Recent Verdicts/Settlements

Below are some of our recent verdicts and settlements from personal injury cases spanning motor vehicle accidents to medical malpractice and more.

$1,950,000 – Our client underwent a CT scan of her abdomen after presentation to the emergency room with abdominal pain, which was thought to be appendicitis. The scan was interpreted as normal and the plaintiff was diagnosed with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). For the following 16 months, she continued to have abdominal pain and was told she had GERD by various physicians. Subsequently, she underwent a colonoscopy, which revealed stage 4 colon cancer. The defendants allegedly failed to properly diagnose the mass allegedly visible on the CT scan and had they done so, the plaintiff would have been a candidate for surgical resection of her colon and would have survived the disease. However, she succumbed to the disease nearly 4 1/2 years after its diagnosis. She is survived by her husband and several adult children. This matter was settled one month before trial.

$1,200,000 – Plaintiff’s estate sued Vermillion County for the death of their father, an inmate, who was not provided adequate medical treatment despite his requests for same.  This matter was filed in Federal Court, in the Central District of Illinois, under 42 USC Section 1983 for the deprivation of rights provided by the US Constitution.

$1,000,000 – Plaintiff suffered herniated discs and underwent a fusion surgery after being rear-ended by a member of the United States Army.  This matter was filed in Federal Court, in the Northern District of Illinois, under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA). 

$1,100,000  –  Confidential

$950,000 – Plaintiff’s estate sued Vermillion County for the death of their father, an inmate, who died because of being beaten and tasered excessively. This matter was filed in Federal Court, in the Central District of Illinois, under 42 USC Section 1983 for the deprivation of rights provided by the US Constitution.

$900,000 – Confidential

$750,000Plaintiff was prescribed Dilantin for seizures.  After presenting to the emergency room and complaining of a diffuse rash on his torso, Plaintiff was discharged and advised the rash was likely due to his soap.  Within days thereafter, Plaintiff returned to the emergency room where it was indicated that he was likely having an allergic reaction to the Dilantin.  Plaintiff suffered severe burns to most of his body (Stevens-Johnson Syndrome).  Unfortunately, Plaintiff died of unrelated causes during the pendency of the litigation and the case was settled. This matter was filed in Federal Court, in the Northern District of Illinois, under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA).

$700,000 — The plaintiff, age 53, was descending an outside stairwell of his apartment when the edge of the stair broke, causing him to fall down the flight of stairs. He suffered injury to his cervical and lumbar spine. He initially treated conservatively for his injuries with physical therapy and injections. Later, he underwent a fusion to his cervical spine by Dr. Mark Lorenz at Hinsdale Orthopedics. With regard to his lower back, Dr. Scott Glaser recommended a spinal cord stimulator, but the plaintiff could not have the permanent procedure due to his other comorbidities. Notably, the plaintiff’s pain subsided significantly with a trial stimulator. The defense disputed the lower back injury as being related to the fall.

$658,000 –  Plaintiff, then age 19, was a passenger in a vehicle.  They were traveling southbound in the far left lane on IL-90/94 just north of 18th street when they were struck by a hit-and-run driver. Upon being struck, the vehicle hit the left concrete median wall. The vehicle spun around and came to a stop facing the opposite direction of traffic. Plaintiff and other occupants exited the vehicle; and, when they were near the rear of the vehicle, another vehicle struck the stopped vehicle causing Plaintiff to be pinned under the vehicle. As a result of the accidents, Plaintiff sustained multiple injuries and underwent a knee surgery. There were multiple layers of insurance coverage.  Part of this matter settled pre-suit.  Part of the matter settled after some discovery.  Part of this matter settled at a binding mediation.

$574,507 (before reductions) — In January 2010, the plaintiff retained the defendant, the Law Office of Kevin O’Brien, to represent him in a workers’ compensation matter for a work-related fall in October 2009. The plaintiff was working as a sous chef when he slipped and fell on ice in the freezer, injuring his right shoulder and neck. During treatment for his right shoulder injury, the plaintiff underwent a cervical MRI, and he was informed by his orthopedic surgeon that he also had a C3-4 disk herniation and a congenital abnormality known as Chiari malformation. Notably, prior to the October 2009 workplace incident, the plaintiff never complained of neck pain nor was he aware that he had the congenital abnormality. On May 20, 2010, Dr. Vincent Traynelis, the plaintiff’s treating neurosurgeon, conducted a fusion surgery to repair the C3-4 disk herniation, and he conducted a C1-6 fusion and decompression to stabilize the now symptomatic Chiari malformation. On Aug. 4, 2010, the defendant sent the plaintiff an email in legal jargon requesting permission to settle his case. On that same date, the plaintiff had just gotten out of another hospital stay, having undergone his ninth brain surgery in 2½ months. Prior to Aug. 4, 2010, the defendant had nothing in writing to show that the plaintiff wanted to settle his case because he needed money. The plaintiff agreed to settle, but only because he was told by the Law Offices of Kevin O’Brien that the settlement was for his shoulder injury only. Notably, the plaintiff never received any settlement documentation in the email, which showed that, in fact, his entire case was settled in full.

