All Firm Results

REPRESENTATIVE VERDICTS & SETTLEMENTS

Where the amount is blank, the settlement amount is CONFIDENTIAL at the Defendants' request.

$______________
Fraud / Accounting Malpractice / Breach of Fiduciary Duty
Confidential Cash Settlement - 1/6/2014. Christopher Cohan, et al v. KPMG LLP, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Plaintiff Christopher Cohan owned a very successful cable company. When he began to consider selling the company, his longtime accountants and auditors, KPMG, told him that they could structure any sale to minimize the income taxes Cohan would owe on the profits. KPMG told Cohan their strategy would provide a permanent tax savings, and Cohan believed them. KPMG concealed from Cohan that their strategy was actually a series of fraudulent tax shelters designed to generate bogus losses, and that KPMG knew the shelters would not survive IRS scrutiny. The IRS did investigate Cohan, and, as a result of KPMG's misrepresentations and fraudulent conduct, Cohan had to pay over $200 million in taxes, penalties, interest and fees - more than the profits he received from the sale in the first place. Cohan also lost his company, which by 2013 would have been worth some $220 million more than it sold for in 1998. Plaintiffs sued KPMG for fraud, professional negligence, breach of fiduciary duty, and breach of contract. Plaintiffs sought nearly $500 million in damages. While the settlement amount is confidential at KPMG's insistence, Plaintiffs and their counsel were very pleased with the settlement. Plaintiffs successfully defeated two motions to dismiss and a motion for summary judgment. Plaintiffs also won a court Order directing KPMG to produce documents KPMG had concealed, and another court Order allowing Plaintiffs to take the trial deposition of a former KPMG expert witness who had defended the KPMG tax strategies in 14 prior cases. That witness testified that KPMG had deceived him and concealed from him internal KPMG documents that revealed KPMG knew its tax strategies were fraudulent. KPMG settled the case just a week before trial, on the morning when the Court was scheduled to rule upon motions in limine and one day before Plaintiffs were set to take the videotaped deposition for use at trial of KPMG's "Vice Chairman - Legal," a former federal judge.

$2,512,600

Wrongful Death

Verdict - 12/13/2013. Humphrey v. Brilansie Enterprises, Inc., et al, State Court of Troup County, Georgia. Plaintiffs were the father and estate administrator of a 63-year-old woman who was killed while being transported on a stretcher in a van in LaGrange, Georgia. The minivan was involved in a head-on collision, and Mary Humphrey was ejected from the stretcher, striking her head on the driver's seat and dashboard. At trial, Plaintiffs proved that stretcher was designed to be used with shoulder straps, but that the non-emergency transportation (NET) provider (Brilansie Enterprises) and broker (Southeastrans, Inc.) failed to ensure the straps were present. The shoulder harness would have saved Ms. Humphrey's life. This was one of the largest verdicts in Troup County history and extremely rewarding given that Ms. Humphrey suffered from a myriad of health problems, was not married, and had no children at the time of her death.
$______________
Products Liability / Auto

Cash Settlement - 10/2/2013. Linda Hatfield, et al. v. Ford Motor Company, et al., State Court of Bibb County, Georgia. As Mrs. Hatfield and her family drove down Interstate 16 in a 2002 Mercury Grand Marquis, a tractor-trailer merged into their lane struck the car in the rear. The car was forced off the road, then it rolled over. Tragically, Ford Motor Company had manufactured the car with a defectively weak roof. When the roof hit the ground, the portion over Mrs. Hatfield caved in and struck her in the head, forcing her head forward and down. The collapsing roof broke her neck, leaving Mrs. Hatfield paralyzed from the neck down. On behalf of Mrs. Hatfield and her husband, we filed suit against the trucking company and Ford Motor Company. We took the case all the way through trial, completing a 2.5-week trial on October 2. When the jury announced that it had reached a verdict, but before the jury could announce what the verdict was, Ford made an offer to settle the case. The Hatfield family accepted. The amount of the settlement is confidential.

$______________

Worksite Accident /
Wrongful Death

Confidential Cash Settlement at the Request of the Defendants - 11/30/2012. Tony Cruse v. Unnamed Defendants. A 45 year-old underground miner was killed when a large boulder detached from the ceiling of the mine, crushing him and his equipment. The mining company was on notice of unsafe conditions, because a boulder had fallen in a nearby area two months prior, and an mining engineer inspected the mine and alerted the mining company to the dangers. The engineer failed, however, to recommend that mining be discontinued in the hazardous area. The firm filed suit against the mining company as well as the engineer for their independent acts of negligence, collecting from each party in settlement. The firm defeated a summary judgment motion by the mining engineer in which the engineer alleged he owed no duty to the deceased. The firm was further able to obtain a settlement from the mining company notwithstanding their argument that they were entitled to the workers' compensation bar.

$5,300,000

Tractor Trailer

Cash Settlement – 6/2013. Unnamed Plaintiff v. Unnamed Defendants. Injuries to driver of automobile who was hit by a tractor trailer truck. Other information about this case is confidential at the request of defendants.

$161,700,000

Fraud/Qui Tam

(Whistleblower)

Cash Settlement - 11/19/2012. United States of America ex rel. Victor Bibby and Brian Donnelly v. JPMorgan Chase, et al. U.S. District Court, Northern District of Georgia, Atlanta Division. Six banks have settled claims under the False Claims Act brought by two whistleblowers for recovery of money on behalf of the U.S. Government. The banks which have agreed to settle are JPMorgan Chase ($45 million), Countrywide Home Loans, Inc. ($45 million), PNC Bank ($38 million), First Tennessee Bank ($16 million), SunTrust Mortgage ($10.2 million), and CitiMortgage ($7.5 million). The case alleges that eight banks cheated military veterans and taxpayers out of millions of dollars by hiding illegal fees in veterans' home mortgage refinancing transactions and then sought to collect on void government loan guarantees. The case is still pending against Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. and Mortgage Investors Corporation-the biggest defendants with 70% of the total damages exposure.

$______________

Business Torts/

Civil RICO/Statutory

Violations of Motor Vehicle Franchise and Dealers Acts

Cash Settlement - 07/06/2012. Jay Auto Group, Inc. v. American Suzuki Motor Corporation, U.S. District Court, Middle District of Georgia, Columbus Division. Plaintiff-franchisee alleged that Defendant did not use good faith in its business dealings with Plaintiff, negligently and/or fraudulently misrepresented sales numbers of other Suzuki dealerships to induce Plaintiff's continued investments in the Franchise, and discriminated in the allocation of vehicles in violation of its contractual and statutory duties. After Plaintiff successfully defended against Defendant's Motion to Dismiss and discovery commenced, the case settled for a confidential amount.

$______________

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 07/05/2012. James E. Glover, et al. v. Southwest Georgia Regional Commission, et al. State Court of Dougherty County, Georgia. On September 10, 2010, Nancy Glover was killed when the driver of the vehicle in which she was a passenger blew a tire and lost control of the vehicle. The driver was transporting Mrs. Glover and her seven-year-old great-niece on behalf of the Southwest Georgia Regional Commission ("SWGRC") and ZoneCare, both of which had contracts to drive non-emergency transportation patients to medical appointments. The SWGRC, which had provided hundreds of thousands of such trips for eligible Georgians, failed to adequately inspect the vehicle and screen the driver responsible for transporting Mrs. Glover and her great-niece safely across the state. The driver-who had equipped his vehicle with used, bald tires and was traveling in excess of the posted speed limit-had more than thirty prior tickets for traffic offenses. While some of the settlement amounts are confidential, the Southwest Georgia Regional Commission ("SWGRC") alone paid $1.75 million to satisfy the claims made against it. The case settled while on an interlocutory appeal.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Defective Tire

Cash Settlement - 03/30/2012. Johnny and Patricia Bates v. Michelin North America, Inc., U.S. District Court, Northern District of Georgia, Atlanta Division. On Christmas day 2008, Mr. Bates was paralyzed and suffered a brain injury when a Uniroyal Laredo tire manufactured by Michelin suffered a tread separation and came apart, causing the vehicle to go out of control and roll over. Plaintiffs alleged the tire contained numerous design and manufacturing defects, including the absence of a nylon cap. The case was plagued by Michelin's unrelenting and unrepentant discovery abuse leading to a meticulously detailed and documented 60-page order issued by Judge Totenberg finding that Michelin had "engaged in a pattern of subterfuge and withholding relevant and responsive documents," "acted willfully in violating the Court's discovery orders," and "engaged in a pattern of prejudicial discovery abuse ...throughout the course of this litigation." The Court held these serial abuses warranted the substantive sanction of issue preclusion. The case settled for a confidential amount.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Defective Tire

Cash Settlement - 3/21/2012. Leonard and Randall Heavrin v. Bridgestone/Firestone, et al. State Court of Walker County, Georgia. On November 10, 2005 Leonard and Nancy Heavrin were killed when a Firestone Steeltex Radial R4S II tire on another vehicle suffered a belt/tread separation, causing the vehicle to go out of control, cross the median and strike the Heavrin vehicle head-on, decapitating both Mr. and Mrs. Heavrin, who were on their way to visit family members in Florida. The Firestone Steeltex tires at issue were manufactured at Firestone's now-closed Decatur, Illinois plant. Other tires manufactured at the Decatur, Illinois plant were recalled by Firestone and the plant was shut down shortly after the tire at issue was manufactured due to quality problems. In addition to manufacturing defects, one of the design defects claimed by Plaintiffs was Bridgestone/Firestone's failure to include a nylon cap in the design of the tire. The case settled for a confidential amount.

$45,000,000

Fraud/Qui Tam

(Whistleblower)

Cash Settlement - 3/13/2012. United States of America, ex rel, Victor Bibby and Brian Donnelly v. JPMorgan Chase, et al. U.S. District Court, Northern District of Georgia, Atlanta Division. JPMorgan Chase is the first to settle claims brought against eight banks under the False Claims Act by two whistleblowers for recovery of money on behalf of the U.S. Government. The case alleges that JPMorgan Chase, and the other banks, cheated military veterans and taxpayers out of millions of dollars by hiding illegal fees in veterans' home mortgage refinancing transactions and then seeking to collect on void government loan guarantees. The case is still pending against several other defendants.

$_____________

Large Truck/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 11/29/2011. Ronald Leon Morris, et al. v. Georgia Carolina Truck Parts, LLC and Junior Alfred Lee, Superior Court of Stephens County, Georgia. Leon Morris was an employee with Penske Truck Leasing. He was responsible for intra-company transfers of trucks to make them available to customers in different locations. On December 10, 2009, Mr. Morris drove a truck to Toccoa, Georgia where Penske occupied a portion of Georgia Carolina Truck Parts' parking lot to park its trucks and operate its business. Mr. Morris was in the process of inspecting the undercarriage of a Penske truck when suddenly, and without warning, another person entered the driver's seat of the truck and proceeded to drive the truck forward resulting in the back left tires of the truck rolling over Mr. Morris. This resulted in significant injuries to Mr. Morris and ultimately to his death. The amount of the settlement is confidential at the request of Defendants.

$_____________

Tractor-Trailer/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 10/05/2011. Parrish, et al. v. P & J Trucking, Inc., G and H Logging Co., Inc., et al., State Court of Ware County, Georgia. On April 29, 2010, Ms. Elizabeth Parrish was headed home from a Sunday School dinner party traveling on Corridor Z eastbound toward Waycross, Georgia. As Ms. Parrish crested a hill, a fully loaded logging truck pulled out in front of Ms. Parrish. The driver had been on the job over 14 hours and had just re-fueled at a station in this same area. Although Ms. Parrish attempted to avoid hitting the truck she couldn't stop in time and the logs on the trailer slammed through the front windshield. The logging truck was in violation of the law due to adequate reflective tape and a required strobe lamp. Without the proper reflective tape and functioning strobe light, the tractor-trailer was virtually impossible for Ms. Parrish to see in time to avoid the collision. Plaintiffs were able to obtain the video surveillance from the station which indisputably proved the strobe light was not functioning prior to the collision. Ms. Parrish ultimately died from the injuries she sustained.

$_____________

Tractor-Trailer/

Personal Injury

Cash Settlement - 09/08/2011. Thomas Gerald Bryant v. Lexington Ins. Co., National Union Fire Ins. Co. of Pittsburg, SNL Distribution Corp and J.W. Brooks. On the morning of March 26, 2011, Thomas Bryant was driving a contained truck and Defendant J.W. Brooks was driving a SNL tractor-trailer; both heading southbound on Interstate 85 in Troup County, Georgia. Suddenly and without warning Defendant Brooks slammed his fully loaded tractor-trailer into the rear of Mr. Bryant's contained truck. Defendant Brooks had been weaving back and forth and apparently fell asleep at the wheel. The force of the collision was severe, causing Mr. Bryant's truck to roll over, trapping Mr. Bryant's head and face between the frame of the truck and the ground. The case settled prior to suit being filed in the Superior Court of Muscogee County, Georgia

$8,000,000

Tractor-Trailer/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 08/12/2011. Perlotte, et al. v. Harrison Poultry et al., Superior Court of Oglethorpe County, Georgia. On October 15, 2009, an employee of Harrison Poultry was driving a Harrison Poultry tractor-trailer on Georgia Highway 10 in Oglethorpe County. The tractor-trailer drove into the rear of a pick-up truck. The force of the collision threw both the pick-up truck and the tractor-trailer into the oncoming lanes of traffic. All three men in the pick-up were killed in the collision. The Georgia State Patrol found 4 of the 6 brakes on the tractor were out of adjustment and unsafe to be on the road. Less than two months after the lawsuit was filed, the Defendants settled.

$_____________

Heavy Equipment/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 07/21/2011. Bonita Arnold on behalf of Robert Arnold v. Lowndes County, Georgia and William Carley Lane, Superior Court of Lowndes County, Georgia. Robert Arnold was fatally injured when a Lowndes County motor grader pulled into the path of his Freightliner logging truck. The collision caused the logging truck to catch fire. Mr. Arnold was trapped in his truck. The people on the scene were unable to open the door on the truck and Mr. Arnold burned to death. The amount of the settlement is confidential at the Defendants' request.

$_____________

Product Liability/ Auto/ Defective

Brake Shift Interlock/ Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 07/19/2011. Eric Hinton and Tamika Jones on behalf of Gabriel Hinton v. General Motors, LLC, et al., Superior Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Gabriel Hinton died when the defective brake shift interlock on a 2003 Suburban allowed the gear shift to be engaged and roll backward. When the Suburban rolled backward Gabriel was pinned between a hot grill and the Suburban. Gabriel ultimately died of compressional asphyxia and thermal burns from being trapped and crushed between the vehicle and the grill. The amount of settlement is confidential at the request of the Defendants.

$_____________

Tractor-Trailer/ Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 07/05/2011. Linda Croy, et al. v. Reece Logging, Inc., Jackie L. Blackwell, and FCCI Insurance Company, Superior Court of Dawson County, Georgia. On April 10, 2008 Felicia Croy suffered a fatal injury when the 1995 GM pickup truck she was driving was violently hit by a Reece Logging truck. The driver of the logging truck crossed over the centerline of a 2-lane roadway, lost control, flipped the truck on its side and skidded, trailer and logs first, into Ms. Croy's vehicle. The driver was charged with DUI, 1 st degree vehicular homicide and driving without a license among other charges. The amount of the settlement is confidential at the request of the Defendants.

$_____________

Tractor-Trailer/ Personal Injury

Cash Settlement - 04/21/2011. Susan Hust v. Ronnie Dowdy, Inc., National Specialty Ins. Co., and Ralph Picardo, U. S. District Court, Southern District of Georgia, Augusta, Georgia. On October 30, 2010, Susan Hust was awakened from sleep when an 18-wheeler tractor-trailer crashed through her apartment into her bedroom and pinned her against the wall. Ms. Hust suffered a broken back and neck. The case settled on a policy limits demand and is confidential at the Defendants' request.

$_____________

Product Liability/

Auto/Defective Roof/ Quadriplegia

Cash Settlement - 02/23/2011. William Henry Hardee v. Motor Liquidation Corp, et al. [General Motors], U. S. Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York. On June 11, 2009, 19 year-old William Hardee was driving a 1995 Chevrolet S-10 pickup with a passenger. Another vehicle ran a stop sign, struck the S-10 pickup causing the vehicle to go out of control and roll over. The driver's side roof crushed. William suffered injuries resulting in quadriplegia while the passenger (whose roof space did not crush) was basically un-injured. BWF understands that the settlement of this case was the largest settlement of any bankruptcy-related claim.

$_____________

Product Liability/

Auto/Defective Air Bag/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 01/27/2011. Hasaya Chansuthus, et al. v. General Motors, LLC, Circuit Court, Rutherford County, at Murfreesboro, Tennessee. On December 31, 2009 the Plaintiff was driving her 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt when she lost control of her vehicle and struck a tree. In the impact, Plaintiff's head struck the steering wheel and she died from blunt head trauma from the impact. Despite the severity of the impact, the frontal air bags and pretensioners did not deploy. A properly working occupant restraint system would have prevented her injuries. Plaintiff died on the scene.

$_____________

Product Liability/

Auto/Defective

Air Bag

Cash Settlement - 12/17/2010. Kristy Williams v. Honda, et al., State Court of Clayton County , Georgia. On April 2, 2010, at around 2:30 p.m., Kristy Williams was the driver of a 2001 Honda Civic. Ms. Williams was stopped at a red light on Jonesboro Road in Morrow, Clayton County, Georgia. Without any impact or other known triggering event, both driver and passenger frontal air bags deployed while the vehicle was stopped at the red light. When the driver's side frontal air bag deployed, pieces of metal were propelled through the fabric of the air bag cushion as the air bag inflator exploded and ruptured. These pieces of shrapnel struck Kristy Williams in the neck and severed her carotid artery. Our Firm filed a lawsuit against Honda, Takata and other defendants on Kristy's behalf. Prior to trial, Honda and Takata settled the case for a confidential amount.

$ 47,750,000

Nationwide

Class Action

Cash Settlement - 11/22/10. Buckner v. Resource Life Insurance Co., Superior Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Plaintiff Dorothy Buckner brought this class action on behalf of herself and a group of Resource Life insureds who did not receive a refund of their unearned credit insurance premiums when they paid off their insured car loans early. Defendant Resource Life contended that language in its credit insurance contract meant that it had no obligation to refund its insureds' unearned credit insurance premiums unless and until its insureds wrote it and requested a refund. Plaintiff's counsel prevailed on that key issue and established that the Defendant had no right to keep its insureds' money. A Class was thereafter certified by the Superior Court of Muscogee County, Georgia.

