Verdicts and Settlements:
$300,000 Settlement Obtained Just Prior To Opening Arguments At Trial
Mr. Sitinas represented a 33 year old woman who was struck by a flat-bed tow truck while she was crossing a busy intersection in the Bronx. The accident occurred on May 21, 2007 at the intersection of White Plains Road and Pelham Parkway in the Bronx.
Our client claimed she was crossing within the crosswalk when the flat-bed tow truck made a right turn onto Pelham Parkway from White Plains Road. She states she was struck by the front of the truck, which then passed over her. She suffered pelvic fractures which luckily did not require surgical repair.
The defendants argued that the tow truck operator was not to blame. He testified that he waited until pedestrian traffic had cleared before proceeding with his turn. He also testified that he never saw the plaintiff until she was lying in the roadway- outside the crosswalk. Therefore, the tow truck driver claimed our client was to blame for walking into the side of his turning truck. He also claims that the client’s cell phone records indicated she was speaking on her phone at the time of the accident and must have been distracted.
An independent eye witness also claims he saw our client crossing the intersection well outside the crosswalk.
As the case proceeded to trial, a jury was selected, a judge was assigned and the attorneys were about to present their opening arguments to the jury when the defense made one last try at settlement, offering $300,000 to avoid trial. Considering the differing accounts and eye witness testimony, the client decided to avoid a contentious trial by accepting this settlement. It should be noted that prior to this offer, the amount being offered was substantially less. Clearly, the insurance company wanted to see if, in fact, the plaintiff was prepared to proceed with the trial. Once they realized she and her attorney were more than willing to try this case before the jury, they offered a significant settlement.