The settlement documentation showed that the C3-4 disk herniation and aggravation of the pre-existing Chiari malformation were expressly denied as being related to the workplace incident. After the settlement funds were distributed, the plaintiff continued to call the Law Office of Kevin O’Brien as did the Law Office of Kevin O’Brien place calls to the plaintiff. Phone records prove that calls were placed from August 2010 until June 2012, the first time the plaintiff received some of his settlement documentation from the Law Office of Kevin O’Brien. The plaintiff had to request the settlement documentation three times before receiving a full copy.

The defendant, the Law Office of Kevin O’Brien, contended at trial that the plaintiff wanted to settle because he was in desperate need of money; the plaintiff knew his congenital abnormality, Chiari malformation, was not related to the October 2009 workplace incident because he filed for Social Security Disability Insurance for the injury; Dr. Vincent Traynelis specifically told the defendant law office that the Chiari malformation was not related to the workplace incident in October 2009. The plaintiff knew he settled his case in full because he never spoke to the Law Offices of Kevin O’Brien after the case settled in August 2010.

Had the Law Office of Kevin O’Brien not prematurely settled the plaintiff’s workers’ compensation case while the plaintiff was treating for his related workplace injuries and had the Law Office of Kevin O’Brien properly investigated the cause of the plaintiff’s injuries, including the aggravation of the pre-existing condition, the plaintiff would have recovered damages under the Illinois Worker’s Compensation Act for a permanently totally disabled person. After 3 1/2 years of litigation and nearly two weeks of trial, justice prevailed for the plaintiff.

$450,000Plaintiff underwent a surgery on the incorrect level of the lower spine.  Hospital paid the settlement prior to a lawsuit being filed.  Plaintiff did not want to file a lawsuit for her own reasons.

$403,000 – Petitioner was injured while working.  He injured his hand which required multiple surgeries.  $158,000 was reserved for future medical care in Medicare-Set-Aside (MSA).  Petitioner also received SSDI benefits.

$400,000 — Metra passenger Pollard was behaving erratically while riding as a passenger on the Metra train, talking loudly on his phone and cursing. Metra conductor Holcomb respectfully asked him twice during the ride from downtown to quiet down and stop swearing. When the train stopped at Hyde Park, Holcomb got off to help passengers disembark. Pollard got off and started to walk away, then turned around and swung at Holcomb. The two of them wrestled on the platform and Holcomb ended up with a fracture to his mid-foot.

The plaintiff’s wage loss was approximately $225,000 to $265,000. The plaintiff’s medical bills were paid by the railroad and not admitted. Holcomb never returned to work and had approximately 31 months of wage loss till age 60.

X-rays and CT scans showed fracture of the medial cuneiform and malalignment of the first and second metatarsals. Surgery was an orif of medial cuneiform and navicular-medial cuneiform. No future medicals.

Regional pain syndrome was a differential diagnosis and never confirmed. He was not treated for it. He uses a cane occasionally, although it was not prescribed, and takes over-the-counter meds.

The Metra Police Department was in a state of chaos at the time as documented by the Hilliard-Hynes report, commissioned by Metra. We argued that Metra did not provide a safe place to work due to lack of police presence, lack of training for conductors on how to deal with unruly passengers and lack of closed-circuit cameras. There were many prior similar incidents of criminal attacks on Metra conductors, including the murder of conductor Wilbur Hooten on the same train line.

The railroad claimed the sole cause of the injury was the conduct of Pollard.

Mr. Bizzieri worked the file up for trial; Brugess and Terranova tried it until settlement.

$395,000 — Our client, who suffers from cerebral palsy and walks with a cane, tripped and fell on unsecured mats placed outside an elevator bank to protect the carpet during a commercial tenant’s move out of the premises. As a result of the fall, our client suffered severe and permanent injuries to his rotator cuff, requiring surgical intervention. This matter was settled at mediation shortly after the filing of the lawsuit.

$321,800 — The petitioner, now age 53, injured his cervical spine while working, requiring a cervical fusion and disk removal. He underwent two surgeries in an attempt to return to work. Eventually, he returned to work part time. This settlement represents a wage differential under the act. Additionally, the petitioner will receive an annuity in the amount of approximately $33,000 for the cost of future medical treatment as a Medicare set-aside arrangement.

$320,000 – Plaintiff, a pedestrian within a crosswalk, was struck by a vehicle.  Plaintiff suffered leg injuries requiring surgery.  This matter settled prior to a lawsuit being filed at Plaintiff’s request.

