A Sample Of Our Successes
Personal Injury Case Results
Motorcyclist hit by tractor trailer, Grant & Grant obtains settlement even after trucking company filed bankruptcy
Grant & Grant obtained a recovery for a client after a serious motorcycle collision. While riding his motorcycle, our client was struck by a tractor trailer that had run a stop sign and our client ended up under the trailer. Our client suffered severe facial injuries and multiple fractures to his pelvis and his leg. While the trucking company was clearly liable, it filed Chapter 11 Bankruptcy in New Jersey shortly after the accident. On behalf of our client, we filed a claim in the bankruptcy proceedings and participated in complex multi-party negotiations of a bankruptcy plan for the distribution of available insurance proceeds. Ultimately, Grant & Grant obtained a settlement of the claim at mediation.
Woman Suffers Back Injuries after Fall at Nail Salon
While at a nail salon for a manicure and pedicure in preparation for her sister’s wedding, our client slipped on water carelessly spilled on the floor. She fell to the floor. The nail salon employees had not removed the water nor warned our client of the dangerous hazard. That night and the next day, she experienced intense pain in her back. Unfortunately, our client had serious preexisting back injuries. While the fall worsened her preexisting pain, she was already undergoing procedures to address her disc issues. In the months following the fall, she underwent two separate disc surgeries. Grant & Grant worked with the client’s neurosurgeon; and while the subsequent injuries could not be directly related to the fall, we were able to demonstrate that it had contributed to the worsening symptoms. Shortly after filing a lawsuit against the nail salon, Grant & Grant obtained a settlement from the nail salon’s insurer.
Victim Injured by Drunk Driver
While stopped at a stop light, our client’s car was struck in the rear at relatively high speed by a drunk driver. Fortunately, our client did not suffer traumatic injuries. However, the drunk driver’s insurance carrier would not settle prior to litigation. Grant & Grant filed suit against the drunk driver and was able to obtain admissions establishing the drunk driver’s liability. The case was settled at mediation for an amount proportional to our client’s injuries.
Tractor Trailer Collision at Tollway
Our client was stopped in his tractor trailer at a tollway in northern Indiana when another large tractor trailer began backing up. Our client had no way to avoid the other reckless driver and was struck in the front end. Fortunately, our client was not seriously injured; however, he had a large business income loss claim because he was unable to work while he was recovering and his tractor was being repaired. The other driver’s insurance carrier was unwilling to negotiate with our client prior to Grant & Grant’s involvement. However, Grant & Grant obtained surveillance footage of the collision to show the clear liability of the other driver and calculated the business income loss using our client’s accounting records. The case settled shortly after a lawsuit was filed.
Civil Litigation Case Results
Grant & Grant defends DIY Will Benefiting Unmarried Same Sex Partner.
Client retained Grant & Grant to probate the do-it-yourself Will of client’s same sex partner after partner’s recent death. The decedent was survived by his siblings who contested the decedent’s Will alleging defective execution of the Will, lack of capacity, fraud, undue influence and duress. The client, as an unmarried beneficiary, did not have certain statutory protections afforded surviving spouses. The Will Contest was tried before a jury and Grant & Grant established that the decedent and client had a long-term relationship and, as such, the client was the natural object of the decedent’s bounty. Further, the evidence established that the decedent was gainfully employed at the time the Will was executed and witnesses to the Will testified as to the capacity of the decedent and circumstances surrounding execution of the Will. The jury returned a verdict in client’s favor in less than an hour.
Grant & Grant Assists Landowner in Recovering Damages Due to Decades-Old Environmental Degradation.
Client/Landowner leased unimproved real estate to a trucking company more than 25 years earlier. The owner of the trucking company personally guaranteed all terms of the lease. During tenant’s occupancy, the tenant sought landowner’s permission to install an underground petroleum storage tank, which permission was granted conditioned upon tenant’s owner assuming all liability arising out of the installation and use of the petroleum storage tank. Approximately 15 years thereafter the trucking company ceased operation and vacated the premises. The landowner re-leased the premises to another trucking company which did not use the underground petroleum storage tank. At the conclusion of second trucking company’s tenancy, the landowner prepared to list the real estate for sale and, in connection thereto, secured an environmental assessment which revealed that the petroleum storage tank had degraded and leaked petroleum into the subsoil and threated a nearby aquafer. Grant & Grant located the owner of the original trucking company and made demand upon the owner for indemnification for the clean-up costs associated with the removal of the tank and remediation of the site. The owner of the defunct trucking company denied liability and suit was filed on behalf of the client/landowner. Neither party requested a trial by jury. Upon plaintiff’s motion, the trial was bifurcated as to liability and damages. After trial on the issue of liability, the court entered judgement in favor of the plaintiff. The parties were unable to settle the damages issue and the parties proceeded to trial on this issue. The court entered a six-figure final judgment in
favor of the plaintiff which judgment included plaintiff’s attorney fees, as provided by statute. The defendant appealed and the Court of Appeals sustained the trial court’s judgment. The defendant appealed to the Indiana Supreme Court which denied the appeal. The client eventually recovered 100% of the judgment.