During discovery, Plaintiff's counsel learned that Resource Life was concealing important evidence it had previously told both the Court and Plaintiff's counsel it did not have. Plaintiff's counsels' determination to find this hidden evidence and resulted in what is believed to be the largest sanction in Georgia history being entered against Resource Life for misconduct and discovery abuse. The trial court's orders granting that sanction and certifying a class action were upheld by a unanimous panel of the Georgia Court of Appeals.


Resource Life paid $47,750,000 into a Settlement Fund to settle the case. The Settlement provides that Settlement Class Members have the opportunity to receive the unearned credit insurance premiums they are owed by Resource Life.

$ 49,195,184 _

Nationwide

Class Action

Common Fund Recovery For Settlement Class Members - 11/15/10. Parker v. Life Investors Ins. Co. of Am., Superior Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. This case involved the failure of Defendant Life Investors Ins. Co. to refund unearned credit insurance premiums to its insureds who had paid off their insured automobile loans early. As part of the Settlement of this case and a similar class action proceeding in Hennepin County, Minnesota, Life Investors agreed to issue a full refund to every insured identified in discovery as having paid off their insured loans early. That amount alone resulted in over $14,000,000 being paid directly to Settlement Class Members.

The settlement, reached after 7 years of litigation, required Life Investors to utilize an enhanced claims made process to pay refunds to insureds who submit proof that they paid off their insured loans early. Even those insureds who are unable to produce proof of early termination will receive $100 by declaring their loans were paid off early. A judge presiding over this case commented this was "the best class action settlement I've seen in 20 years."

$_____________

Nursing Home Negligence/

Wrongful Death/

Cash Settlement - 1/28/10. Thomas v. Pine Manor Nursing Home, Inc., Omni H.C., Inc., Pine Realty Co., Columbus Professional Health Services, Inc., Omni Health Care Ltd., Wilson, Christian, Williams, and Stat Medical Services, Inc., Superior Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. The sons of Henry Thomas, Sr. brought suit after their father died while a patient at Pine Manor Nursing Home in Columbus, Georgia. During discovery, Plaintiffs' counsel learned that Mr. Thomas was on fall restrictions and was not to be left standing unattended. Despite those fall restrictions, Mr. Thomas was left standing unattended over a toilet, at which time he fell and broke his neck. Instead of stabilizing Mr. Thomas' neck and calling 911, the Defendants' employees manipulated Mr. Thomas' neck, picked him up, and moved him to his bed. Mr. Thomas died a short time late from his injuries.

Pine Manor Nursing Home disputed liability and contended that it lacked available insurance to compensate Mr. Thomas' children for their fathers' senseless death. Plaintiffs' counsel established that the nursing home's owner had hidden its assets in an attempt to make it judgment proof. Plaintiffs' counsel pursued the owner and his related companies to obtain compensation for their clients. Plaintiffs amassed so much evidence of fraud and commingling of corporate and personal assets that the Defendants stipulated that the owner and each of his companies would be jointly liable for Mr. Thomas' death.

The case settled for a confidential amount on the eve of trial with all Defendants being required to compensate Mr. Thomas' children for his wrongful death.

$17,716,401

Product Liability/

Auto/Rear Restraint

System/Lap Only Belt

Verdict - 12/18/2009. Lynn and Douglas Wheeler v. Ford Motor Company, et al., State Court of Clayton County, Georgia. Plaintiffs Lynn and Douglas Wheeler won their design defect and failure to warn claims against Ford Motor Company relating to the 2002 Ford Explorer. On Christmas morning 2005, 58 year old Lynn Wheeler was on her way to church with her family. She was seated in the rear center seat of her son's 2002 Ford Explorer, wearing the lap-only seat belt Ford installed for that seating position. Two of Lynn Wheeler's grandchildren were in child seats on either side of her. As they entered a curve a 2-door Eagle Talon coupe driven by John C. Stanley crossed the centerline and struck the Explorer head-on.

In the crash, the latch on the Explorer rear bench seat broke and the seat collapsed and folded down and forward. The lap-only seat belt allowed Ms. Wheeler to jackknife over and strike her head on the back of the front seat. As a result, she suffered a catastrophic spinal cord injury that left her quadriplegic.

Mr. Stanley admitted responsibility for the crash. Ford denied all responsibility. At trial, plaintiffs proved Ford knew, from Fords own crash tests and internal documents, that its rear center seats and restraint systems were failing and endangering passengers. Plaintiffs proved Ford planned to install a safer design including a three-point belt instead of a lap only belt -- in the 2002 Explorer but decided to delay that design to a later model year.

At the conclusion of trial, the jury awarded $17,716,401 to Lynn Wheeler and her husband. The jury separately found that Ford's conduct showed reckless disregard for safety and decided to award additional punitive damages against Ford. After a second phase of trial, while the jury was out deciding what amount of punitive damages to award, Ford settled the case. The amount of the settlement is confidential at Defendant's request.

$_____________

Product Liability/

Auto/Defective

Rear Structure/

Crashworthiness/

Cash Settlement - 12/17/2009. Crystal Brazelton v. General Motors, et al., State Court of Cobb County, Georgia. Crystal Brazelton was on her way to church in North Georgia with her mother on the morning of March 21, 2004. She was driving her 1997 Pontiac Grand Prix. When she stopped to make a left turn, a young man named Amos Huskey rear-ended her with his Ford Mustang. Upon impact, the rear structure of the Grand Prix failed and collapsed, allowing the Mustang and the crushing structure of the Grand Prix to intrude and strike Ms. Brazelton's driver's seat. While neither Mr. Huskey nor Crystal Brazelton's mother sustained any serious injury in this crash, Crystal Brazelton suffered a fractured spine and paraplegia as a result of the structural collapse of her vehicle. Our Firm filed a lawsuit against General Motors on Crystal's behalf. Prior to trial, GM settled the case for a confidential amount.

$4,000,000

Tractor-Trailer/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 11/2009. Unnamed Plaintiff v. Unnamed Defendants. The Plaintiff was killed when a truck driver ran a red light and hit the Plaintiff's vehicle. The driver and employer initially claimed the truck had a braking problem which made stopping at the red light impossible. Our firm proved through eyewitnesses (some of whom we found and who were unknown to law enforcement) and through our expert witness investigation that the brake failure "defense" was false. Through our discovery, we also identified multiple violations of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations by the employer which supported negligent hiring and negligent entrustment claims. The identities of the parties and all other information have been kept confidential at the insistence of the defendants.

$ 5,470,000

Wrongful Death

Verdict - 10/23/09. Pitts v. A&G Trucking. Inc., et al., State Court of DeKalb County, Georgia . Plaintiffs, four minor children, recovered for the death of their father, who was killed by a dump truck driver while the decedent was working as a "spotter" or "flag man" on the runway expansion at Hartsfield Jackson Atlanta International Airport. According to eye-witnesses, the driver of the dump truck was talking on her cell phone or CB radio and was given a stop signal by the deceased. Although she initially obeyed the stop signal, the driver then negligently began backing up without receiving any other signals, running over the decedent. Defendants contended that the decedent had himself violated a workplace rule by turning his back and walking behind the dump truck driver while she was backing her truck. The jury found in favor of the Plaintiff.

$_____________

Product Liability/

Auto/Defective

Air Bag/

Quadriplegia

Cash Settlement - 4/9/2009. Beck and Beck v. General Motors, et al., Superior Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Plaintiffs Mr. and Mrs. Beck brought suit against General Motors and Tucker after Ms. Tucker ran a red light and drove into the path of a 2000 GMC 1500 pickup truck being driven by Mr. Beck. During the frontal collision, Mr. Beck's airbag system failed to deploy, allowing his head to come into contact with the interior of the vehicle and rendering him quadriplegic. During discovery, Plaintiffs discovered that the airbag system in Mr. Beck's GMC pickup contained an anomaly that made it prone to fail in frontal collisions. GM thereafter settled the case for a confidential sum prior to trial. This settlement will assist in providing Mr. Beck the care he needs for the remainder of his life. It also compensated Mr. Beck's wife for her loss of consortium.

$1,325,000

Wrongful Death/

Car Wreck

Cash Settlement - 12/5/08. Plaintiffs v. Defendant, Superior Court of Elbert County, Georgia. On January 31, 2008, an individual Defendant struck another vehicle head on and killed the Plaintiff who was a front seated passenger in the other vehicle. The Defendant alleged that the driver of the vehicle in which the decedent was a passenger actually caused the wreck by swerving into his lane. Our firm was able to prove through physical evidence at the scene that the vehicle in which the Plaintiff was a passenger had swerved into the Defendant's lane in an effort to avoid the Defendant who had initially been in the wrong lane. Our firm recovered all of the available insurance limits in the case.

$49,000,000

Credit Insurance/

Consumer Rights Class Action

Cash Settlement - 10/20/08. Pierce v. Universal

Underwriters Life Insurance Company, Muscogee County Superior Court of Georgia. Butler, Wooten & Fryhofer, LLP served as class counsel in a $49 million settlement which was finally approved by Judge Doug Pullen on October 20, 2008. The case was certified as a class action on March 5, 2007, and preliminarily approved on March 14, 2008. In keeping with this firm's precedent-setting settlement in Toole v. J.M.I.C., the Pierce settlement provided for the Court to approve $49 million to be paid into a Court-supervised trust fund to pay premium refunds due to those class members who could be located, costs of administration, and attorneys' fees as determined by the Court. The settlement is supervised by the Court and Class settlement Counsel, who are working with an established administration firm to pro-actively seek out and to try to determine the identity and mailing addresses of each class member due a refund.

Plaintiff Pierce represented a class of people who prepaid insurance premiums to Universal Underwriters Life Insurance Company (UULIC) for credit life and credit disability insurance policies when they purchased vehicles. UULIC contractually promised to refund any unearned premium due if class members paid off the insured loans before the loan termination date, but failed to do so when they paid off the insured loans prior to expiration. This settlement is expected to result in unearned premium refunds being paid to, in excess of, 100,000 class members.

$______________

Serious Injuries From Automobile Collision

Cash and Structured Settlement - 9/30/08. Plaintiffs v. Unnamed Defendant and UIM Carrier, U.S. District Court. Plaintiffs were involved in a serious automobile collision in 2004 caused by Defendant when she lost control of her vehicle and crossed the median on an interstate highway, and hit the Plaintiffs' car head-on. The Defendant contended that an unknown vehicle caused her to lose control. The firm proved that no such "phantom" vehicle was involved. After obtaining a key ruling from the United States District Court, the case settled for a confidential amount.

$______________

Tractor-Trailer, Nighttime Under-ride Case/Wrongful Death

Cash and Structured Settlement - 8/6/08. Plaintiffs v. National Gypsum, CPC Logistics, Inc., CPC Building and Manufacturing Products, LLC, et al., U.S. District Court, Northern District of Georgia, Atlanta Division. On January 24, 2006 just after dark, a CPC truck driver was backing a tractor-trailer across a two lane country road in South Georgia. The truck driver failed to accurately observe an oncoming vehicle driven by Plaintiff who struck the trailer broadside. Defendants denied all fault for the wreck and blamed the decedent arguing that she could have, and should have, seen the trailer across her lane. Our firm showed through expert testimony and scientific studies that the trailer could not have been seen in time for the wreck to be avoided. The case was settled for a confidential amount shortly before trial.

$ ______________

Commercial Truck/ Personal Injury

Cash Settlement - 8/4/08. Plaintiffs v. Brand Scaffold Rental and Erection, LLC, Superior Court of Cobb County, Georgia. On April 12, 2003, a truck driver working as a Brand Scaffold employee was driving a flat bed truck under the influence of both cocaine and alcohol. He struck a minivan head-on causing various injuries to Plaintiffs. A key issue in the case was proving that the truck driver was under the influence of cocaine at the time of the wreck. Our firm employed the former director of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation's Toxicology Lab to analyze and prove the reliability of the drug test administered. The case settled for a confidential amount shortly before trial.

$425,000

Auto Wreck/ Insurance Carriers' Refusal to Pay

Cash Settlement - 7/17/08. Carnes v. Smith, et al., State Court of Forsyth County, Georgia. Jerry Carnes was the Underinsured passenger in a Ford Expedition involved in a high speed collision on Georgia 400 near Cumming, Georgia. Mr. Carnes sustained multiple orthopedic and internal injuries during the wreck. The insurance company for the driver that caused the wreck tendered its insurance policy limits. However, Mr. Carnes' underinsured motorist carriers initially refused payment of his claim. The firm filed suit on behalf of Mr. Carnes and prepared the case for trial. On the eve of trial, Mr. Carnes' underinsured motorist carriers agreed to pay their full insurance policy limits and the case settled.

$______________

Wrongful Death

Cash and Structured Settlement - 5/08. Plaintiffs v. Bus Wreck/Anonymous Driver and Employer. Decedent's vehicle was struck by a bus driver who made an improper left turn at an intersection. The case settled for the maximum amount of insurance coverage available to the employer after the firm exposed prior violations in the bus driver's employment record. The settlement amount is confidential at the Defendants' request.

$5,000,000

Tanker Truck Wreck/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 1/03/08. Unnamed Plaintiffs v. Orica USA, Inc., State Court of Gwinnett County Georgia. On August 21, 2006, a 24 year-old lady was turning left into a private driveway on a rural North Georgia highway. As Plaintiff was making her turn, an Orica tanker truck attempted to pass her. Because the Orica truck was speeding, it was unable to avoid a collision and struck Plaintiff's car broadside resulting in her death. The firm was able to establish the speed of the tanker truck by analyzing the truck's "black box" which proved key to establishing the fault of the Orica driver and absolving Plaintiff of any negligence.

$ ______________

Tractor-Trailer/ Personal Injury

Settlement - 11/2/07. Plaintiff v. United Van Lines & Planes Moving & Storage, Inc., Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania. Plaintiff was severely injured when his tractor-trailer struck an overturned tractor-trailer on I-80 in Centre County, Pennsylvania. Plaintiff suffered a fractured cheek bone and lacerations to his face. The firm investigated the collision, interviewed the witnesses, and found that the driver of the overturned tractor-trailer had fallen asleep shortly before his tractor-trailer overturned. The case settled in response to a demand letter sent to the Defendants' insurance carriers.

$45,000,000

Nationwide Class Action

Cash Settlement - 10/22/07. Toole v. JMIC, Superior Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. When Plaintiff and Class Representative Ken Toole purchased a motor vehicle in 2001, he also purchased single-premium credit life and disability insurance. He paid an up-front premium at the time of purchase for the credit insurance coverage over the term of his loan. When Toole later paid his loan off early, under the terms of the insurance contract, he was entitled to receive a refund of the unearned premium. As it did with many of its other insureds, JMIC failed to refund the unearned premium to Toole.

During lengthy discovery, Plaintiff's counsel proved that the insurance company owed tens of thousands of its insureds millions of dollars of unearned premiums. A nationwide class was certified by the trial court in 2005, and in 2006, the Georgia Court of Appeals affirmed the certification of the nationwide class. After more than 4 years of contentious litigation and extensive discovery, JMIC was forced to produce a database with information on thousands of potential class members. JMIC finally agreed to pay $45 million into a Settlement Fund to settle the case.

The Court and Class Counsel will supervise a settlement administrator who will determine the amount of and pay unearned refunds to those class members/insureds that are due but have not received an unearned premium refund. JMIC is also required to take steps to provide additional prospective relief to make sure that insureds that terminate early in the future do get the refunds of unearned premium to which they are entitled. The settlement was preliminarily approved by the Court on October 31, 2007.

$______________

Credit Insurance
Class Action

Nationwide Class Action Settlement - 5/16/07. Perkins v. American National Insurance Company, U.S. District Court, Middle District of Georgia. Unearned premium refunds due as a result of early termination of insured loans. Butler, Wooten & Fryhofer, LLP served as co-Class Counsel with Ben B. Philips of Philips & Branch in Columbus in a class action settlement which was preliminarily approved by Judge Clay Land on May 16, 2007. The norm for such settlements in the past has been a "claims made" approach. Class Counsel conceived a different approach calculated to identify more insureds due refunds and locate them. In this case American National has agreed and has been ordered to create a database of information about potential class members with all information necessary to identify those insureds that may be entitled to unearned premium refunds. American National will contact its dealers and its insureds' lenders to determine the loan termination date for each insured covered during the applicable states' statutes of limitation. That information will enable American National to identify those insureds due refunds. The settlement process will be audited by Rust Consulting, a national settlement administration firm.

$______________

Product Liability/ Auto/Post-Collision Fire/Road Wreck/

Wrongful Death

Settlement - 4/13/07. Hampton v. DaimlerChrysler Corporation, Thomas LaMont Montgomery, Jireh Trucking, Inc., George Demopoulos, and Neighborhood Handyman Service, Inc., Superior Court of Iredell County, North Carolina. Chief Stephen G. Hampton brought suit against the defendants after his wife, Kimberly Wally Hampton, perished in a post-collision fuel fed fire. Kim Hampton, a rear passenger in a 2004 Jeep Liberty, was burned alive when the Jeep was struck in the rear by a truck driven by Thomas LaMont Montgomery. Montgomery negligently steered his vehicle into the rear of the Jeep Liberty after attempting to avoid George Demopoulos, who had negligently run his vehicle out of gas and partially obstructed a lane of travel on Independence Boulevard in Charlotte, NC. When Montgomery struck the rear of the Jeep Liberty, the Jeep exploded upon impact due to the failure of a vulnerable, bumper mounted fuel tank and a defective fuel filler neck which separated from the fuel tank upon impact. Although the three other occupants of the Jeep were able to escape through the driver's door with only minor injuries, Kim Hampton was unable to exit the burning Jeep because her door defectively jammed shut and trapped her in the burning vehicle.

Plaintiffs proved that, as far back as 1978, Chrysler knew that rear mounted fuel tanks were vulnerable and needed to be moved for safety. Plaintiffs also proved that Chrysler had moved to a secure mid-ship location virtually all of the fuel tanks in its line, including the Jeep Cherokee, but failed to move the fuel tank on its Jeep Liberty and Jeep Compass line to a secure position ahead of the rear axle and inside the frame rails.