$285,000 — Settlement for a 59-year-old woman who suffered serious lower back injuries while lifting a heavy pan of cookie dough at The Creamery. Our client underwent a fusion with the insertion of hardware; however, the hardware was later removed. She will not return to work in the immediate future. In addition to her settlement, our client received a $195,000 Medicare set-aside (MSA) arrangement for all future medical treatment for her lower back.

$230,000 — The plaintiff, age 56, was rear-ended while at a complete stop. She suffered a torn rotator cuff in her shoulder. Initially, our client underwent conservative treatment in the form of physical therapy at ATI as well as cortisone injections by her treating orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Nikhil Verma at Midwest Orthopedics at Rush. Ultimately, however, surgical intervention was necessary. She had a great recovery.

$230,000 – Petitioner was injured while working.  He injured his back which required surgery.  Petitioner was able to return to work full duty.

$225,000 — Presuit settlement for a mother who was killed in a DUI car crash. The amount was the extent of the coverage and the defendant driver did not have any assets.

$220,000 – Petitioner was injured while working for the City of Chicago.  He injured his shoulder which required two surgeries.  Petitioner did not return to work at the City of Chicago.

$170,000 – Petitioner was injured while working for the City of Chicago.  He had pre-existing issues in his shoulder and lower back.  Petitioner was able to return to work full duty.

$150,000 — Highly disputed truck collision as to who had the right of way on Route 83 just east of Harlem Avenue, where two eastbound lanes of travel become a single lane. The plaintiff, a young woman, suffered a comminuted fracture to her patella (knee) during the crash. Our client had to be extricated from her vehicle due to the severity of the collision. This matter was settled at mediation.

$150,000 — Our client, a father of four, was working as an electrician for his employer, Four Star Electric, at a Walgreens construction site in Huntley, Illinois. While pushing an A-frame cart that held 14 reels of wire, the front caster (wheel) fell into an uncovered plumber’s cleanout (hole). The plumber’s cleanout had been created and left uncovered by employees of a subcontractor of the general contractor on the project. The A-frame cart fell onto its side as a result of the front caster dropping into the plumber’s cleanout, injuring our client. This matter was settled presuit.

$120,000 — A Metra employee suffered a herniated disk in his lower spine while working at the storehouse in Blue Island. Our client entered the bed of a truck on a forklift to offload reels of cable. While in the bed of the semitrailer, the dock plate automatically reset itself, unbeknownst to our client. While backing up out of the bed of the truck, the forklift crashed into the dock plate/dock.

$100,000 — Presuit settlement for a 35-year-old man who suffered lumbar herniation in a rear-end car collision.

$90,000 — Our client, while in the course of his employment for the Illinois State Toll Highway Authority, was driving in a staggered tandem of snowplow trucks to clear snow/ice off southbound Interstate 294. He had his emergency lights flashing as a warning to those on the road. Our client was entirely within the left most lane of the road when the co-defendant entered the road from an entrance ramp in an effort to get ahead of the tandem of trucks. Soon thereafter, she admittedly lost control of her vehicle and spun into our client’s lane, causing an impact. As a result of that initial collision, our client was then immediately rear-ended by a Con-Way Freight tractor-trailer, which was traveling behind him illegally within the left most lane of traffic. The State of Illinois has left lane restrictions for the operation of tractor-trailers at and near the location of the impact. As a result of the occurrence, our client suffered cervical and lumbar injuries. This matter was settled at mediation.

$80,000 — A 35-year-old triathlete was injured at an Equinox gym. She suffered a disk injury to her thoracic spine (middle of back) when she fell off a stationary bicycle during a spin class. The incident occurred as our client attempted to adjust the seat of the stationary bicycle and the seat cracked off, causing her to fall into the bicycle behind her while still clipped into the pedals.

$65,000 — Legal malpractice for failure to properly perfect a lien with a trustee regarding a land trust

$20,000 — The plaintiff, a young man, was riding a motorcycle to work when suddenly a vehicle tried to turn left in front of him. Our client was thrown through the air upon impact and suffered a fracture to his clavicle and toe, as well as lung contusion and a road rash.

$Confidential – Plaintiff, the insurance company, filed a Declaratory Judgment in Federal Court, in the Northern District of Illinois.  Plaintiff refused to pay Defendant his homeowner’s policy coverage after a house fire and claimed Defendant committed arson and provided false statements to the company during the investigation.  After a jury trial, Defendant was awarded full coverage for the loss.  Plaintiff attempted to have the judgment set aside and sought a new trial, but it was denied by the Court.   To avoid a lengthy 7th Circuit appeal, Defendant agreed to settle for approximately $5,000 less than the judgment amount.

Practice Areas

Personal Injury

Construction Negligence

Nursing Home Negligence

Motor Vehicle Accidents

  • Motorcycle Accidents
  • Truck Accidents
  • Bus Accidents
  • Train Accidents

Premises Liability

  • Dog Bites

Medical Malpractice

  • Failure to Diagnose Cancer

Dental Malpractice

Employment Law
Legal Malpractice




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