750,000 injury settlement on the eve of trial.
A portion of the sum was placed in a structured settlement thus the client’s ultimate recovery will near $1,000,000. This recovery was featured in the New York Jury Verdict Reporter as a top recovery.
$2.25M Scaffold Fall Settlement
The victim, a construction mason, fell 45 feet from unstable scaffolding on a job site in Rockland County, NY. The fall resulted in serious injuries to his back, hip, and knee, including broken bones in his neck, back, and knee, hip fractures, and spinal cord as well as a 12-centimeter laceration of the left leg.
The scaffold fall injuries required multiple surgeries to put in (then take out) hardware used to fuse and mend the victim’s broken bones and to treat the deep cut. The workers will live with chronic pain, motion loss and he can’t lift heavy objects — all of which make it impossible for him to return to his old job.
He hired the construction accident attorneys at Raphaelson & Levine to represent him in a lawsuit against the general contractor, Pontiac Holding L.L.C., and the property owner, Bradley Corp. Park.
Our firm argued the scaffolding platform was comprised due to unsecured wooden planks. Since the platform was not secured the planks shifted and caused his fall. Additionally, the worker was also was not given the proper safety harness, hard hat, or any other equipment that would have prevented the fall.
To prove our client’s claim of residual pain and reductions of range of motion, and the inability to lift heavy objects, our firm hired an expert economist who determined that our client could not resume physical labor, and could not find alternative employment, given their limited education and inability to speak English.
The defense counsel contended the victim can perform light-duty construction work or other work, with no reduction of earning capacity.
The matter proceeded to mediation and despite an aggressive defense — in what is typically a very plaintiff-unfriendly county — our client was awarded a $2,250,000 injury settlement in Rockland Supreme Court. The defendants were found in violation of Labor Law codes 240(1) and 241(6), which require employers to provide workers with safe equipment.
$1.5M Nassau County Auto Accident
Our client, a woman in her fifties, had a long-standing history of prior injuries including prior surgery to her spine, and extensive care to her neck, back and wrists. These were the precise injuries we secured compensation for.
While New York Law does not permit a recovery for injuries that pre date an accident, it does permit a recovery for the “exacerbation and aggravation” of those injuries. Essentially you must prove a worsening of the conditions attributable to the accident or incident.
Through sophisticated medical analysis, use of top flight experts, and diligent legal work, we were able to establish that our client was asymptomatic prior to the accident we represented her for, despite her 15-year history of treatment.
Our office also scored numerous legal victories that helped secure this outstanding recovery. We obtained summary judgment on the issue of liability. This meant the sole issue the jury would decide would be the amount of damages. We also obtained preclusion of the defendant at the time of trial which meant the defendant could not testify and challenge the plaintiffs version of the incident, the force of the impact, or the appearance of the plaintiff following the accident.
We proceeded to a mediation at NAM (National Arbitration and Mediation). Through aggressive negotiation and a trial presentation we secured a settlement of $1.5 million dollars for an exacerbation and aggravation claim. This money brings our client well-deserved compensation and a pound of justice.
$2.5M Airplane Accident Settlement
A man was killed when the American Airlines aircraft he was traveling on suddenly crashed. As a result of expert negotiating skills, Howard Raphaelson was anointed chief negotiator by a panel of lawyers and quickly recovered a $2.5 million settlement on behalf of the deceased’s family.
$8.5M Building Collapse Settlement
A landmark settlement for a 10-year-old boy whose leg was amputated after being buried under a pile of concrete after the wall of a building on the Grand Concourse collapsed on him. The building’s owner received a violation for failure to maintain the exterior building wall, and the family hired our firm to receive justice.
While headed to their dad’s apartment, looking forward to a sunny day at a local city pool our client and his brother were critically injured when a cascade of bricks and cinder block fell from the Bronx storefront. The building collapse resulted in a severe injury including a severed leg six inches above the ankle.
An attempt to save the child limp was attempted by the medical staff at New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia, however, the severity of the injury required the young boy’s leg to be amputated.
Our firm litigated a multi-million dollar settlement on behalf of the child’s family. The amount of compensation awarded was consistent with the highest awards ever upheld by the appellate courts in the State of New York for an injury similar to this little boy’s injury.