At the time of her death, Kim Hampton was a loving wife, mother, public servant, and successful physician's assistant. The amount of the settlement is confidential.

$______________

Road Wreck/ Corporate Liability

Settlement - 3/14/07. Slaton v. DHL (USA) Express, Inc., 575 N. Express, LLC and Carla Loner, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Plaintiff Kenneth Slaton suffered catastrophic orthopedic injuries on June 13, 2003, when he was hit head on by an Airborne Express van driven by Carla Loner, in Bartow County, Georgia. Despite the fact that Mr. Loner was dressed head-to-toe in an Airborne Express delivery uniform, was driving a van emblazoned with numerous Airborne Express logos and was delivering Airborne Express packages at the time of the accident, Airborne Express (and its successor entity DHL (USA) Express) maintained it was not responsible or liable in any way for the accident. Instead, DHL/Airborne argued Ms. Loner and Defendant 575 N. Express were "independent contractors." The firm amassed substantial evidence from former managers, drivers and 'contractors' of Airborne to disprove that contention and to show the level of control DHL/Airborne in fact exercised over co-defendants Loner and 575 N. Express. The Firm also obtained a Court Order compelling DHL/Airborne to produce critical internal documents demonstrating the level of detail and operative control DHL/Airborne maintained over the supposed 'independent contractors' conducting its business. The case settled three weeks before trial. The settlement amount is confidential

$______________

Product Liability/ Auto/Seat Back

Cash Settlement - 11/21/06. Rothering v. DaimlerChrysler Corporation and Thomas Brown, Circuit Court, Baltimore County, Maryland. When the passenger's front seat in a 2004 Dodge Caravan collapsed in a rear impact, the passenger's head struck his 2 year-old son's head, causing his son's death from a severe skull fracture and catastrophic brain injury. Plaintiffs had evidence that Chrysler had known for years that its seatbacks were failing in rear impacts, as shown in its own rear crash tests and from its notice of real world incidents where occupants located behind the minivan's seats were injured or killed when those seats failed in rear impacts.

The wreck occurred when the Rothering's minivan was rear ended by Thomas Brown's vehicle. Because Mr. Brown caused the wreck, Plaintiffs also filed claims against him. At the defendants' request, the amount of the settlement is confidential.

$25,000,000

Environmental Contamination

Cash Settlement - 11/16/06. Glynn County Board of Commissioners v. Allied\Honeywell, Superior Court of Glynn County, Georgia. A cash settlement was obtained for the Glynn County Commission for environmental damages to 9 parcels of county property, including a county-owned park on Blythe Island and portions of the historic Altamaha Canal. The southeast Georgia county sued Allied Chemical, now Honeywell International, Inc., for thousands of pounds of mercury and PCB Aroclor 1268 discharged by Allied, starting in 1956, from its chlor alkali chemical plant into the Turtle River and the adjacent marshes. In addition to the cash payment, Honeywell was also required to immediately commence efforts to pump and treat a large underground pool of caustic brine, mercury and other chemicals that leaked from its plant during operations there and that now endanger the groundwater and aquifers under the former chemical plant site.

$25,000,000

Environmental Contamination

Cash Settlement - 11/15/06. Flournoy, Owens, Ricks, et al. v. Allied\Honeywell, U.S. District Court, Southern District of Georgia, Brunswick Division. A cash settlement was obtained for the owners of approximately 240 marsh and river front properties in Glynn County, Georgia, that were contaminated with mercury and PCBs. Starting in 1956, Allied Chemical Co. (now Honeywell International, Inc.) discharged thousands of pounds of mercury and PCB Aroclor 1268 from its Brunswick chlor alkali plant into the Turtle River estuary and the marshes of Glynn. The area, adjacent to the Allied-LCP Superfund site, has seafood consumption advisories, and mercury and PCBs have been found in the water, sediments and in fish and shellfish throughout the area.

The lawsuit, filed initially in 1995 and litigated for over eleven years, sought damages for loss of the use and enjoyment of the property because of the widespread contamination and discharges from the chemical plant. A Special Master was appointed by the court to allocate the proceeds from the settlement among the various property owners who suffered damage.

$______________

Product Liability/ Auto/Seat Back

Cash Settlement - 08/29/06. Neal v. DaimlerChrysler Corporation, T.D.T., Inc., and William Charles Holloway, Circuit Court, Ninth Judicial Circuit, Orange County, Florida. When the driver's front seat in a 2000 Dodge Caravan collapsed in a rear impact, the driver's head struck his 2 year-old daughter's head, causing a severe skull fracture and catastrophic brain injury. The child was properly restrained in an integrated child seat that DaimlerChrysler manufactured and permanently installed behind the driver's seat, a seat DaimlerChrysler contended it designed to collapse. Plaintiffs proved that Chrysler had known for years that its seatbacks were failing in rear impacts, as shown in its own rear crash tests on the seats, and from its notice of real world incidents where occupants located in and behind the minivan's seats were injured or killed when those seats failed in rear impacts.

The wreck occurred when the Neal's minivan was rear ended by the T.D.T. Mack truck driven by William Holloway. Because these defendants caused the wreck, Plaintiffs also filed claims against T.D.T., Inc. and William Holloway for hitting the Neal minivan. These defendants admitted liability prior to trial.

The case settled on the eve of trial. At the defendants' request, the amount of the settlement is confidential.

$______________

False Arrest

Confidential Cash Settlement - 8/2/06. Plaintiff v. Anonymous Major Corporation, Superior Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Plaintiff was charged with passing a bad check. Though furnishing an affidavit and other information from his attorneys that Plaintiff's wallet and checks had been stolen and the theft reported to the police, and that Plaintiff was at work and was not even in the state of Georgia at the time that the alleged bad check was presented, Defendant Corporation refused to drop the criminal charges, forcing Plaintiff to be jailed overnight. At a court hearing, all charges against Plaintiff were dismissed by the judge. After suit was filed and discovery undertaken showing other similar conduct by this Defendant, the Defendant Corporation settled the case with Plaintiff. At the Defendant Corporation's request, the amount of the settlement is confidential.

$______________

Tractor-Trailer Wreck/Improper Turn/Conspicuity

Confidential Cash Settlement - 7/10/06. Plaintiffs v. Anonymous Defendant and Insurance Company, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Plaintiffs were the two sons of a 72-year old man who was tragically killed when he struck the rear of a tractor-trailer that was improperly and dangerously turning at night and blocking two traffic lanes as the father was driving to work. Additionally, some of the rear lights on the tractor-trailer were inoperative and the trailer had no reflective tape. After suit was filed and discovery commenced, the wrongful death, personal injury and consortium claims were settled by the Defendant and its insurance company prior to trial. At the Defendant's request, the amount of the settlement is confidential.

$679,000

Tractor-Trailer Wreck/Personal Injury

Verdict - 5/6/06. Trudy Parker v. FM Logistics, Inc., Alejandro Quinonez, Superior Court of Newton County, Georgia. Trudy Parker was driving to her job on I-20 in the pre-dawn hours of December 15, 2001. Unknown to Ms. Parker, an FM Logistics ("FM") tractor-trailer, driven by Alejandro Quinonez, had run off the road and overturned. The tractor-trailer rig had come to rest blocking all three lanes of I-20. Ms. Parker was unable to avoid the trailer and debris blocking the road. Upon impact, she sustained serious orthopedic injuries, including permanent impairment to her foot and ankle. Defendant Quinonez was driving overtime in violation of federal regulations and he fell asleep at the wheel. Plaintiffs filed suit seeking compensatory and punitive damages against FM and Quinonez. FM failed to answer plaintiff's complaint, and the trial court entered default judgment accordingly. Even after default, FM engaged in discovery abuse, which resulted in an award of over $64,000 in fees and expenses in October 2005. The Court held a bench trial on damages in March 2006. Plaintiffs not only offered evidence of Quinonez's negligence and violation of safety regulations, but also proved FM and its drivers had engaged in a pattern and practice of disregard for federal safety regulations. The Court entered judgment in favor of Ms. Parker and awarded her $350,000 in compensatory damages, $250,000 in punitive damages, and $14,689 in final litigation expenses. FM paid the compensatory judgment in full, with interest. FM settled the remainder of the judgment while its appeal was pending.

$______________

Road Wreck/ Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 3/30/06. Mitcham v. The Terminix International Company Limited Partnership, Georgia Department of Transportation, and Travis D. Hart, State Court of Lowndes County, State Court of Fulton County, State Court of Houston County, Georgia. Wrongful death of mother of four; brain damage to eight year-old daughter. Car wreck on I-75 in South Georgia. During a rainstorm, a truck belonging to Terminix slid out of control and crossed the median, striking the family's car. The firm proved that the truck had slick rear tires - one of the rear tires had 87,000 miles on it - and both occupants of the company truck had complained the morning of the wreck that it should not be driven without new tires. They were ordered to go to the job, anyway. The firm also proved that Terminix concealed in discovery key statements of management employees generated shortly after the wreck, which noted Terminix's prior knowledge of the condition of the rear tires on the Terminix truck and noted that the tires needed to be replaced prior to the wreck. The State Court of Lowndes County issued an order detailing the concealment of the statements and assessed attorney's fees against Terminix. Georgia's Department of Transportation was also sued because a blocked highway drain caused rain water to pool on the roadway. The settlement amount is confidential at Defendants' request.

$13,000,000

Product Liability/

Fuel Tank/Trailer Hitch/Seatback/

Door Design

Verdict - 12/16/05. Gibson v. Ford Motor Co., Draw-Tite, Inc. and Burns, State Court of Athens-Clarke County, Georgia. Autie Gibson sued Ford, Draw-Tite and Burns after Autie's wife, Ann Marie Gibson, burned alive when her 1985 Ford Marquis was struck in the rear by the Burns vehicle. Mrs. Gibson's Ford had a defective, "pinto-esque" bumper fuel tank located in the known rear crush zone. The bumper tank exploded when it was punctured by the sharp bolts on a defective, uncrashworthy Draw-Tite trailer hitch also on the Gibson vehicle and designed by Draw-Tite for that model. Mrs. Gibson's Ford seatback was also defective. It failed by collapsing rearward in the crash, which dropped Mrs. Gibson's head and upper torso into the flames initially located only in the back seat. The door system on the Ford was also defective: Mrs. Gibson's doors were jammed shut, and could not be opened as a result of the impact. While rescuers at the scene attempted to un-jam the doors, Mrs. Gibson was trapped inside the burning car, screaming and frantically trying to extinguish the flames in her hair. According to the state crime lab autopsy, Mrs. Gibson died solely from the fire and smoke injuries she sustained while trapped in her burning car. The only injuries from the impact of the wreck itself were two bruises to her shins.

In a 4½ week trial, Plaintiffs proved Ford had known for years the dangers of the vulnerable fuel tank location and that both Ford and Draw-Tite knew the addition on this vehicle of a bumper trailer hitch with screws that could impact the tank in a crash made that design even more dangerous. Notwithstanding that knowledge, both Draw-Tite and Ford advertised this vehicle and hitch for towing and never warned a soul about the dangers.

The jury awarded $10 million for the full value of the life of Mrs. Gibson and $3 million for the pain and suffering from fire she experienced during the incident before her death. The verdict is believed to be the largest personal injury verdict in Athens-Clarke County history and the largest verdict against Ford in a fire case in Georgia.

Both Defendants Ford and Draw-Tite appealed the verdict. In a 7-0 opinion, the Georgia Supreme Court affirmed the verdict and judgment in its entirety. The judgment was then paid in full with interest.

$______________

Tractor-Trailer Wreck/Wrongful

Death

Cash Settlement - 10/18/05. In the Matter of Wrongful Death Proceeds for the next-of-kin of Melinda Ning Athakhanh, Decedent v. Covenant Transport, et al., District Court, Fourth Judicial District, Hennepin County, Minnesota. Melinda Athakhanh was killed when the small Honda she was driving was struck by a Covenant Transport tractor-trailer. The Covenant Transport tractor-trailer was traveling too fast for conditions and slid on ice. The tractor-trailer crossed the median and entered Melinda's lane of travel. Melinda was survived by her young daughter who miraculously survived the violent collision without injury. The amount of the settlement is confidential at the Defendant's request.

$12,000,000

Product Liability/

Negligence/

Construction Defect/

Corporate Liability/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 10/11/05. Fowler v. Phoenix Structures and Services, Inc., Sun Capital Partners, Inc., and Trinity Outdoor, LLC, State Court of Gwinnett County, Georgia. Brothers Joshua (23 years-old) and Anthony Fowler (21 years-old) were killed when a billboard on which they were working suddenly collapsed, throwing them 40 feet to the ground. The steel beams of the billboard fell on top of them. Evidence clearly established that the billboard collapsed because of faulty welds and substandard steel used in its manufacture. After Sun Capital Partners, Inc. ("Sun Capital") bought Phoenix (the billboard manufacturer), its management of the business caused the prior owners to all leave. At the time of the billboard's manufacture, Phoenix had no quality control at the plant. Sun Capital caused Phoenix to lay off experienced welders and required workers at the plant to work extensive overtime. There was no inspection of the billboard after it was built and before it was shipped to Snellville, Georgia. The case was settled during mediation, less than two weeks prior to trial.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Seatback Failure

Cash Settlement - 08/30/05. Bundrick v. Ford Motor Co., Splash, Inc. d/b/a The Platinum Plus, and Kyle D. Jumper, Court of Common Pleas, Richland County, South Carolina. Michelle Bundrick and her young son, Austin, were passengers in a 1993 Ford Escort that was hit from behind by a pickup truck. Michelle's front passenger seat failed causing the seat to strike Austin who was killed. All other passengers in the Escort and in the pickup truck received only minor injuries. Michelle Bundrick sued Ford claiming Ford Motor Co. knew from the outset of its development of the Escort that the seats were weak, and Ford's own testing showed in rear impact that the front seat would fail violently and strike rear seated passengers. Ford settled the case and insisted, as a condition of settlement, on keeping the amount of the settlement confidential.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Defective

Tire/Seatbelt

Failure/Rollover

Cash Settlement - 3/1/05. Jackson v. Ford Motor Co. and Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co., State Court of Troup County, Georgia. Anne Jackson brought suit against Ford and Goodyear after she was involved in a rollover in her 1997 Ford Explorer on I-85 near LaGrange, Georgia. Ms. Jackson lost control of her Explorer when her left rear Goodyear tire tread separated unexpectedly, causing the Explorer to pull to the left into the center median. The Explorer slid and rotated, made it back onto the roadway, where it began rolling over. Ms. Jackson's seatbelt failed, allowing her to be ejected from the Explorer. Ms. Jackson suffered a spinal cord injury that left her paralyzed. Ms. Jackson claimed that the Ford Explorer is defective because of its instability and its dangerous propensity to rollover on the road during normal driving conditions. Ms. Jackson also claimed that the Goodyear tire that separated suffered from both manufacturing and design defects that caused the tread to separate under normal driving conditions. Ford and Goodyear settled the case and insisted, as a condition of settlement, on keeping the amount of the settlement confidential.

$105,500,000

Product Liability/

Auto/Seatback Failure/Punitive Damages

Verdict - 11/23/04. Flax v. DaimlerChrysler Corp. and Louis Stockell, First Circuit Court, Davidson County, Tennessee. Defective front passenger seat in 1998 Dodge Caravan. 8 month-old Joshua Flax received a fatal brain injury when the front passenger seat failed rearward, causing the passenger's head to slam into Joshua's head when the family's minivan was hit from behind in a minor rear impact, resulting in a change in velocity to the minivan of only 17-19 mph. No one in either vehicle had any significant injury except Joshua, whose skull was crushed solely as a result of the front seat back's rearward collapse and failure. Plaintiffs proved that DaimlerChrysler had known for years that its seatbacks were failing in rear impacts, as shown by its own rear crash tests where every front seat collapsed, and from its notice of incidents from the real world where children seated behind the seats as well as adults in the collapsing seats themselves, were killed, paralyzed, and brain damaged when the seats failed in rear impacts. As actual damages, the jury awarded $5 million to Joshua's parents, Rachel Sparkman and Jeremy Flax, for the wrongful death of Joshua and $2.5 million to Rachel Sparkman, individually, for negligent infliction of emotional distress for witnessing the injuries to her 8 month-old, against both Daimler Chrysler and Stockell. After finding that DaimlerChrysler's misconduct in marketing, selling, and failing to warn about the defective seatbacks was "reckless," the jury also awarded $98 million in punitive damages against DaimlerChrysler. This verdict is believed to be the largest seatback verdict in the USA and the largest product liability verdict in Tennessee history.

Chrysler appealed the jury's verdict to the Tennessee Supreme Court. On appeal, the Supreme Court affirmed the wrongful death recovery and the punitive damages associated with it.

$1,000,000

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 10/19/04. Zalkin v. Navin Enterprises, Inc., et al. The 13 year-old son of Plaintiffs was run over after an unoccupied moving truck began rolling downhill towards Plaintiffs' front yard. The truck left the roadway in front of the residence and ran over Michael Zalkin who was airlifted to Scottish Rite Hospital where he died from his injuries. The truck was owned by Navin Enterprises, Inc. who operated the truck as a franchisee of Two Men and A Truck/International, Inc. The truck company paid its policy limits without suit being filed.

$153,000,000

Universal Life/

Insurance Class Action

Class Action Settlement (relief value available through settlement) - 8/12/04. McBride, Individually and in a representative capacity on behalf of a class of all persons similarly situated v. Life Insurance Company of Virginia, d/b/a GE Life and Annuity Assurance Company, U.S. District Court, Middle District of Georgia, Columbus Division. Butler Wooten served as class counsel in a groundbreaking settlement of a nationwide class action against GE Life Assurance and Annuity Company (formerly Life of Virginia) over its universal life insurance policies. The settlement, which was finally approved by Judge Duross Fitzpatrick on August 12, 2004, came nearly four years after the firm first filed suit for Robert and Barbara McBride.

