When the dad of a 13 year old boy agreed to let him go on vacation with his son’s friend’s family to Dale Hollow Lake in Tennessee he thought he would be properly supervised. Unfortunately, the resort they were staying at allowed the families to rent jet ski’s without showing them safety training videos and did not require riders to sign disclosures limiting riders to appropriate ages. The parents who were in charge let 3 kids under the age of 13 to ride jet ski’s unsupervised. That’s when one of the children lost control of her jet ski and ran into our 13 year old client, causing very serious injuries. Because we felt the resort was partially responsible, we brought a law suit in Picket County, Tennessee, where we sued the supervising parents and the resort. Just before jury selection the insurance companies agreed to settle the case for a total of $1,317,000. After we placed the settlement on the record in open court, the presiding judge told us this was the largest settlement that has ever occurred in Picket County. This case was handled by trial attorney Brian Acard and managing attorney David Gross.
Having won hundreds of thousands of personal injury cases, our experience is proven. In the past fifty years Finkelstein & Partners has obtained verdicts or settlements with awards ranging from $500 thousand to $34 million. While we have established our reputation as the law firm to retain when seeking top-dollar verdicts or settlements from insurance companies, your satisfaction is our primary goal.
Now in our fifth decade of providing client representation and service, we remain dedicated as ever to fighting for and winning the money you deserve from insurance companies or other responsible parties, while preserving your dignity and privacy.
Please read on for a selection of recent cases of note.*
When a 65 year old Dutchess County resident was driving in Connecticut he never thought he would end up in a Danbury Connecticut hospital for 3 weeks. Unfortunately that is what happened after a lone drunk driver crossed over a double yellow line and struck him head on. Our client nearly died and required multiple surgeries for several broken bones. The drunk driver did die in the crash. We attempted to recreate where the drunk driver had come from so we can hold the server of the alcohol responsible. Unfortunately, there was no digital foot print left by the drunk driver as he did not have a cell phone. No bar within a 25 mile radius had any credit card receipts for him. It remains a mystery where the drunk driver was before the crash. Our client wanted to put this behind him and accepted the full amount of insurance available ($1,250,000) on the car that struck him. The case was settled by our Connecticut lawyer, Ken Bartlett.
The Hoboken Path train station is a busy place during rush hour. Everyone knows this, especially the Port Authority. When Port authority found a hole at the bottom of a stairway, rather than fix it, they put a thin metal plate over the hole without securing to the ground. When our client stepped on it, the metal plate slipped out causing him to fall on to both knees, tearing the quadriceps in both legs. Multiple surgeries were required and our client now requires a cane to walk. Had the Port Authority properly secured the metal plate, the fall never would have happened. The Port Authority agreed to settle the case just before jury selection for $1,625,000. Case was handled by partners Andrew Finkelstein and David Gross.
Andrew G. Finkelstein, managing partner, and firm partner Kenneth Fromson, obtained a settlement of $12,750,000 for our injured client on the day the jury was to be selected. Our client, a 49 year old truck driver for a retail auto supply store, sustained broken bones in both feet when he stepped off an unprotected edge and fell 10 feet to the warehouse floor while making a delivery.
As a result of the store being built into the side of a hill, the warehouse, at the rear of the store, is located 10 feet below grade. When making deliveries trucks park against the delivery dock door and the drivers utilize a vertical lift to access the warehouse floor 10 feet below. The elevator-like lift has a safety gate that may only be opened at delivery dock level in order to protect workers from falling. Tragically, the store is known to disable and even remove the safety gate to speed up deliveries - as was the case when our client stepped off the unprotected edge when neither the lift nor the protective safety gate were in place at loading dock level.
"Workers have the right to expect a safe work environment," said Finkelstein. "Unfortunately, when that right is violated and conditions are unsafe people get hurt and their lives can be changed forever. When that happens, we strive to hold employers accountable and fight for the rights of our clients."
The resulting broken bones from the fall to the warehouse floor required surgery. Following surgery, the worker developed gangrene in one foot which ultimately required an amputation below the knee. Today he uses a prosthetic device and faces additional surgery on his surviving foot.
"Our client did not expect to have his life permanently altered by an unsafe work place when he went to work that day," said Fromson. "We helped him navigate the complex legal system and held the auto supply store accountable when they failed to uphold a safe work place for all employees."