Grant & Grant Obtains Recovery for Negligent Design of Fire Suppression System
at Apartment Complex
Over a four-year period, an apartment complex had multiple incidents of water damage from frozen and ruptured fire suppression sprinkler pipes. The freezing incidents caused property damage, personal property damage, and displaced tenants. After each incident, the fire suppression system company that designed and installed the system made repairs to the frozen pipes, but denied any negligence in the design of the system. The ownership group for the apartment complex retained Grant & Grant to investigate and pursue the fire suppression company.
Grant & Grant hired a professional engineer with experience in fire suppression system design to investigate the system and determine the cause of the continual freezing. It was ultimately determined that the design of the system did not allow for enough clearance of the fire suppression system piping from the outside. As a result, during freezing temperatures, the water in the interior pipes would freeze. To remedy the defective condition and prevent further freezing, the apartment complex installed a new system throughout all of its units at a significant expense. Thereafter, on behalf of its client Grant & Grant, filed a lawsuit against the fire suppression system company and the general contractor seeking recovery for the water damage. Utilizing the evidence developed through the expert’s investigation, which showed
clear design defects and violation of the Indiana Fire Code, Grant & Grant obtained a settlement at mediation.
Insurance Subrogation Case Results
Recliner Fire Caused by Defective Battery
Grant & Grant was retained by a property and casualty insurer after a fire occurred in its insured’s large suburban home. The homeowner had purchased a battery powered motorized reclining love seat. While the homeowner was absent from the home, a fire ignited in the love seat causing extensive damage to the home. Grant & Grant worked with an electrical engineer to determine the origin and cause of the fire and identify the at fault parties to pursue. The fire originated at or near the lithium ion battery powering the loveseat. However, because there were issues related to the installation, Grant & Grant also pursued the furniture company that installed the love seat. Through discovery, Grant & Grant determined that the lithium ion battery was subject to a recall. To avoid liability for the defective product, the defendants
attempted to shift fault to an overseas manufacturer. Grant & Grant argued that because the love seat had been marketed and held out to the public as a product of the U.S. based company, it was irrelevant where the product was actually manufactured. This case resolved at mediation after Grant & Grant filed a motion for summary judgment on the issue of apparent manufacturer.
Recovery Against Utility Company that Damaged Sewage Line Causing
Grant & Grant was retained by an insurance carrier client to pursue subrogation against a telecommunication company following a sewage back up in the client’s insureds’ home. The insured arrived home after vacation to find sewage water throughout the structure. It was discovered through investigation that nine years prior to the loss, a telecommunication company had bored through the sewage line. Over time, the line collapsed causing the sewage to back up into the home once it could no longer drain. Because of the amount of sewage water, the home was unsafe for habitation, which caused the entire home to be torn down to the studs and rebuilt. Further, for a more than a one-year period, our client’s insured was paying rent to live in another location. Grant & Grant filed suit after receiving the case only one week prior the
statute of limitation running. We were able to identify a Rotor-Rooter plumber, who could testify as a fact witness, but with expert knowledge related to drain line clogs. He had been the plumber at the property immediately following the loss and had identified the location and reason for the clog. In his deposition, he testified that in his experience a damage drain line could take years to clog and back-up. By developing this and other evidence, Grant & Grant obtain a six-figure settlement at mediation.
Lightning Strikes Gas Line and Causes Fire in Condominium
Lightning struck a condominium complex causing a fire in the attic of one of its units and spreading to several others. The client believed the loss to be an act of God, but Grant & Grant insisted that it warranted an investigation. Along with its experts, Grant & Grant identified that the fire originated at the condominium’s gas line, which was corrugated stainless steel tubing (CSST). CSST is well known for susceptibility for fire in the event of a lightning strike. Further, there are specific installation requirements for CSST. After two multiple day inspections, installation errors were identified. The client agreed with Grant & Grant to pursue subrogation against the CSST manufacturer, installer, and several other subcontractors who performed work at or around the CSST. While each Defendant denied liability Grant & Grant was able to develop evidence indicating that each trade in the construction of the condominium had a role in the negligent installation. Further the CSST manufacturer was shown to have fault for selling a dangerously defective product susceptible to failure in normal Indiana weather. Using this evidence and expert testimony, Grant & Grant was able to reach a global settlement with all Defendants favorable to our client.
Grant & Grant obtains recovery from 4th of July boathouse fire
On July 4th, a fire broke out in a boathouse located on lakefront property. The boathouse, its contents, including their boat were destroyed as a result of the fire. Our client insured the property including the boathouse and its contents. The cause of the fire was fireworks being set off in the evening from a separate property on the lake. Several individual property owners and guests were identified as setting off fireworks on that evening. However, all of these individuals denied causing the fire. The homeowner and his insurance company retained Grant & Grant to pursue their damages. On behalf of our clients, Grant & Grant filed suit against all of the putative liable parties. Through depositions and discovery, we were able to narrow down the facts to support liability against one particular defendant. Though this defendant attempted to attribute fault to nonparties and even unknown individuals, the evidence developed supported that this one defendant was more likely than not the one who had negligently set off the particular firework that struck the boathouse and caused the fire. Grant & Grant settled the case shortly before trial for the limits of that defendant’s insurance policy.