Mr. McBride's monthly premium increased dramatically after he had been paying on the policy for about 13 years. The overarching issue was whether GE Life had the contractual right to administer its universal life policies so that additional or high premiums could be required to keep the policies in force. The settlement included three types of claims for premium relief: a level premium claim for policy holders who believed premiums would stay the same over time; a single premium claim for policyholders who believed that only one premium payment would ever be required; or a vanishing premium claim for policyholders who believed they had an obligation to pay premiums for only a limited amount of time, after which no more premiums would be required to keep the policy in force.

The settlement made more than $153 million worth of relief available to the class members, who could receive nearly full economic damages through a streamlined claims process. Depending on their claim, class members could be entitled to a variety of relief including (a) the dollar-for-dollar return of higher or additional premiums required by GE Life to keep the policy in force; (b) premium reduction back to original levels for class members whose premiums have already increased; (c) the freezing of premiums for policyholders who have not yet experienced a premium increase; (d) a paid up policy for qualifying single premium claimants; (e) a reinstated policy; or (f) an accidental death benefit. Retired federal Judge Sam Pointer analyzed the settlement and concluded that "All in all, the McBride settlement provides benefits to class members that are the equal of if not superior to those afforded under any other pretrial class settlement."

The McBride settlement came after years of hard fought litigation. After the Court denied GE Life's motions for summary judgment, plaintiffs' counsel forced GE Life to provide discovery of electronic user-created documents scattered throughout a fragmented and previously unsearchable computer system. Serious settlement negotiations began almost immediately after the parties agreed on a revolutionary framework for locating and producing the documents. This agreement materialized under pressure from then presiding Judge Wilbur D. Owens, Jr., who was considering a motion to compel filed by Plaintiffs.

On other discovery fronts, GE Life produced nearly 100 boxes of documents and millions of pages of electronic policyholder information. The electronic policyholder information proved to be crucial in negotiating and implementing the settlement. The parties crafted relief criteria to make sure that harmed class members received full economic damages. This innovative structure allowed the most significant relief to be delivered to the most seriously harmed class members. Plaintiffs' team of lawyers, along with experts in computer science, statistics, and insurance constantly evaluated the impact of these criteria during negotiations to make sure any settlement would be fair to the class.

The electronic information allowed the parties to create a settlement claims process where no class member had to go through a cumbersome, expensive, company-controlled, and time-consuming ADR process to receive full relief. Instead, the class member simply needed to check a box next to a statement which reflected his understanding of his premium obligation when he purchased the policy. Comparing this simple form to the policyholder's payment history determined the appropriate relief.

Harvard law professor and class action authority Arthur Miller praised the settlement for its streamlined process and because of the significant relief available to the class members. Having examined more than 70 class actions as a lawyer or expert, Professor Miller stated that he could recall only two or three settlements that rivaled this one in making almost complete relief available to harmed class members. In fact, none of the more than 350,000 class members objected to the settlement.

$______________

Medical Malpractice

Cash and Structured Settlement - 1/30/04. Stokes v. MacMurdo, et al., State Court of DeKalb County, Georgia. Improper placement of lumber epidural by unsupervised nurse anesthetist, resulting in permanent impairment of ability to walk and other problems, and permanent disability. Plaintiff was formerly a nurse employed by the defendant hospital. The amount of settlement is confidential at the defendants' request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Post-Collision Fire

Cash Settlement - 8/7/03. Belli v. DaimlerChrysler Corp., et al., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Defective 1991 Jeep Cherokee with a rear fuel tank mounted adjacent to and hanging down below the rear bumper. John Belli, his wife Lynne, and their baby, Nicole were burned alive when their Jeep was hit from behind, causing an explosion upon impact due to the failure of the vulnerable, bumper-mounted tank of the Jeep. In addition, plaintiffs proved that the driver's seatback was defective and failed by collapsing rearward in that wreck, thus impeding Lynne's escape by trapping her between the collapsing front seat in which her husband was riding and the rear seat in which she was riding (their baby Nicole was strapped in a car seat next to her mother in the back seat of the Jeep). Plaintiffs proved that, as far back as 1978, Chrysler knew that rear mounted tanks were vulnerable and needed to be moved for safety. Plaintiffs also proved that Chrysler had moved to a secure midship location, ahead of the rear axle and inside the frame rails, virtually all of the fuel tanks on its vehicles except the Jeep line. The amount of the settlement is confidential at the defendant's request.

$454,296,000

(over $640,000,000 collected, with interest)

Business Torts/

Breach of Fiduciary Duty/Fraud

Verdict and Judgment Affirmed and Paid April 2003. Six Flags Over Georgia, LLC, Six Flags Fund, LTD, (L.P.), and George DeRoy, as Trustee of the Six Flags Claim Trust v. Time Warner Entertainment Company, L.P., Six Flags Entertainment Corporation, Six Flags Theme Parks, Inc., and Six Flags Over Georgia, Inc., Superior Court of Gwinnett County, Georgia. The verdict awarded damages to the original investor of the limited partnership and to the general partnership in Six Flags Over Georgia amusement park against Time Warner affiliates (including Warner Bros.) for breach of fiduciary duty in Time Warner's management of the park between 1991 and 1997 when Time Warner acted as general partner. Plaintiffs proved a deliberate scheme to depress the value of the Georgia park by failing to install major rides and make appropriate capital investment. Plaintiffs proved that Time Warner took assets belonging to the partnership and used them for its own financial gain. The jury found by special interrogatory that Defendants acted with specific intent to cause harm so that the $250,000 cap on punitive damages under Georgia's Tort Reform statute was avoided. The verdict includes $197 million compensatory and $257 million punitive damages totaling $454 million.

At the time, this verdict represented the largest compensatory, punitive or combined verdict in Georgia history, surpassing the previous high held by this firm of $105 million in Moseley v. GM in 1993. Defendants never made any settlement offer. The pretrial proceedings were notable for the attempt by Defendants to hide virtually all of the damaging documents under false claims of attorney-client privilege and work product. Plaintiffs were successful in unmasking these. The Court struck or Defendants withdrew thousands of such bogus claims after an exhaustive pretrial discovery battle. Defendants appealed the verdict and the Georgia Court of Appeals twice affirmed the judgment in its entirety. On April 21, 2003, the U.S. Supreme Court denied certiorari and the judgment was paid and satisfied in full by defendants. With interest, the collected, paid judgment exceeded $640 million, making it one of, if not the, largest verdicts ever affirmed and paid in its entirety.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Defective

Airbag/Catastrophic

Brain Injury

Cash Settlement - 4/23/03. Howard v. Ford Motor Co., U.S. District Court, Middle District of Georgia, Macon Division. The defective, overly aggressive passenger-side airbag in Mrs. Wanda Howard's 1997 F-150 went off in a low speed collision when another vehicle pulled out in front of the Howards on September 13, 1998. Neither Mr. Howard nor Mrs. Howard was at fault in the wreck. Both were wearing their seat belts. No one in either vehicle, except Mrs. Howard, suffered any significant injury in this low speed collision. Mrs. Howard's severe brain injury was caused solely by her airbag. Plaintiff proved that the airbag was too powerful and overly aggressive for use in the truck. Plaintiff also proved that the airbag failed Ford's own internal injury guidelines; yet Ford sold it anyway and did not correct the problem and depower the airbag until the '98 model, which Ford was selling at the time of the wreck. Ford never warned owners of the '97 about what Ford knew of the problems or that a safer, depowered airbag was being sold to address them.

This case was originally tried over a two-week period beginning on February 10, 2003. After 4½ days of jury deliberations, the judge was forced to declare a mistrial when the only two jurors still holding out for Ford (final count was 10 for plaintiffs, 2 for Ford) fled the jury room complaining that there was "too much pressure" on them. The case was retried beginning about 4 weeks later, and a settlement was reached after the second day of that retrial. At Ford's request, the amount of that settlement is confidential.

$950,000

Medical Malpractice

Settlement - 12/7/02. John Doe v. Radiology Group, State Court of DeKalb County, Georgia. Settlement was obtained for a 56 year-old man when lesions bordering his spine were diagnosed by a radiologist as cysts rather than developing cancer. The patient died two weeks after a specially set trial was to begin. The patient's deteriorating health was a factor in his family's decision to settle the case on the eve of trial. His lawyers fully expected a bigger verdict given the evidence, but his widow wanted him to have closure prior to his death.

$_______________

Tractor-Trailer

Wreck/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 10/28/02. Richardson, et al. v. William Scotsman, Inc. and Andrew L. Kegler, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Kerri Hayes, age 17, Jacob Hayes, age 11, and their stepfather, James Richardson, were all killed when the small pickup truck in which they were riding was struck by a flatbed tractor-trailer near Albany, Georgia. The little pickup was turning left at an intersection when the tractor-trailer ran a red light and "t-boned" the pickup. The tractor-trailer driver was distracted and failed to see the Richardson vehicle in time to stop or even slow down prior to impact. The amount of the settlement is confidential at Defendant's request.

$______________

Sexual Assault/

Retaliation

Cash Settlement - 9/18/02. Riley v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. d/b/a Sam's Club, State Court of Richmond County, Georgia. Plaintiff brought suit against Wal-Mart after suffering physical, sexual, and emotional abuse at the hands of co-workers and managers at Sam's Club. This firm was associated to try the punitive damages phase of the case after a $750,000 compensatory verdict was awarded to Mrs. Riley. Wal-Mart settled the case after this firm obtained the broadest discovery order ever entered against Wal-Mart, compelling it to divulge claims history information and settlement amounts on a nationwide basis for a ten-year period. The firm successfully resisted a motion for summary judgment that would have capped the punitive damages awardable at $250,000. Wal-Mart's General Counsel insisted the amount of settlement remain confidential.

$2,750,000

Construction Site

Accident/Wrongful Death

Cash and Structured Settlement (estimated payout on $1,508,250 structured settlement is $5,679,033) - 9/17/02. Widow v. Anonymous Construction Company, et al., State Court of ______ County, Georgia. A 35 year-old husband and father of two young children was killed when a crane collapsed on the job site. Decedent was employed as a trucking service technician for rental vehicles on the job site with modest earnings potential. Hurdling various workers' compensation and immunity issues, settlement was obtained for his widow and children within six months of filing the lawsuit. A portion of the settlement was structured, insuring that the widow could stay home with her children and that the children would be well supported and educated in the absence of their father. While the parties' names and the location of the lawsuit are confidential, the amount is not confidential.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Roof Crush

Cash Settlement - 8/31/02. Steiner v. General Motors Corp., U.S. District Court of Kansas, Wichita Division. Perry and Amanda Steiner brought suit against General Motors after they were involved in a rollover in their 1998 Pontiac Montana. During the rollover, the roof structure of the Montana crushed downward onto Perry and Amanda Steiner leaving both quadriplegics. Both were wearing their seatbelts and both were seated on the passenger side of the vehicle where the roof crushed. The other three family members were also belted and walked away from the wreck when the roof did not crush over their heads. At the request of General Motors, the amount of the settlement is confidential.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Rollover/ Roof Crush

Cash Settlement - 4/14/02. Stansell v. Ford Motor Co., Court of Common Pleas, Hampton County, South Carolina. Martha Stansell and her husband, Major Jackson Stansell, brought suit against Ford after they were involved in a rollover in a 1996 Ford Explorer. During the rollover, the roof structure of the Explorer crushed downward into the Stansells' occupant space, striking them and leaving Martha a quadriplegic (fracture at C-6, C-7) and Major a paraplegic (fracture at T-3). They were both wearing their seatbelts and they were both on the passenger side of the Explorer where the roof crushed. On the driver's side of the Explorer where the roof did not crush, the two occupants suffered much less severe injuries from which they have fully recovered. Ford settled the case and insisted, as a condition of settlement, that the amount be kept confidential.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Post-Collision

Fire/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 4/5/02. Bradstreet as Personal Representative of the Estates of Gallagher v. General Motors Corp., U.S. District Court of Montana, Missoula Division. Defective GM pickup with side-saddle fuel tank design. Sherry Bradstreet brought suit against General Motors on behalf of her sister and her sister's three sons after all were killed when the car they were traveling in became engulfed in flames due to punctures to the vulnerable side-mounted fuel tank in the C/K pickup truck that struck their vehicle. After the court sanctioned GM for its conduct during discovery in the case and ruled there was a prima facie case that GM's claims of privilege were subject to the crime-fraud exception, GM elected not to try the case. At Defendant's request, the amount of settlement is confidential.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Seatback Failure

Cash Settlement - 4/5/02. McCutchen v. General Motors Corp., State Court of Troup County, Georgia. Mr. and Mrs. McCutchen brought suit against GM after she was involved in a rear-impact collision. The driver's seat of her 1990 Cadillac Sedan DeVille failed; she "ramped" underneath her seatbelt and into the back seat where she broke her back at T-11. Mrs. McCutchen, who was 74 years old at the time, was rendered a permanent paraplegic. In the lawsuit, GM was forced to disclose internal evidence of nearly 900 prior lawsuits and incidents involving its defective seating design from year model 1979 to the present. GM was forced to reveal the total amount it paid in those settlements and was ordered to allow the McCutchens to take the evidentiary depositions of its former General Counsel, Harry Pearce, and Legal Staff lawyer, Gary Toth. GM settled the case and insisted, as a condition of settlement, that the amount be kept confidential.

$______________

Product Liability/

GM Pickup/Post-

Collision Fire

Cash Settlement - 4/5/02. Chamberlain v. General Motors Corp., U.S. District Court, District of Kansas, Wichita Division. Defective GM pickup truck with side-saddle fuel tank design. Brian J. Chamberlain brought suit against GM after he was severely burned by fire when his Chevrolet pickup was struck by another pickup causing an explosion upon impact due to punctures and failures of the vulnerable side-mounted tank and vulnerable filler neck of the Chevrolet pickup truck. After the District Court ordered GM to disclose the amounts of its prior settlements of similar cases and to reveal the names of GM employees interviewed as a result of an internal investigation into document destruction by the corporation, GM elected to settle the case before the time set for compliance with those orders. At Defendant's request, the amount of settlement is confidential.

$______________

Racial Based Discrimination

Retaliation

Cash Settlement - 2/4/02. Gantt v. Waffle House, Inc. United Stated District Court, Northern District of Georgia, Atlanta Division. Jesse Gantt brought suit against his former employer, Waffle House, Inc., alleging that he was fired in retaliation for his refusal to make employment decisions as a Waffle House manager based on the race of the employee or applicant. Waffle House settled the case and insisted, as a condition of settlement, that the amount be confidential.

$______________

Product Liability/

Defective Tire/

Rollover/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 1/16/02. Middleton/Ontiveros v. Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. and Audon Ontiveros, Court of Common Pleas, Hampton County, South Carolina. Two people were killed and two injured when a defective tire failed, allowing a belt separation and causing the vehicle to go out of control and roll over. Plaintiffs systematically proved that Cooper Tire had concealed, in violation of court order, wide ranging evidence of its knowledge of tire failures as well as other evidence of problems with its tires. After a lengthy hearing, the trial court entered a detailed order documenting a pattern of concealment of evidence and discovery abuse touching almost every facet of the case. The court also ordered a further investigation to determine the full extent of that misconduct before an ultimate sanction was levied. Plaintiff moved for default to be entered against Cooper Tire as a result of that pervasive misconduct. Before the final hearing was held to determine whether to default Cooper Tire, the case settled. The settlement amount is confidential at Defendant's request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Seatback Failure

Cash Settlement - 12/6/01. Dize v. DaimlerChrysler Corporation and Cathy Lynn Howell, State Court of Gwinnett County, Georgia. Defective driver's seat in 1996 Chrysler minivan. The plaintiff, four year-old Morgan Dize, was catastrophically brain damaged when her mother's seatback failed rearward, causing her mother's head to slam into Morgan's head when the family's minivan was hit from behind in a minor rear-impact, resulting in a change in velocity to the minivan of only 12 mph. No one in either vehicle had any injuries except Morgan, whose injuries resulted solely from the seatback failure. Plaintiffs proved that Chrysler had known for years that its seatbacks were failing in rear impacts, as shown in its own rear crash tests on the seats, and from its notice of incidents from the real world where occupants located in and behind the minivan's seats were injured or killed when those seats failed in rear impacts. Pursuant to court order, plaintiffs' counsel conducted the first database search in Chrysler history and discovered numerous other incidents of seatback failure and injuries there from that had been concealed in violation of court order. Because of the concealment of evidence, the trial court found Chrysler in default, struck its answer, and ordered a trial only on the amount of actual and punitive damages. The case settled shortly thereafter. At Defendants' request, the amount of the settlement is confidential.

$______________

Nursing Home

Medical Negligence/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 11/19/01. Stewart v. Imperial Health Center, Inc., et al., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Juanita Stewart brought suit against Imperial Healthcare Center, an Atlanta-area nursing home, for the neglect, pain, suffering, and wrongful death of her husband, Frank Stewart, Jr. Mr. Stewart had been permanently disabled and bedridden since suffering a stroke in late 1996. He was a resident of a nursing home in Boston for two years where he received appropriate care. He moved to Atlanta to be closer to his two daughters. Within three months of transferring to the Imperial nursing home, he was dead. At Imperial Healthcare Center, an infected Stage IV decubitus was allowed to develop on Mr. Stewart and personnel there failed to treat him until it was too late to save him. He became septic and died after a painful and humiliating hospital course that involved multiple surgeries. The amount of settlement is confidential at Defendants' request and as a condition of settlement.

$______________

Professional Negligence

Cash Settlement - 10/26/01. Anonymous Plaintiff v. Anonymous Hospital and Surgeon, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Plaintiff underwent laparoscopic surgery with cold knife conization or "band aid" surgery to diagnose the cause of continuing pelvic pain. Post surgery, Plaintiff was admitted for a 24-hour inpatient observation period with a complaint of significant abdominal pain. Less than 24 hours after discharge, she presented to the emergency room complaining of fever, vomiting, nausea and a mass in her umbilical area. Over the next 2 days, several interns and resident physicians, none of whom entertained the possibility that she had a bowel injury from her prior laparoscopic surgery, saw her. The delay in diagnosis caused a portion of her bowel to die. She underwent surgery to remove the dying bowel, became grossly infected inside her abdomen, became septic, developed Adult Respiratory Distress Syndrome, wound up on a respirator and remained in the hospital for five months. Upon her discharge, she had a hole in her abdomen that required five major operations to close. One week before trial, the hospital settled the case. A portion of the settlement was structured for Plaintiff's long-term needs. The amount of the settlement is confidential at Defendants' request.