The retailer settled for $12,750,000 at jury selection, avoiding taking the case to court.
Our client, a Rockland County motorcyclist, was on his way to a work appointment in Ramsey, New Jersey when he was seriously hurt in a motorcycle crash. Another driver switched lanes without looking and crashed into his motorcycle. Our client was removed from the scene by ambulance. He underwent emergency surgery on his ankle, which was shattered in the crash. He also sustained serious lacerations that required stitches and suffered from painful road rash. Other issues, including wound infections, required further surgery. 18 months post accident he had a picc line inserted to deliver antibiotics to his wounds which still were not healing. Prior to the crash our client was an avid hiker, unfortunately his injuries dramatically curtailed his ability to continue and enjoy his favorite recreational activities. His injuries are permanent and will probably cause him pain for the rest of his life, getting worse as he ages. His Finkelstein and Partner’s attorneys assisted him in filing a workers’ compensation claim and were able to successfully settle his case before trial at arbitration.
After getting a pedicure at a nail salon in a shopping mall in the Hudson Valley, our client developed a bacterial infection requiring the surgical removal of a portion of her foot. While we knew it was from the nail salon, we had to prove it. We hired an instructor from a beauty school who regularly lectures on what nail salons must do to comply with the NYS Appearance Enhancement Law. She told us how the nail salon violated several sections of the law. We also hired a bio-chemist who analyzed the type of bacteria and confirmed it was consistent with the type of bacteria that is found in dirty nail salon equipment. While the nail salon lawyer attempted to point to other causes, our client was satisfied with the $850,000 settlement offer from the insurance company.
While installing fiber optic cable in the Hudson Valley, the contractor failed to properly secure a trailer that was used to hold the spools of cable before unhitching the trailer. Nearly a ton of weight fell on our client's foot, crushing his ankle. The contractor refused to accept any responsibility even though someone else was hurt in a similar way before. Finkelstein & Partners successfully sued the contractor with a Judge finding them 100% responsible for this preventable gravity related event. The Judge agreed had the contractor used basic cribbing to support the trailer before unhitching it, this event never would have happened. Ultimately, just before trial, an offer of $1,500,000 was accepted by our client.
A Hudson Valley nursing home and their food delivery service company was held accountable for ignoring clear doctor’s orders to provide only soft food to a resident due to the resident's disability. We discovered during our lawsuit that the doctor’s orders were clearly given to both the nursing home and the food service company but neither had sufficient protocols and systems in place to ensure the doctor’s orders were in fact followed. Shockingly, our client was served a hard-boiled egg which caused her to choke to death. This was precisely what the doctor feared and was completely preventable. Our clients family brought this lawsuit to make sure this does not happen to other nursing home residents. They are satisfied that the $2,250,000 will awaken the nursing home administration and change their ways.
Lawyer Turns to Finkelstein & Partners to Help Client
When a Hudson Valley lawyers client told him he fell from a ladder when he was building the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, he turned to Finkelstein & Partners for help. We quickly filed a claim against the owners of the Barclays Center, as well as the general contractor on the job. New York construction law requires owners and general contractors provide fall protection for workers exposed to height related injuries. Had our client been provided a mobile scissor lift for the job he would not have fallen 15 feet and broken his big toe. The break was so significant he required surgery to repair the bones. Unfortunately he developed traumatic arthritis which prevented him from returning to his job. The case was settled for $1,800,000 by Andrew Finkelstein.
This case arises from a labor law violation regarding a fall from a ladder. Our client, a 57 year old Pennsylvania man, was checking for a water leak at a laboratory that was undergoing a gut renovation. He was working alone, and had to move his ladder several times to determine the source of the leak. He was on the fourth rung of the ladder with his head inside the dropped ceiling when the ladder gave way, causing him to drop to the ground. He hit a table on the way down and landed on his shoulder.
Our client suffered right and left rotator cuff tears, both of which required surgery to repair. workers’ compensation determined he had 32.5% loss of use of his left arm and 45% loss of use of his right arm and he is permanently disabled to a moderate degree.
His Finkelstein & Partners attorney obtained an $800,000 award at mediation.