$400,000

Auto Wreck/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 8/5/01. Johnson v. Elizabeth K. Taylor. Less than 4 months after the death of Lee Johnson's wife in an intersection collision in the city limits of Atlanta and without filing suit, our firm secured for the surviving husband full payment of the adverse driver's liability limits, plus the payment of the limits of the husband's uninsured motorist policy, plus the limits of the policy insuring the vehicle which the decedent was driving. The firm accepted no fee for its legal work as a portion of the settlement proceeds was donated to a humanitarian foundation in memory of the decedent.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Seatbelt Failure

Cash Settlement - 6/21/01. Ramirez v. Isuzu Motors, Ltd., Isuzu Motors America, Inc., American Isuzu Motors, Inc., Subaru-Isuzu Automotive, Inc., Takata Corporation, Takata, Inc., Takata Restraint Systems, Inc. f/k/a Takata Fabrication Corporation, Crown Motor Company, Inc., and Billy Stewart Sanders, 136th District Court, Jefferson County, Texas. Defective seat belt in 1995 Isuzu Rodeo. The decedent, Jana Ramirez, was literally severed in half at L-1 when her Takata seatbelt failed to remain on her pelvis during a survivable rollover collision and instead sliced through her abdomen, which is incapable of supporting seatbelt loading at accident levels. Plaintiffs proved that the seatbelt failed to satisfy the requirements of the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard requiring the belt be designed to remain on the bony pelvis (and not on the soft abdomen) during the accident loading. Plaintiffs proved Isuzu and Takata negligently designed the belt to inject excessive slack during accident loading by virtue of a "fuse loop" in order to address the underlying crashworthiness of the vehicle or belt system. The case was settled during jury selection. The amount of the settlement is confidential.

$______________

HMO Liability/

Medical Malpractice

Cash Settlement - 5/30/01. Anderson v. Prudential Health Care Plan of Georgia, Inc., Meridian Medical Group, Inc. and Gregory Teel, M.D., State Court of DeKalb County, Georgia. This was a failure to diagnose breast cancer case against Jeanne T. Anderson's HMO and her treating physician. Rather than refer Plaintiff to a specialist for treatment/surgery of a suspicious breast lump, the primary care physician continued to follow her over a period of 1½ years, by which time it was finally diagnosed as invasive carcinoma. Plaintiff proved that the failure to refer was encouraged by the HMO's internal policies, procedures, and incentives designed to limit referrals so as to increase revenue, which documents were produced only after a series of court orders requiring the same.

$17,000,000

Personal Injuries/

Environmental

Cash Settlement - 04/20/01. Morrell, et al. v. Honeywell f/k/a Allied Chemical Co., U.S. District Court, Southern District of Georgia, Brunswick Division. Lead Plaintiff Tony Morrell and over one-hundred former employees who had worked at a chlor-alkali chemical plant in Glynn County, Georgia, were exposed to high levels of mercury, PCBs and other chemicals as a result of defective equipment, leaks and poor site management. Each of the plaintiff/employees was thoroughly examined by a neurologist who made specific findings regarding the effects of their exposure to mercury and other chemicals. After substantial discovery that lasted several years, extensive medical review, expert testimony, and multiple efforts to dismiss the case, the defendant, prior to trial, paid $22 million to resolve the workers' claims. The money was allocated among the workers by a Special Master, based on a matrix of court-ordered categories including the type of work, amount of exposure and objective medical findings.

$______________

Tractor-Trailer
Wreck

Cash Settlement - 4/9/01. Rosenbaum v. Rogers Dedicated Tractor-Trailer Services, Inc. f/k/a Rogers Delivery Services, Inc., Bobby Joe Coe and GAN North American Insurance Company, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Plaintiff was injured when hit by a tractor-trailer that failed to stop at a red light. It was proven that, at the time of the incident, the truck was being driven to Atlanta from Birmingham for brake repairs. Plaintiffs also showed that the improper equipment upkeep and the driver's inability to stop the truck contributed to the collision. The plaintiff suffered various broken bones and a traumatic brain injury. The amount of settlement is confidential.

$______________

Medical Malpractice/

Brain Damage To

Adult Male

Cash Settlement - 4/6/01. Morris v. Kenneth S. Weiss, M.D., Carle Clinic Association , P.C., The Carle Foundation Hospital, et al, Circuit Court of the Sixth Judicial Circuit, Champaign County, Illinois. Routine sinus surgery turned into a disaster for Mr. Morris, a skilled union worker employed by the University of Illinois. During surgery, the dura at the base of his skull was breached resulting in severe infection, disorientation and personality changes. Plaintiff couldn't retain his job that required complicated assembly of construction materials. The case had been pending for three years when our firm was associated. In slightly over four months, the case was prepared for trial, the adverse experts were deposed and a special trial setting was obtained. Three days before trial was to begin, the case settled for a substantial amount as opposed to no offer of settlement in the fall of 2000. Local counsel advised us the amount represented one of the most significant medical malpractice settlements in the history of Champaign County. The settlement is confidential at Defendants' request.

$3,000,000

Personal Injuries

Environmental

Class Action

Cash Settlement - 03/20/01. Leggett, et al. v Honeywell f/k/a Allied Chemical, U.S. District Court, Southern District of Georgia, Brunswick Division. This class action was filed on behalf of Hugh Leggett and other former employees, who worked at a chlor-alkali chemical plant in Brunswick, Georgia, and were exposed to mercury, PCBs and other chemicals as a result of defective equipment, leaks and poor site management. Those class members who chose to be examined by a doctor were thoroughly examined by a Board-certified neurologist, who made specific findings regarding the effects of their exposure to mercury and other chemicals. After substantial discovery in a related case over a period of several years, the defendant paid $3 million to resolve the claims of this class of former workers. The money was allocated among the workers by a Special Master, based on a matrix of court-ordered categories including the type of work, amount of exposure and objective medical findings.

$249,122,685

Business Torts/

Breach of Fiduciary

Duty/Fraud

Partial Payment of Judgment - 02/28/01. Six Flags Over Georgia, LLC, Six Flags Fund, LTD, (L.P.), and George DeRoy, as Trustee of the Six Flags Claim Trust v. Time Warner Entertainment Co., L.P., Six Flags Entertainment Corp., Six Flags Theme Parks, Inc. and Six Flags Over Georgia, Inc., Superior Court of Gwinnett County, affirmed by Court of Appeals of Georgia, certiorari petition by Time Warner defendants denied by Supreme Court of Georgia. The Time Warner defendants paid the full amount of compensatory damages awarded to plaintiffs, plus statutory interest of 12% per annum, then filed a petition for certiorari to the Supreme Court of the U.S. with respect to the punitive damages portion of the verdict. (That petition was "GVR'd" (granted, decision vacated, and remanded for consideration by the Court of Appeals of Georgia in light of the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Cooper v. Leatherman Companies on 10/1/01.))

$______________

Nursing Home

Medical Negligence/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 02/6/01. Mead v. Oak Manor Nursing Home, Inc., Omni H.C., Inc. and Omni Health Care Ltd., Superior Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. The family of Dorothy Mead, deceased, brought suit against Oak Manor Nursing Home, Inc. for her neglect, pain, suffering, and wrongful death. Ms. Mead was sent to the Columbus nursing home to rehabilitate a hairline fracture of her hip. She was allowed to develop an infected Stage IV decubitus on her sacrum and another on her buttocks. She became septic and ultimately died. The settlement is confidential at Defendant's request and as a condition of settlement.

$______________
Professional

Negligence/

Product Liability/

Wrongful Death

Cash and Structured Settlement - 11/17/00. Caraway v. Turner Sports & Entertainment Development, Inc., Turner Properties, Inc., Barton-Malow Company, Arquitectonica International Corp., Hellmuth, Obata & Kassabaum, Inc., The LZA Group, Inc. d/b/a Thornton-Tomasetti Engineers, Cecil Chan & Associates, Inc., H. Wilden & Associates, Inc., Metromont Prestress Company, Law Engineering & Environmental Services, Inc., and R&D Testing & Drilling, Inc., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. A negligently designed, 18-ton concrete seating section at the Phillips Arena in downtown Atlanta collapsed during construction and fell, crushing and killing welder Sam Caraway. Mr. Caraway's widow brought a wrongful death suit against eleven defendants, including the architects, structural engineers, inspectors and designers of the seating section. By obtaining and reviewing over 50,000 documents related to the Arena project during discovery, Plaintiff showed that Defendants had chosen an inherently unstable design for the seating area, imposed rigorous time pressures on construction, forced dangerous night work, and painted the connection for the seating area with non-weldable primer, all of which contributed to the collapse. Plaintiff also showed that after the incident, a safer design was implemented. The case settled after over 4 days of mediation. Portions of the settlement were structured for the long-term benefit of Mr. Caraway's four surviving children. The amount of the settlement is confidential at Defendants' request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Post-Collision Fire

Cash Settlement - 11/14/00. Butler v. DaimlerChrysler Corp. and John Larry Bricker, Superior Court of Colquitt County, Georgia. Defective 1997 Dodge Ram Van with a 35-gallon plastic fuel tank mounted approximately five inches from the rear bumper and hanging down into the impact zone below the rear bumper. Plaintiff, a 41 year-old woman, brought suit against Chrysler after she was severely burned when the Dodge Ram Van she was driving was rear-ended by another vehicle while the van was stopped at a highway construction site, causing explosion upon impact due to the failure of the vulnerable, bumper-mounted tank of the Dodge Van. Plaintiffs proved that, as far back as 1978, Chrysler knew the rear-mounted tank was vulnerable and needed to be moved for safety but that Chrysler delayed moving the tank for almost twenty years, until the 1998 model year. At the time of Plaintiff's wreck, Chrysler was already selling a redesigned '98 model with the tank having been moved to a midship location, which Chrysler's own documents admitted was a move to a "protected" location. The amount of settlement is confidential at Defendant's request.

$______________

Electrocution

Cash Settlement - 10/19/00. Tew v. Nationwide Electrical Testing, Inc. and MARTA, Superior Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Plaintiff Harold Tew was hired as a painter by Defendant Nationwide to paint an electric transformer box located on the premises of MARTA. Plaintiff was told by employees of both Nationwide Electrical and MARTA that the electric transformer box was safe to paint, but when Mr. Tew attempted to paint the box, he was severely shocked. He suffered catastrophic electrical burns over a large percentage of his body, requiring multiple skin graft surgeries. The amount of the settlement is confidential at Defendants' request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Wrongful Death

Cash/Structured Settlement - 09/25/00. Phillips/Byrd v. General Motors Corp., U.S. District Court of Montana, Missoula Division. GM pickup truck with side-saddle fuel tank design. Alvin Phillips brought suit against GM on behalf of his daughter, Angela Byrd, son-in-law, Darrell Byrd and grandsons, Timothy and Samuel Byrd after Angela, Darrell and Timothy were killed and Samuel injured when the Chevrolet pickup truck they were traveling in became engulfed in flames due to punctures to the vulnerable side-mounted fuel tank in a collision with a tractor-trailer. After the federal court ruled serious sanctions would be imposed against GM for its conduct in discovery and found there was a prima facie case that GM's claims of privilege were vitiated by the crime-fraud exception, GM elected not to try the case. At Defendant's request, the amount of settlement is confidential.

$_______________

Tractor-Trailer

Wreck/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 06/18/00. Sandquist v. Scales Transport Corp., Wausau Business Insurance Co., and James J. Moore, State Court of Cobb County, Georgia. Driver of tractor-trailer, who had driven too much the week before the wreck and was on numerous medications, unknown to his employer, lost control of his truck on a major highway near Atlanta. He crossed through the grassy median and entered oncoming traffic. Plaintiffs, on their way back to Illinois, were struck by the big truck. Mrs. Sandquist died in the collision. Mr. Sandquist sustained serious injuries. Witnesses stated that the tractor-trailer was going too fast when it came up quickly on a slower moving car and then dangerously steered left and ultimately through the median to avoid the slower moving car. A favorable settlement, which is confidential at Defendants' request, was reached despite the fact that the trucking company had filed for bankruptcy before suit was initiated.

$______________

Medical Malpractice/

Brain Damaged

Baby Case

Cash Settlement - 12/23/99. Sines v. HMO-owned hospital and doctor. An Atlanta area hospital and doctor delayed a c-section delivery of an infant. After the infant went into full arrest, she was delivered by c-section, but suffered profound brain damage. The case was settled before suit was filed and included an agreement to provide home nursing care for the child over the next eight years. The amount of settlement is confidential at Defendants' request.

$______________

Rape/Prior Sexual

Abuse By School Official

Cash Settlement - 11/04/99. Plaintiff v. Riverside Military Academy, et al., State Court of Hall County, Georgia. A junior high student was raped by another student at a boys' school. Suit was brought against the school. The case settled after extensive research into past events at the school and at other schools employing a key school official. The amount of settlement is confidential at Defendants' request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 11/01/99. Pollard v. Asplundh Tree Expert Company and Altec Industries, Inc., State Court of Clayton County, Georgia. Surviving parents sued after Dwight Pollard died when the aerial lift he was working in crashed to the ground after two of the cables which supported the lift failed. The amount of the settlement is confidential at Defendants' request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 09/24/99. Bampoe-Parry v. General Motors Corp. and Pete John Franetovich, State Court of Fulton County , Georgia. The widow of Mr. Bampoe-Parry brought suit after his 1985 Chevette was struck in the rear by a Volvo while trying to merge onto the interstate in Atlanta and the fuel system on the Chevette failed resulting in a post-collision fuel-fed fire. Mr. Bampoe-Parry received burns and died as a result of his injuries.

In a landmark ruling, the court found that Plaintiff had proven that GM and its lawyers engaged in crimes and frauds in an attempt to conceal evidence about an internal GM report written by Ed Ivey concerning post-collision fuel-fed fires. The amount of the settlement is confidential at Defendant's request.

$473,006

Dump Truck Collision

Cash Settlement - 08/28/99. Shellem v. Franklin Trucking Co., Inc., Terrance Franklin d/b/a Franklin Trucking Co., and Linwood Johnson, Jr., State Court of DeKalb County, Georgia. Plaintiff sued trucking company after its dump truck struck a vehicle in the rear, causing said vehicle to then violently strike a vehicle driven by Plaintiff. Insurer paid policy limits.

$715,000

Vehicular Collision/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 07/20/99. Grow for Estate of Daigle, Deceased v. Georgia D.O.T., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Surviving mother sued after her daughter was killed in a vehicular collision. The signage, signals, design, layout, and configuration of the intersection caused the driver of the vehicle in which the daughter was a passenger to form the mistaken conclusion that the intersection was a four-way stop. An approaching vehicle collided with the passenger side of the vehicle killing Plaintiff.

$4,100,000

Mesothelioma/ Asbestos

Cash Settlement - 05/31/99. Plaintiff v. Asbestos

Manufacturers, Distributors and Insulation Contractors , State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Plaintiff, a 49 year-old father of three was exposed to asbestos while working as an electrician in power plants since 1968. In 1998, he was diagnosed with mesothelioma, a form of cancer caused by exposure to asbestos. His case was settled the day before his trial was specially set to start against approximately 20 asbestos manufacturers and distributors, including insulation contractors. Plaintiff was prepared to prove that defendants had known prior to Plaintiff's exposure that asbestos caused various diseases, including mesothelioma and that these companies had failed to protect or warn Plaintiff and other workers about the danger of working with asbestos.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Type III

Door Latch/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 05/19/99. Cooper v. General Motors Corp. and Kathryn L. Ables, First Judicial Circuit Court Hinds County, Mississippi. The wrongful death beneficiaries and heirs brought suit against GM after Mr. Cooper was crushed between the vehicle and roadway when the 1985 Chevrolet S-10 pickup he was driving was hit, and the door latching system failed and opened, partially ejecting Mr. Cooper. The amount of settlement is confidential at Defendant's request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 05/5/99. Hamil/Knott v. General Motors Corp; White/Whaler v. General Motors Corp., U.S. District Court, Northern District of Oklahoma, Tulsa Division. Defective fuel system in a GM A-Car. Suit brought by the Executor of the Estate of Lottie E. Knott and by the Personal Representative of the Estate of Mary A. Whaler after they died as a result of a post-collision fuel-fed fire in a 1979 Chevrolet El Camino that was struck in the rear by a 1978 Ford Fairmont. The settlement amount is confidential at Defendant's request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Door Latch

Failure/Brain Damage

Cash Settlement - 04/15/99. Bobo v. Mitsubishi, Superior Court of Barnstable County, Massachusetts. Plaintiff Karen Bobo, 34 years old at the time of the incident, was catastrophically brain damaged and rendered in a persistent vegetative state when the door latch on her 1990 Mitsubishi Galant failed in a minor side impact collision. The door opened, and the vehicle slid into a tree which intruded into the area of the now open door and hit the plaintiff in the head. Plaintiff proved Mitsubishi concealed evidence from Plaintiffs and the trial court about its knowledge of door latch failures in its vehicles in violation of court order and express directives of the trial court. The trial court found Mitsubishi's concealment of evidence "deliberate and intentional" and labeled their conduct as a "fraudulent use of the judicial system." The amount of settlement is confidential at Defendant's request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Rollover/

Seatbelt Failure/

Door Latch Failure/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 04/15/99. McDaniel v. Mitsubishi Motors Corp. and Marcus J. Silney, Court of Common Pleas, Hampton County, South Carolina. Michael McDaniel, 30 years old at the time of the incident, was killed when the Mitsubishi Montero in which he was riding rolled over, his Takata seatbelt unlatched, the Mitsubishi door latch failed, the door opened, and Mr. McDaniel was ejected out the vehicle through the open door and crushed by the rolling vehicle. The case involved the propensity of the Mitsubishi Montero to rollover, the propensity of the Takata seatbelt to unlatch, and the propensity of Mitsubishi door latches to come unlatched in collisions and rollovers. Plaintiffs proved that Mitsubishi had concealed evidence of door latch and seatbelt failures from the trial court in violation of numerous trial court orders. A motion for default judgment as a result of this discovery abuse was pending at the time of the settlement. At Defendants' request, the amount of the settlement is confidential.

$______________

Large Truck

Collision/Wrongful Death

Cash and Structured Settlement - 03/10/99. Hancock v. Unnamed Defendants, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Surviving widow and children of decedent sought damages when a large truck stopped in a multi-lane highway when an axle shift mechanism malfunctioned. The amount and terms of settlement are confidential at Defendants' request.

$454,296,000

Business Torts/

Breach of Fiduciary

Duty/Fraud

Verdict - 12/21/98. Six Flags Over Georgia, LLC, Six Flags Fund, LTD, (L.P.), and George DeRoy, as Trustee of the Six Flags Claim Trust v. Time Warner Entertainment Company, L.P., Six Flags Entertainment Corporation, Six Flags Theme Parks, Inc., and Six Flags Over Georgia, Inc., Superior Court of Gwinnett County, Georgia. The verdict awarded damages to the original investor of the limited partnership and to the general partnership in Six Flags Over Georgia amusement park against Time Warner affiliates (including Warner Bros.) for breach of fiduciary duty in Time Warner's management of the park between 1991 and 1997 when Time Warner acted as general partner. Plaintiffs proved a deliberate scheme to depress the value of the Georgia park by failing to install major rides and make appropriate capital investment. Plaintiffs proved that Time Warner took assets belonging to the partnership and used them for its own financial gain. The jury found by special interrogatory that Defendants acted with specific intent to cause harm so that the $250,000 cap on punitive damages under Georgia's Tort Reform statute was avoided. The verdict includes $197 million compensatory and $257 million punitive damages totaling $454 million.

At the time, this verdict represented the largest compensatory, punitive or combined verdict in Georgia history, surpassing the previous high held by this firm of $105 million in Moseley v. GM in 1993. Defendants never made any settlement offer. The pretrial proceedings were notable for the attempt by Defendants to hide virtually all of the damaging documents under false claims of attorney-client privilege and work product. Plaintiffs were successful in unmasking these. The Court struck or Defendants withdrew thousands of such bogus claims after an exhaustive pretrial discovery battle. Defendants appealed the verdict and, on July 13, 2000, the Georgia Court of Appeals affirmed the judgment in its entirety.

$______________

Business Torts/

Tortuous Interference

With Contract/ Slander

Cash Settlement - 12/05/98. Plaintiffs v. Unnamed Distribution Company, et al., State Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Plaintiffs sought damages for intentional interference with suppliers, slander, expenses and lost profits. Major company cut off new company's suppliers and slandered owners of competitor company. The amount of the settlement is confidential at Defendants' request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Type III

Door Latch/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 08/17/98. Simmons v. General Motors Corp., U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi, Jackson Division. The mother of young children brought suit against GM after her daughter was killed and son injured when the mother's Pontiac Grand Prix crashed, the Type III door latch failed, the door opened, and her children were ejected. The amount of settlement is confidential at Defendant's request.

$______________

Pharmaceutical

Product Liability/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 07/02/98. Plaintiff v. Major Drug Manufacturer, U.S. District Court, Middle District of Georgia, Columbus Division. A 53 year-old woman, who regularly drank wine and alcohol but was in good health, was prescribed extra strength acetaminophen, 4 times a day, by her doctor after she was diagnosed with bronchitis. After taking the recommended dose for 4 days, she became restless and confused and was taken to the emergency room with elevated liver enzymes and a diagnosis of sudden liver failure. She was transported to the University of Birmingham Hospital but was too sick for an emergency liver transplant which was her only chance for survival. She died 2 days after being hospitalized with fulminate liver failure. The amount of the settlement is confidential at Defendant's request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Rollover/

Paraplegia

Cash Settlement - 04/29/98. Wing v. Suzuki Motor Corp. and Valek, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, White Plains Division. Plaintiff Blair Wing, 23 years old at the time of the settlement, is a paraplegic who was paralyzed while riding as a passenger in a Suzuki Samurai that rolled over on November 15, 1992 after hitting a patch of ice. The case involved the propensity of the Suzuki Samurai to roll over because of an unstable and defective vehicle design. The case also involved allegations of defects in the amount of occupant protection provided by the Suzuki Samurai. Amount of settlement is confidential at Defendants' request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Rollover/

Brain Damage

Cash and Structured Settlement - 03/13/98. Ray v. Suzuki Motor Corp. and Thomas K. Crawford, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Defective automobile. Plaintiff Steven Ray, 25 years old at the time of the settlement, was brain damaged while riding in a Suzuki Samurai that rolled over after being struck at an intersection by a pickup truck driven by Defendant Crawford. The case involved the propensity of the Suzuki Samurai to roll over because of an unstable and defective vehicle design. It also involved allegations of seatbelt design and seat design defect. Amount of settlement is confidential at Defendants' request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 03/10/98. Peterson v. General Motors Corp., U.S. District Court, District of Kansas, Wichita Division. Defective GM pickup truck with side-saddle fuel tank design. Surviving spouse of 46 year-old man brought suit against GM after her husband was killed by fire when a Chevrolet pickup truck he was a passenger in collided with another pickup truck, causing explosion upon impact due to punctures to vulnerable side-mounted fuel tank of Chevrolet pickup truck. Amount of settlement is confidential at Defendant's request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 03/10/98. Barnes v. General Motors Corp., Court of Common Pleas, Richland County, South Carolina. Defective GM pickup truck with side-saddle fuel tank design. The surviving spouse of a 41 year-old woman brought suit against GM after his wife died from fire after they struck the side of a Chevrolet pickup truck with side-mounted fuel tanks which was blocking the roadway, resulting in punctures to the vulnerable side-mounted fuel tank of GM pickup truck. At the Defendant's request, the amount of settlement is confidential.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Rollover/Paraplegia

Cash Settlement - 03/09/98. Morgan v. Chrysler Corp., Gabriel T. Conaway and City of LaGrange, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. A 19 year-old man was rendered a paraplegic when the 1980 CJ-5 in which he was a belted passenger rolled over after striking a curb. At Defendants' request, the amount of settlement is confidential.

$580,000

Civil Rights/§ 1983/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 12/23/97. Wallace/Westray v. City of Cumming, James David Swansey, Earl Singletary, Robert Rickett, County of Forsyth, Randal Thompson, Richard Holcomb, and Ron McDowell, U.S. District Court, Northern District of Georgia, Gainesville Division. Surviving parents and Administratrix of the Estate of William Wade Wallace brought Federal § 1983 action against City of Cumming, Forsyth County, police officers, and deputies who were involved in the brutal beating and killing of decedent after a police chase in Forsyth County, Georgia. All parties settled within eight months of suit being filed.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Quadriplegia

Cash Settlement - 11/19/97. Woody v. General Motors Corp. and Thomas R. Durrett, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. A 29 year-old woman was rendered a quadriplegic in a rear-impact collision. The Chevrolet Camaro she was driving was struck by another vehicle, and upon impact, the front seat back in the Camaro failed and bent backwards. Ms. Woody ramped up the seat and struck the header at the rear of the vehicle. The amount of the settlement is confidential at General Motors' request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 11/13/97. Betton for Estate of Hale v. K&K Tire, Inc., Dana Corporation, Curb Specialists, Inc., and Ford Motor Co., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. The decedent was driving her vehicle on the highway when she was rear-ended by a Ford pickup truck that lost control when its wheel came off. The impact pushed decedent into another vehicle and she sustained fatal injuries. The husband of decedent brought suit against the driver, the vehicle manufacturer and others for defective axle design and cotter pin. The case settled against all defendants. At the request of Defendants, the amount of settlement is confidential.

$1,250,000

Product Liability/

Auto

Cash and Structured Settlement - 11/03/97. Teodoro for Kimball v. Century Toyota, Inc., Superior Court of New Haven, Connecticut ("Kimball II"). After settling with Toyota and the van conversion company, our firm withdrew those claims on 8/17/97 and pursued remedies against the dealership that recommended to David Kimball's mother that the van be converted in a manner inconsistent with Toyota's own directives. Less than three months later, the dealership settled.

$36,900,000

Product Liability/

Auto/Rollover/

Quadriplegia

Verdict - 10/31/97. Rodriguez v. Suzuki Motor Corp. and American Suzuki Corp., Circuit Court of St. Louis, Missouri. Kathryn Rodriguez, 32 years old at the time of this verdict, is a quadriplegic who was paralyzed while riding as a passenger in a Suzuki Samurai that rolled over on February 11, 1990. The case involved the propensity of the Suzuki Samurai to rollover due to an unstable and defective vehicle design. The jury awarded $25 million in compensatory damages and $11.9 in punitive damages against Suzuki. Testimony and documents at trial showed that Suzuki developed a "crisis plan" to deal with the Samurai rollover problem more than 3 months before the first Samurai was sold in the United States. Suzuki documents further showed that it knew the Samurai, because of its narrow wheelbase, was "bound to turn over." General Motors evaluated a Samurai-type vehicle in the early 1980's and rejected the idea of importing it into the United States because the vehicle would have "unacceptable rollover tendencies." After GM refused to import and market the Suzuki vehicle, Suzuki decided to sell the vehicle itself in the United States without making the significant engineering changes recommended by GM. More than 240 cases have been filed against Suzuki, and more than 8,200 people have been injured and 213 killed in Samurai rollover accidents since Suzuki started selling the vehicle in the United States.

This case was first tried to a verdict of $90 million in July of 1995. The first jury's verdict was reversed because of the exclusion of evidence that the driver had consumed some wine at a winery before the accident. On retrial, the court admitted evidence of wine consumption. The second jury's verdict of $36,900,000 was also appealed by Suzuki. The case was settled by Suzuki after appeal before a third trial. The settlement amount is confidential at Suzuki's request.

$______________

Medical Malpractice/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 10/09/97. Plaintiff v. Humana, Inc., General Hospitals of Galen, Inc. (now Columbia), and William Thomas Redwood, M.D., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. The husband and parents of a 35 year-old woman brought suit against Humana Hospital in Newnan and an emergency doctor at the hospital for the severe anoxic brain damage that Plaintiff suffered after she was allowed to extubate. Following her extubation in the ICU, Plaintiff was improperly bagged and then, she was esophagally intubated twice and the endotracheal tube left in the wrong position for several minutes, resulting in global brain damage because of a failure to provide her with adequate oxygen. She lived for over a year in a coma before dying. The amount of the settlement is confidential at Defendants' request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 09/24/97. Casey v. American Isuzu Motors, Inc. and Subaru-Isuzu Automotive, Inc., U.S. District Court, Middle District of Georgia, Thomasville Division. The parents of a 22 year-old man brought suit against Isuzu after their son died in his Isuzu pickup. Despite being belted, his head hit the defectively designed steering wheel hub as a result of the energy absorbing loop that Isuzu designed and engineered into his seatbelt and a defectively designed hub cover that came off during the motor vehicle collision. The amount of the settlement is confidential at Defendants' request.

$______________

Tractor-Trailer/

Tow Truck Wreck/

Wrongful Death

Cash and Structured Settlement - 06/16/97. Akins v. Crider Poultry Co., Inc. and Jennings Towing and Recovery International, Inc., et al., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. The spouse and eight surviving children of decedent brought suit for wrongful death against trucking company and wrecker service which was towing the disabled defective tractor-trailer rig when decedent collided with rear of rig in pre-dawn darkness. Cash settlement plus structured settlement paying out over 15 years to widow and children. The amount of settlement is confidential at Defendants' request.

$______________

Pharmaceutical

Liability/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 05/15/97. Kaufman v. Janssen

Pharmaceutica and Johnson & Johnson , State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Wrongful death case brought for the death of a doctor's wife who died in her sleep after taking one extra tablet of Hismanal, an antihistamine developed and marketed by Janssen and Johnson & Johnson. The medical examiner who did an autopsy determined the cause of death to be a fatal cardiac arrhythmia caused by Hismanal, a drug prescribed for allergies and runny noses. The amount of the settlement is confidential at the Defendants' request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Type III

Door Latch/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 04/28/97. Conkle v. General Motors Corp., State Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. The parents of a young man brought suit after their son was killed when his 1987 Pontiac Grand AM rolled over, the Type III door latch failed, the door opened, and he was ejected. The amount of the settlement is confidential at Defendant's request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Type III

Door Latch/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 04/28/97. Roberts v. General Motors Corp. and Thomas F. Sanders, Jr., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. The surviving children of a young man brought suit against GM after their father was killed when his 1986 S-10 pickup truck rolled over, the Type III door latch failed, the door opened, and he was ejected and crushed by the vehicle. The amount of the settlement is confidential at the Defendant's request.

$3,900,000

Class Action

Property Damage/

Environmental Law

Cash Settlement - Approved 04/02/97. Joiner, et al. v. Hercules, Inc., U.S. District Court, Southern District of Georgia, Brunswick Division. Property damage class action for nuisance and trespass. This case was brought on behalf of the owners of 156 parcels of residential and commercial property in Glynn County, Georgia. Toxaphene, an insecticide manufactured by Hercules, Inc. and banned by EPA for use in the U.S., was found in adjacent neighborhood next to Hercules' chemical plant in Brunswick. After lengthy discovery, Defendant Hercules settled the case prior to trial.

$750,000

Tractor-Trailer

Wreck/Personal Injury

Cash Settlement - 12/02/96. Jarrell v. R.K. Wright Trucking Co., Inc. and John Deere Insurance Co., et al., State Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Policy limits settlement for personal injuries including mild closed head injury sustained when tractor-trailer rig hydroplaned, blocking lanes of traffic and causing a collision.

$1,200,000

Truck Wreck/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 11/22/96. Collett v. Thacker North Inc., Lonnie Lee, et al., State Court of Forsyth County, Georgia. A 56 year-old woman was killed when the car in which she was riding was struck by a sheet rock truck.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 08/21/96. Randolph for Dalton, dec'd v. General Motors Corp. and Lonnie Jones, Jr., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Defective GM pickup truck with side-saddle fuel tank design. The surviving parent of a young man brought suit against GM after her son was killed by fire when his motorcycle had a side impact collision with a Chevrolet pickup truck. The amount of settlement is confidential at Defendant's request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 08/21/96. Seebeck v. General Motors Corp., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Defective GM pickup truck with side-saddle fuel tank design. The surviving wife and mother brought suit against GM after her husband and young son were killed by fire when the Chevrolet pickup in which they were riding was struck by a Ford Escort that crossed the center line of the roadway. The amount of settlement is confidential at Defendant's request.

$925,000

Construction Accident/

Wrongful Death

Cash and Structured Settlement (estimated payout on $250,000 structured settlement is $638,974) - 07/31/96. Widow v. Unnamed Construction Subcontractor, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. A 50 year-old man was struck by a falling steel beam at a construction site. He sustained massive head injuries and died the following day. His widow brought claims on behalf of her deceased husband against the subcontractor.

$4,750,000

Product Liability/

Auto/Personal Injury

Cash and Structured Settlement (estimated payout on $750,000 structured settlement is $2,730,510) - 07/18/96. California Plaintiffs v. Unnamed Large Auto Company, Superior Court of Los Angeles, California. A young pregnant woman was catastrophically burned, and her unborn baby died, when the vehicle in which she was riding burst into flames after a rear-impact collision.

$1,850,000

Medical Malpractice

Cash and Structured Partial Settlement (guaranteed payout on $699,486 structured settlement is $2,255,062) - 07/09/96. Unnamed Plaintiff v. Hospital, Doctor and Anonymous Defendant, State Court of Cobb County, Georgia. 32 year-old man with complaints of pain, numbness and tingling in arms and legs was brought to the ER by police following an automobile collision. Following an incomplete series of cervical spine x-rays and an emergency physician's exam, he was discharged with a diagnosis of cervical sprain and strain. He suffered progressive paralysis. He was seen by a doctor at an infirmary where he was observed for 36 hours before being returned to the hospital where a diagnosis of C6-C7 spinal injury was made. Patient had C7 level paraplegia, which was permanent. Settlement was concluded with three of the defendants following extensive discovery. Additional claims remain pending against other defendants. Guaranteed cash and annuity payout is $2,255,062 and projected lifetime total payments to Plaintiff are $4,249,695.

$150,000,000

Product Liability/

Rollover/Paraplegia

Verdict - 06/03/96. Hardy v. General Motors Corp. and Capitol Chevrolet, Inc. and Hardy v. General Motors Corp., Circuit Court, Lowndes County, Alabama. Believed by industry observers to be the largest verdict in automotive product liability history (at the time) and the largest verdict ever rendered against GM (the nation's largest automaker), the jury's award included $40 million in compensatory damages for Alex C. Hardy, $10 million in loss of consortium damages for his wife, Thelma R. Hardy and $100 million in punitive damages against GM. Mr. Hardy was paralyzed from the chest down for life when the axle on his 1987 GM S-10 Blazer failed, causing the vehicle to roll over. In the rollover, the Type III door latch on the Blazer also failed, the door opened, and the latch failure allowed Mr. Hardy to be ejected out the open door and paralyzed when he landed outside the vehicle. Plaintiffs proved that GM had been aware that this defect was killing and injuring Americans for at least 14 years but that GM consciously chose not to recall the defective latches or warn the public. Plaintiffs proved GM engineers, lawyers, and executives had privately labeled the performance of the latch as a "problem," "substandard," and "unacceptable," and had quietly settled all such cases and refused to produce the internal documents showing its guilty knowledge until 1994, when the time for NHTSA to force a recall of the latches expired.

GM appealed the verdict and filed a motion for a new trial. The case settled for a confidential amount in November 1996.

$800,000

Lumber Truck

Accident/

Personal Injury

Cash and Structured Settlement (expected payout on $300,000 structured settlement is $1,019,860) - 03/05/96. Thomas v. Ply-Marts, Inc. and Kenneth A. Postell, State Court of Gwinnett County, Georgia. A 54 year-old body shop worker was struck by a lumber delivery truck while riding a motorcycle. The plaintiff sustained a severed aorta, multiple broken ribs, and nerve damage as well as aggravation of a prior back injury and was disabled from resuming the duties of his employment.

$______________

Airplane Crash/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 12/21/95. Bellamy for Braswell, dec'd, et al. v. Unnamed Defendants. A 31 year-old engineer died when a Cessna 414 twin-engine airplane in which he was a passenger crashed in Georgia. Claims were made by the surviving parents and the decedent's estate against the owners of the plane, the pilot and others. The case was settled by the insurance company prior to filing suit, along with the claims brought by other survivors of passengers on the plane. Terms of settlement are confidential at the Defendants' request

$______________

Auto Accident/

Personal Injury/

Paraplegia

Cash Settlement - 10/11/95. Velasquez, et al. v. Fields Appliance Service, Inc., et al. A migrant farm worker was rendered a paraplegic when the van in which he was a passenger was struck from the rear by a vehicle driven by the then president of the defendant corporation. The case was settled with the defendant's insurer prior to filing suit pursuant to a confidentiality agreement.

$______________

Tractor-Trailer

Wreck/Wrongful

Death/Personal Injury

Structured Settlement - 09/29/95. Burt for Compton, et al. v. Major Tractor-Trailer Manufacturer and Trucking Company, U.S. District Court, Middle District of Georgia, Columbus Division. A mother was killed and her young son/passenger sustained a traumatic brain injury when the passenger vehicle they were riding in struck and traveled underneath a tractor-trailer rig making a left turn onto a state highway in the pre-dawn darkness. Claims were made against the trailer manufacturer and trucking company for failing to equip the trailer with retroreflective tape to improve the conspicuity of the rig under nighttime conditions. Claims were also made based on the truck driver's negligence. The case settled shortly prior to trial. At Defendants' request, settlement amount is confidential.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 09/08/95. Bishop v. General Motors Corp., U.S. District Court of Oklahoma, Muskogee Division. Defective GM truck with side-saddle fuel tank design. The mother of a 22 year-old man brought suit when her son was killed by fire after his pickup impacted a bridge. The law firm developed further evidence that GM's defective trucks had been involved in hundreds of incidents which the Court ruled were substantially similar to the Bishop wreck. After all of its trial exhibits were stricken for willful disregard of the Court's numerous orders requiring production of those exhibits, GM elected to settle the case along with three other cases, yet right after the settlement, GM continued to insist to the media that its trucks were totally safe. Amount of the settlement is confidential at Defendant's request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 09/08/95. Moseley v. General Motors Corp. and David Gerard Ruprecht, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Defective GM pickup truck with side-saddle fuel tank design. This case was tried in early 1993 resulting in a verdict of $105 million, including $101 million in punitive damages, the largest verdict in Georgia history and the largest verdict ever against GM (at the time). GM appealed the case and the verdict was overturned, with GM boasting to the appellate court and the press that it looked forward to re-trying the Moseley case. The surviving parents of Shannon Moseley, who burned alive when his pickup truck was struck by a later model GM pickup and burst into flames, agreed to settle their case because they were satisfied it had helped to tell the public the trucks were dangerous and "it was time to move on." This was one of four cases GM simultaneously settled on the eve of the trial of one of the cases. The settlement amount is confidential at Defendant's request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 09/08/95. Cockrum v. General Motors Corp., U.S. District Court for the District of Kansas, Wichita Division. Defective GM pickup truck with side-saddle fuel tank design. The surviving parents of a young man brought suit against GM after their son was killed by fire when his motorcycle had an extremely low speed side impact with a GM pickup. This was one of four cases GM settled simultaneously. The amount of settlement is confidential at Defendant's request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 09/08/95. Wilson v. General Motors Corp., U.S. District Court of Tulsa County, Oklahoma. Defective GM pickup truck with side-saddle fuel tank design. The surviving wife brought suit against GM after her husband was killed by fire when the pickup in which he was riding was struck by a trailer that separated from another vehicle. This was the last of four cases GM simultaneously settled. The settlement amount is confidential at Defendant's request.

$90,000,000

Product Liability/

Auto/Rollover/

Quadriplegia

Verdict - 07/07/95. Rodriguez v. Suzuki Motor Corp. and American Suzuki Motor Corp., Circuit Court of St. Louis, Missouri. Defective automobile. Kathryn Rodriguez, 30 years old at the time of this verdict, is a quadriplegic who was paralyzed while riding as a passenger in a Suzuki Samurai that rolled over on February 11, 1990. The case involved the propensity of the Suzuki Samurai to rollover due to an unstable and defective vehicle design. The jury awarded $30,000,000 in compensatory damages and $60,000,000 in punitive damages against Suzuki. Testimony and documents at trial showed that Suzuki developed a "crisis plan" to deal with the Samurai rollover problem more than 3 months before the first Samurai was sold in the United States. Suzuki documents further showed that it knew the Samurai, because of its narrow wheelbase, was "bound to turn over." General Motors evaluated a Samurai-type vehicle in the early 1980's and rejected the idea of importing it into the United States because the vehicle would have "unacceptable rollover tendencies." After GM refused to import and market the Suzuki vehicle, Suzuki decided to sell the vehicle in the United States without making the significant engineering changes recommended by GM. The $90,000,000 verdict is the largest judgment rendered in any Samurai rollover case in the United States. More than 240 cases have been filed against Suzuki, and more than 7,000 people have been injured and 147 killed in Samurai rollover accidents since Suzuki started selling the vehicle in the United States. Prejudgment interest of $37,104,657.53 was awarded by the Court for a total judgment of $127,104,652.53.

Suzuki filed an appeal with the Missouri Supreme Court. The first verdict was overturned, and the case remanded to the trial court for a new trial. See entry at October 31, 1997 for information on the second trial.

$1,650,000

Wrongful Death

Settlement - 05/08/95. McNally v. Archer Western

Contractors, Ltd., Georgia World Congress Center Authority, Georgia Department of Transportation, et al. , State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Wrongful death action against construction company hired to build the viaduct and plaza adjacent to the Georgia Dome. Clients' daughter, Dawn McNally, was struck by a falling I-beam as she entered the Georgia Dome prior to a professional football game in December 1993. A recent UGA graduate, Dawn was 24, single and working part-time when the accident occurred. Investigation established that the I-beam had not been welded into place as it should have been. Dawn died almost instantaneously.

$______________

Product Liability/

Eosinophilia-Myalgia

Syndrome

Cash Settlement - 02/14/95. Rainwater v. Showa Denko, Inc., et al., U.S. District Court, Northern District of Georgia, Atlanta Division. Pharmaceutical product liability case against major Japanese pharmaceutical company. Client became seriously ill after taking contaminated tablets of L-Tryptophan, a substance classified by the FDA as a food but marketed and sold in the U.S. for its medicinal qualities. Plaintiff suffered EMS (Eosinophilia-Myalgia Syndrome), an inflammatory condition which affects the connective and muscle tissue causing extreme pain, physical debilitation, nerve degeneration, and in some cases, death. Plaintiff has severe EMS which will affect her for the remainder of her life. Amount of settlement is confidential at Defendants' request.

$1,000,000

Truck Wreck/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 02/13/95. Hanlon v. Harry's Farmers Markets, Inc., et al., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Wrongful death of a 32 year-old truck driver who was killed when an employee of the defendant corporation ran a red light at a busy intersection. The case was settled by the Defendant's insurer shortly prior to trial.

$1,250,000

Wrongful Death

Structured Settlement - 02/01/95. Unnamed Plaintiff v. Unnamed Defendant, State Court of DeKalb County, Georgia. Wrongful death of child using recreational equipment. Plaintiff insisted that Defendant adopt a safety plan to prevent future injuries as a term of settlement. Estimated payout on $400,000 structured settlement is $3,136,265.

$______________

Fraternity Hazing/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 01/19/95. Harris v. Unnamed Fraternity, et al., State Court of Cobb County, Georgia. A 19 year-old college student died as a result of being hazed by members of a fraternity in which the victim sought membership. Suit was brought against the fraternity, national and local chapters, the college, and the individual members involved. In addition to the monetary recovery, the fraternity took significant remedial action as a condition of settlement to prevent the opportunity for further hazing of prospective members throughout the U.S. Amount of settlement is confidential at Defendants' request.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Post-Collision Fire

Cash Settlement - 12/16/94. Cameron v. General Motors Corp., U.S. District Court of South Carolina, Columbia Division. Defective GM pickup truck with side-saddle fuel tank design. Two brothers were burned, one very severely, after their GM truck burst into flames after impact with an automobile which had spun out of control and crossed into the Camerons' lane of travel on a Kansas highway. The federal judge ordered that GM's lawyers be deposed with respect to a GM project in the early 80's to "retrieve, catalogue, and review" documents pertinent to such cases. A GM engineer swore that documents were destroyed by GM. In this case, counsel for Plaintiffs commenced the investigation into whether GM's "privilege" claims, advanced as a reason to conceal documents from Plaintiffs, were waived under the "crime-fraud exception" to the privilege, applicable where the privilege has been used to commit a crime or perpetrate a fraud. The case was settled prior to a final determination of that issue in this case. Amount of settlement is confidential at Defendant's request.

$1,575,000

Tractor-Trailer

Wreck/Wrongful Death

Settlement - 10/27/94. In Re: Estate of Alderson v. Conway Southern Express and Bobby Talley. Robert Alderson, age 27, was killed when his pickup truck was struck by a tractor-trailer owned by Conway Southern Express on 8/20/93. A claim was brought by his common-law wife - settlement was obtained without the filing of a lawsuit.

$965,004

Automobile Wreck

Verdict - 10/21/94. Sistrunk v. Peachtree Pest Control and Freddie May, State Court of DeKalb County, Georgia. A 52 year-old electrician suffered broken ankle and left wrist injuries requiring plates and screws in a road wreck. $40,000 in medical expenses. Case was defended by employer on scope of employment. Jury held both employee and employer liable. Verdict included $900,000 for pain and suffering and $25,000 for loss of consortium. Last offer was for $100,000.

$1,305,000

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 10/14/94. Daniel for Deel, dec'd v. Capital City Machine Shop, Inc., Eaton Corporation & F.H. Westmoreland Hauling Contractors, Inc., State Court of Gwinnett County, Georgia. Wrongful death action brought by the surviving parents of a 12 year-old girl who died when the automobile in which she was a passenger was struck by a wheel and axle, which separated, from a large truck.

$44,466,100

Product Liability/

Auto

Verdict - 10/01/94. Bibbs v. Toyota Motor Corporation, Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc. and Jason Craig Tindell, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Delia Bibbs, a 38 year-old wife and mother of three, suffered head injuries which left her in a coma when her seatbelt unlatched, and the passenger door flew open in her 1986 Toyota van after her van collided with a vehicle operated by Defendant Tindell. Plaintiffs proved that Toyota had actual knowledge of the defects in the seatbelt buckle and the door latching mechanism, yet failed to take any corrective action and failed to warn the public of these known dangers. The jury returned a verdict of $30,000,000 for the pain and suffering of Delia Bibbs, $6,000,000 for her future life-care expenses and $466,100 in past medical expenses and $10,000,000 to Anthony Bibbs on his loss of consortium claim. The verdict represents the largest compensatory damages verdict in the history of Georgia.

$2,050,000

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 08/94. Unnamed Plaintiffs v. Major Automobile Manufacturer, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Wrongful death action brought by the surviving adult children of a 53 year-old father and 53 year-old mother who died when their automobile was involved in a post-collision fuel-fed fire after being struck in the rear by another automobile near Atlanta.

$1,175,000

Wrongful Death

Verdict - 04/08/94. Kyzer v. Metro Atlanta Trucking Company, Inc., Johnny McFadden, and Credit General Insurance Company, Superior Court of Clayton County, Georgia. Wrongful death of 44 year-old wife and mother of two grown children, with no economic losses. Plaintiffs proved that dump truck was speeding and had unsafe equipment. Verdict included an award of $50,000 for pre-impact fright, shock and terror.

$900,000

Tractor-Trailer/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 03/24/94. Williams v. N.K. Hurst Co., Inc., et al., U.S. District Court, Middle District of Georgia, Columbus Division. Wrongful death of an 18 year-old high school student caused when tractor-trailer traveling at excessive speed approached a minor collision and overturned, pinning the decedent and causing his death.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Post-Collision

Fire

Cash Settlement - 03/18/94. McKinley, et al. for Marlow, dec'd v. General Motors Corp., U.S. District Court, Northern District of Georgia, Atlanta Division. Defective GM pickup truck with side-saddle fuel tank design. Both parents of adult plaintiffs burned to death after impact with another vehicle when the fuel tank on their GM pickup ruptured and the vehicle burst into flames. Eyewitnesses attempted to help the victims escape but were driven back by the flames. The efforts of this law firm to further develop evidence that GM knew of the dangers of the fuel tank location design used in these trucks prior to first sale of trucks with the defective fuel tank location continued in this case. The federal judge ordered that GM's General Counsel be deposed, but the case was settled by the clients prior to that deposition. Amount of settlement is confidential at Defendant's request.

$______________

Product Liability/

High Rise Building

Fire/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 03/21/94. Chandler, et al. v. Gencorp, Inc., Crescent Wallcoverings, Inc., Square D Company and Lightolier, Inc., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Defective electrical system, toxic wall coverings and building materials led to the initiation and rapid spread of fire. Plaintiffs included the surviving spouse of a tenant who suffered smoke inhalation injuries and survived the fire. Plaintiffs proved that Square D Company's electrical bussway system was known to be prone to electrical arcing, which would in turn produce a conflagration of heat and flames. As a result of this arcing in the electrical bussway, wall covering manufactured by Gencorp, Inc. combusted and spread the fire down the hallway of the building's 6th floor within seconds, emanating toxic smoke which injured and killed plaintiffs. Plaintiffs proved that Gencorp, Inc. had actual knowledge of the dangerous characteristics of the subject wall covering and further proved that said wall covering was banned within the industry before it was sold by Gencorp's distributor, Crescent Wallcoverings. Plaintiffs further proved that the spread of the fire was accelerated by plastic lenses utilized by Lightolier in the hallway. Amount of settlement is confidential at Defendants' request.

$475,000

Dump Truck/

Trucking Collision

Structured Settlement (estimated payout is $779,325) - 02/04/94. Lasseter v. M&M Trucking Company, Inc. and Curtis Provost, Circuit Court of Russell County, Alabama. A 29 year-old construction worker was run over by a dump truck on a construction site resulting in orthopedic injuries, nerve damage and permanent partial disability.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Rollover

Cash Settlement - 01/10/94. Malautea v. Suzuki Motor Corp., U.S. District Court, Southern District of Georgia, Savannah Division. A 39 year-old police officer suffered permanent brain injury when his Samurai rolled over after an intersection collision. Default judgment had previously been entered by District Court judge due to Suzuki's calculated concealment of evidence in violation of court orders. There had been over 130 Samurai rollover cases filed in the U.S. before this case was first filed. Plaintiffs proved in this case, for the first time, that General Motors had rejected Suzuki's request that GM import the Samurai into this country because GM found the vehicle would have "unacceptable rollover tendencies." Suzuki's response was to import and sell the vehicle anyway. Plaintiffs proved in this case, for the first time, that at the same time Suzuki was telling the government (NHTSA) that the Samurai did not have a rollover defect, it had contracted with Lotus of Great Britain to evaluate that very problem in the Samurai and advise Suzuki and GM how that problem could be remedied in the 'next generation' vehicle which Suzuki and GM planned to sell if the rollover problem could be remedied. Suzuki ignored the findings by Lotus. Plaintiffs proved in this case, for the first time, that NHTSA's refusal to conduct a defect investigation of the Samurai was politically motivated and that Suzuki's campaign to prevent that investigation reached all the way to the White House. The default judgment was affirmed by the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which found that Suzuki had compounded its discovery abuse in the District Court by engaging in "bold falsehoods" before the Appeals Court.

$630,000

Automobile Wreck/

Insurance Bad Faith

Structured Settlement (estimated payout $1,218,000) - 12/30/93. Mock v. Mangosing, et al., Superior Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Defendant driver with $15,000 minimum insurance ran a red light, causing Plaintiff to sustain head injury. Insurer refused to defend or pay limits, resulting in an eventual bad faith claim whereby Dairyland Insurance Company ultimately paid the referenced sums to satisfy Plaintiff's judgment along with associated claims made against Dairyland by its insured.

$______________

Premises Liability

Cash Settlement - 11/01/93. Anderson v. Radisson Hotel Corp., U.S. District Court, Southern District of Georgia, Statesboro Division. A 29 year-old female was assaulted due to inadequate hotel security while attending a trade show at Defendant's Atlanta hotel. Amount of settlement is confidential at Defendant's request.

$______________

Railroad Crossing

Collision/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 10/29/93. Causey v. CSX Transportation Inc., et al., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Plaintiff, a 72 year-old consulting engineer, was killed in an automobile Death collision at a railroad crossing with defective sight distance and no active warnings. Amount of settlement is confidential at Defendant's request.

$725,000

Automobile Wreck

Cash Settlement - 09/21/93. Russell v. Mannesmann Demag Corp., et al., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. 71 year-old Plaintiff suffered a broken leg and other injuries when Defendant's delivery truck turned in front of her vehicle.

$3,000,000

Product Liability/

Auto/Rollover

Cash Settlement - 09/08/93. Guinn v. Suzuki Motor Corporation, et al., U.S. District Court, Southern District of Georgia, Brunswick Division. 16 year-old Monica Guinn was killed when the 1987 Suzuki Samurai in which she was a passenger collided with a Jeep Wrangler, tripped and rolled over. A narrow track width, high center of gravity, and unsafe handling characteristics predisposed the Samurai to an unreasonable risk of rollover. Evidence showed Suzuki Motor Corporation knew of the rollover problems in the Samurai prior to shipment to this country for sale and had fraudulently advertised the Samurai to the public as being safe for operation on public highways.

$______________

Dram Shop/

Wrongful Death/

Personal Injury

Cash Settlement - 09/02/93. McGray, et al. v. Hooters of America, Inc., Mark Alan Bowling, et al., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Dram shop action against Hooters' enterprises as a result of a patron becoming intoxicated at a Hooters bar and then causing a head-on collision resulting in the death of a 29 year-old female and injuries to her minor daughter passenger. Amount of settlement is confidential at Defendant's request. Additional sums were recovered from defendant motorist and underinsured motorist carrier.

$700,000

Dump Truck/

Auto Collision/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 08/15/93. Amos, et al. v. Maxey Brothers, Inc., et al., Superior Court of Oconee County, Georgia. Wrongful death claims for 98 year-old woman and 72 year-old daughter resulting when dump truck failed to yield right of way.

$9,800,000

Civil Rights/Slander/

Tortuous Interference

With Business Relations

Cash Settlement - 08/06/93. Wall, et al. v. Gwinnett County, Steven F. Schildecker, Wayne C. Bolden, Dairell W. Davis, and Phil C. Gallacher, Individually and as Officers of Gwinnett County Division of Police Services, U.S. District Court, Northern District of Georgia, Atlanta Division. In February 1990, the Wall family owned and operated six businesses at which Gwinnett County Police, accompanied by IRS investigators, conducted a massive search operation and seized more than 100 boxes of personal and business records. The Walls contended the searches violated their Fourth Amendment rights and that police made slanderous statements with the intent to inflict business injury. The Walls suffered emotional distress, injury to reputation, loss of an interest in a cable television franchise in England and were financially unable to continue to operate businesses in existence at the time of the search. Settlement consisted of $6 million initial payment with the balance to be paid over three years.

$1,750,000

Tractor-Trailer

Wreck/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 07/12/93. Hutcherson v. The Progressive Corporation, Progressive Casualty Insurance Company, TABS, Inc., and Carl E. Hicks, U.S. District Court, Northern District of Georgia, Atlanta Division. A 46 year-old truck driver died when struck as a pedestrian by a tractor-trailer rig. Decedent's wife witnessed the aftermath of collision and settlement included claims for her emotional distress in addition to wrongful death and estate claims for deceased husband.

$625,000

Personal Injury

Cash Settlement - 06/15/93. Perciful v. Mack Paul Daffin, Jr. and Sigma Alpha Epsilon Fraternity (Georgia Tech), State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Plaintiff was shot in the eye by Daffin, a member of SAE Fraternity, resulting in the loss of an eye.

$755,000

Large Truck

Collision/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 05/24/93. Turner v. American Builders and Contractors Supply Company, Inc. and Carl Anthony Richardson, State Court of Cobb County, Georgia. A 41 year-old registered nurse died when her vehicle struck a disabled large building supply truck stopped in her lane of travel.

$5,250,000

Product Liability/

Auto

Cash Settlement - 05/14/93. Victim v. Automobile

Manufacturer , U.S. District Court, Southern District of Georgia, Dublin Division. Paralysis and other injuries to 37 year-old man caused by defective door latch and rollover defect which caused him to be thrown from his vehicle during single vehicle accident, with resulting injuries.

$307,500

Tractor-Trailer

Wreck/Personal Injury

Cash and Structured Settlement - 03/15/93. Barber/Vaughn v. Ryder Distribution Resources, Inc. and Old Republic Company. A 13 year-old passenger sustained a fractured hip and lacerations when a tractor-trailer struck his vehicle. ($207,500 cash paid at settlement, plus annuity with $100,000 present cash value for a total eventual payout of $715,225 guaranteed)

$105,241,612.84

Product Liability/

Auto/Post-Collision

Fire

Verdict - 02/04/93. Moseley v. General Motors Corp. and Ruprecht, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. 17 year-old Shannon Moseley burned alive following a side impact collision due to defective fuel system in GM pickup truck with 'side-saddle' fuel tanks. Includes $101,000,000 punitive damages verdict. Plaintiffs proved GM had known for more than a decade that the fuel system was defective and that GM had concealed and destroyed evidence in this case (just as it had in dozens of prior similar cases). Largest verdict ever against GM; one of the largest product liability verdicts in American history.

Verdict overturned by Supreme Court of Georgia and remanded back to trial court for new trial. See 9/8/95 entry.

$1,900,000

Medical Malpractice

Cash and Structured Settlement (projected lifetime payout on $900,000 structured settlement is $3,280,120) - 01/29/93. Plaintiff v. Unidentified Doctors and Hospital, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Claims for loss of income, loss of qualify of life, pain and suffering, premature wrongful death of 55 year-old post-surgical patient who suffered hypotension and arrested because of inadequate treatment by doctors and hospital staff.

$800,000

Motorcycle Wreck

Cash Settlement - 12/23/92. Liddell v. Mansur and K.D. Curry Enterprises, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Multiple fractures to 34 year-old construction worker when his motorcycle was hit by Defendant's moving truck making an illegal U-turn.

$______________

Product Liability/

Auto/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 10/06/92. Willis v. Nissan Motor Co, Ltd., U.S. District Court, Northern District of Georgia, Atlanta Division. Case settled at Defendants' insistence for confidential sum after the jury reached a verdict but before verdict was announced. A-pillar/header assembly on 280ZX with T-top collapsed into driver's face after T-top panel latch failed and panel flew out following side impact by pickup truck. Evidence showed Nissan knew of inadequacy of roof system prior to shipment of subject vehicle to this country. Jurors confirmed that verdict actually reached was $2.75 million.

$1,000,000

Dram Shop Liability/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 10/02/92. Moseley v. Pittman, et al., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Defendant operated bar at which driver became drunk, after which driver caused collision with vehicle driven by 17 year-old decedent who died when his GM pickup truck exploded into flames. Case continued against GM based on defective placement of fuel tanks outside frame rails of pickup truck. Plaintiff demanded payment of policy limits by bar owner's insurance carrier, which then paid this amount as policy limits.

$2,000,000

Product Liability/

Auto

Verdict - 09/10/92. Patty & Neal v. Toyota Motor

Corporation , U.S. District Court, Northern District of Georgia, Rome Division. Sliding floor mats impinged upon brake and accelerator pedals defectively designed to be too close together, preventing driver from stopping car as she exited interstate highway. Car slid under trailer of tractor-trailer unit. Two ladies suffered broken bones and severe soft tissue injuries. Compensatory damages awarded of $1,000,000 each.

$710,000

Wreck/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 05/15/92. Miller v. J&M Tank Lines, Inc., Tractor-Trailer et al., U.S. District Court, Middle District of Georgia, Macon Division. Wrongful death of homemaker following impact with tractor-trailer truck that was illegally parked along residential street.

$327,000

Malicious Prosecution

Verdict - 05/08/92. Naugher, et al. v. Charles H. Smith, John Lewis d/b/a Metro Security Services, and Lloyd Cantrell, Superior Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Conspirators isolated a wealthy elderly widow to control her affairs and to preserve a change in her will leaving bulk of estate to one of the conspirators. Initial efforts of many succeeded in freeing her from control. As a result, she changed her will back to leave all to charity. In the course of those initial efforts, the three plaintiffs were arrested for trying to visit her. All charges were dismissed and this false imprisonment and malicious prosecution case resulted. Verdict included punitive damages for each of the three plaintiffs against each of three defendants. (Case handled and tried with co-counsel William L. Tucker and John W. Denney of Columbus.)

$2,625,000

Medical Malpractice/

Wrongful Death

Cash and Structured Settlement (guaranteed payout on $500,000 structured settlement is $1,447,995, and projected lifetime payout is $7,211,893) - 05/08/92. Collis v. Simpkins, et al., Superior Court of Fulton County , Georgia. Medical malpractice - anesthesia and emergency care. Defendant Simpkins, an anesthesiologist, administered an epidural to a mother in labor, failed to detect symptoms of high spinal injection, and then failed to timely and appropriately respond after belatedly diagnosing the symptoms. Hospital's equipment failed to function properly and physician and hospital staff failed to timely summon additional assistance. Mother and newborn son both died.

$5,000,000

Product Liability/

Auto/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 02/24/92. Surviving Widow v. Major Automobile Manufacturer, et al., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Wrongful death of 68 year-old man caused by defective door latch which failed resulting in occupant ejection during intersection collision.

$5,000,000

Tractor-Trailer

Wreck/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 02/20/92. Nelson v. Floyd & Beasley Trucking Co., Inc. and Robert M. McCall, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Tractor-trailer turned over at interstate north of Atlanta, injuring the parents of our clients, both of whom died at the scene. Demand was made for payment of this amount, as the policy limits, within 30 days, and insurer was instructed that in the absence of such payment, Plaintiffs would not negotiate further but would take the case to verdict and judgment. On the last day, the insurer paid in full as demanded.

$600,000

Product Liability

Cash Settlement - 02/07/92. Anderson v. Pack West Machinery, Inc., Superior Court of Henry County, Georgia. Loss of eye from caustic soda burn caused by defective packaging equipment; failure to guard or to warn. Settled during trial just before closing argument. Pretrial offer was $50,000.

$500,000

Tractor-Trailer

Wreck

Cash Settlement - 11/26/91. Parham v. T.W. Owens & Sons Trucking Company, et al., State Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Injuries to 41 year-old textile worker sustained when van, in which she was a passenger, collided with bob-tail tractor truck after the intoxicated truck driver deliberately slammed on his brakes to cause collision. Plaintiff sustained significant facial lacerations, fractured bones in the face and nasal area and suffers from permanent neck pain. Settlement also included husband's loss of consortium claim.

$937,500

Dram Shop

Liability/Personal Injury

Cash Settlement - 11/14/91. Ballew v. Country Cupboard Foodstores, Inc., State Court of Forsyth County, Georgia. Defendant sold alcohol to a minor who became intoxicated and was involved in a wreck, severely injuring Plaintiff, a passenger who suffered a 'burst' fracture at L5 and other fractured vertebrae and a broken tibia. (Figure includes prior settlement with estate of driver for $150,000.)

$1,681,270

Dram Shop

Liability/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 11/01/91. Sexton v. Country Cupboard Foodstores, Inc., State Court of Forsyth County, Georgia. Defendant sold alcohol to a minor who became intoxicated and was involved in a wreck, killing an 18 year-old minor whose father brought this action.

$2,320,358

Automobile Wreck

Bench Judgment - 09/09/91. Rogers v. Mangosing, Superior Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Automobile wreck at Intersection causing permanent neurological impairment to 20 year-old female who had completed three-fourths of college degree requirements in the field of accounting. Defendant admitted liability and case tried to judge on issue of damages.

$4,100,000

Tractor-Trailer

Wreck

Structured Settlement - (projected payout is $10,533,336) - 07/12/91. Thompson v. Schneider Transportation, Inc., U.S. District Court, Middle District of Georgia, Macon Division. Brain damage and severe physical injury to 38 year-old man in collision between tractor-trailer truck and car; loss of consortium.

$1,250,000

Medical Malpractice/

Wrongful Death

Structured Settlement - (projected payout is $3,596,980) - 07/09/91. Payne v. Dampog, M.D. and Snellville Anesthesia Services, P.C., State Court of Cobb County, Georgia. Wrongful death of 22 month-old child caused by anesthesia overdose and improper monitoring during surgery.

$400,000

Drunk Driver

Wreck/Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 07/02/91. Soule v. McGahagan and Ziomek, Superior Court of Oconee County, Georgia. Wrongful death of 29 year-old graduate student. Suit brought against drunk driver and owner of car he was driving based on negligent entrustment. Defendants' insurer refused to pay $15,000 policy limits, then filed suit against decedent's mother and others seeking a declaration of no coverage. Insurer lost that case before a jury and then paid over 26 times its policy limits to settle case.

$8,501,000

Tractor-Trailer

Wreck/Wrongful Death

Verdict - 06/24/91. Avant v. Roosevelt Kimbrough, Covan World-Wide Moving, Coleman-American Companies, Inc., Evergreen, et al., State Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Wrongful death of a 23 year-old man following impact with a tractor-trailer truck whose driver was 'playing' 'passing games' on a two-lane highway. Decedent drove onto shoulder of road in attempt to evade impact with tractor-trailer truck.

$4,500,000

Product Liability/

Auto/Door Latch

Defect/Rollover/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 04/29/91. Three Plaintiffs v. Major Automobile Manufacturer, et al., Superior Court of ______County, Georgia. Wrongful death of 67 year-old woman and severe injuries to her daughter.

$2,750,000

Premises Liability/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 04/07/91. Chandler v. Glazer, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Wrongful death and punitive damages case against owner of Peachtree 25th Building in Atlanta. Decedent died as a result of fire on 6th floor. Premises liability - inadequate fire safety protection, negligent management of building.

$5,500,000

Premises Liability/

Paraplegic

Structured Settlement - (projected payout $43,800,000) - 03/13/91. LaFontaine v. Edward DeBartolo, et al., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Negligent security at Augusta, Georgia shopping mall led to shooting of 19 year-old lady, rendering her a paraplegic.

$1,000,000

Automobile Wreck/

Wrongful Death

Verdict - 02/15/91. Wylie v. United Distributors, Inc., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Wrongful death of a 32 year-old man after collision with beer truck. (Verdict paid)

$750,000

Automobile Wreck

Verdict - 11/90. Lawhorn v. Van Schaik, State Court of Cobb County, Georgia. Intersection collision. Guest passenger suffered broken leg, arm and pelvis. (Verdict paid)

$25,250,000

Medical Malpractice/

Brain Damage

Verdict - 09/21/90. Clay v. National Healthcare, Inc. & Miller, M.D., Superior Court of Forsyth County, Georgia. Medical malpractice - anesthesia. Inadequate patient care in recovery room causing respiratory distress and brain damage. Defendant corporation had been notified of such problems both by nursing staff and by Dr. Miller before the injury to Mr. Clay, but defendant corporation took no remedial action. Verdict includes $25,000,000 punitive damages against defendant corporation. (Settled after denial of Defendants' post-trial motions.)

$3,250,000

Premises Liability

Cash Settlement - 04/30/90. Unnamed Plaintiff v. LaQuinta Motor Inns, Inc., State Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Premises liability - no security provided in dangerous area. Attack, assault and robbery of guest.

$15,500,000

Drunk Driver

Wreck/Wrongful Death

Verdict - 04/05/90. Bagley, et al. v. Shortt & Wurst Haus, Inc., Superior Court of White County, Georgia. Automobile collision resulting in death of 49 year-old grandmother and her 24 year-old daughter, and injuries to 3 year-old granddaughter. Defendant was driving under the influence of marijuana and hit decedents head-on in their lane of travel. (Appealed and punitive damages reduced.)

$1,500,000

Tractor-Trailer

Wreck

Cash Settlement - 02/28/90. Huguley v. Lumber

Transportation, Inc. , State Court of Cobb County, Georgia. Tractor-trailer wreck resulting in severe facial injuries, blindness in one eye, and a broken femur.

$775,000

FELA

Verdict - 10/19/89. Bowles v. Central of Georgia Railroad Co., State Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Back and neck injuries to trainman suffered in fall caused by oil on running board of defective locomotive. (Settled after verdict.)

$______________

Medical Negligence

Structured Settlement - 08/89. Jackson v. Gatewood, M.D., et al., Superior Court of Sumter County, Georgia. Brain damaged baby case against obstetrician, nurse midwife, and hospital. Delayed caesarian section. Amount of settlement is confidential at Defendants' request.

$700,000

Automobile Wreck/

Wrongful Death

Structured Settlement (projected payout $2,081,668) - 04/24/89. Unnamed Plaintiffs v. Unnamed Defendant, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Estate claim for pain and suffering (only) of severely burned auto wreck victim during six days before death. The parties' names are confidential.

$670,650

Tractor-Trailer

Wreck/Wrongful Death

Verdict - 04/20/89. Brown v. Seaboard Farms of Athens, Inc., Superior Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Improper turn by tractor-trailer truck driver causing collision which resulted in injuries to and death of a 67 year-old retired factory worker. (Verdict paid)

$1,498,381

Tractor-Trailer

Wreck/Wrongful Death

Structured Settlement, (projected payout $4,908,453) - 04/07/89. Sullivan v. Tugalo Construction Company, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Wrongful death of 50 year-old bicyclist caused when truck pulling oversized load without escort vehicle passed decedent and blade of bulldozer being hauled on lowboy hit decedent in neck. Negligent entrustment and hiring - driver had long history of reckless driving; proved inadequate safety program.

$1,342,091

Medical Malpractice

Structured Settlement, (projected payout $13,857,729) - 01/06/89. Bowling v. Mazo, M.D. and Biggerstaff, M.D., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Brain-damaged baby case brought against obstetrician and pediatrician. Failure by obstetrician to timely and properly resuscitate; failure by pediatrician to properly diagnose and treat respiratory distress. Result was prolonged oxygen deprivation, leaving newborn brain-damaged, resulting in severe cerebral palsy.

$500,000

Tractor-Trailer

Wreck

Cash Settlement - 09/29/88. Hughes v. National Service Lines of New Jersey, Inc. and Michigan Mutual Insurance Co., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Tractor-trailer wreck - soft tissue injuries to spine and suspected permanent neurological impairment.

$1,310,001

Diversion of Patient/

Wrongful Death

Verdict - 09/23/88. Estate of W.H. O'Kelley v. Gwinnett County Hospital Authority and Metro Ambulance Service, Inc., State Court of Cobb County, Georgia. Wrongful diversion of patient by Hospital Authority, operation of unsafe helicopter by Metro. Proved Hospital Authority had a policy of diverting patients to its own hospitals in order to generate admissions and revenues. Plaintiffs sought nominal and punitive damages only. $1,305,000 punitive damages.

$900,000

Defective Street Design

Cash Settlement - 08/23/88. Williams v. Columbus Consolidated Government, State Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Nuisance/defective street design - limited sign distance resulting in vehicle collision between Plaintiff's motorcycle and a pickup trick. Permanent neurological impairment.

$875,000

FELA

Verdict - 08/03/88. Swindle v. Central of Georgia Railroad, State Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Shoulder and neck injury. Proved Defendant conducted investigation to try to prove this exemplary employee had falsified accident report - but failed and then withheld results of that investigation. The verdict was for the amount requested.

The verdict was reversed on appeal; case retried; and settled.

$290,330.89

Business Tort

Verdict - 07/22/88. Thomas Supply Co., Inc. v. Lanier, Huffman & Robinson, Superior Court of Forsyth County, Georgia. Wrongful interference by insurance agent with Plaintiff's insurance contracts, conversion of $5,418, and slander. $279,180.60 for punitive damages.

Verdict reversed on appeal, damages reduced and settled.

$1,250,000

Medical Malpractice/

Wrongful Death

Verdict - 07/15/88. Cartwright v. Piza, Superior Court of Baldwin County, Georgia. Medical malpractice in vascular surgery by physician alleged to be unqualified to do the surgery. Wrongful death of 58 year-old correctional officer. $250,000 punitive damages. (Verdict paid).

$550,000

Tractor-Trailer Wreck

Verdict - 06/28/88. Davis v. Great Southern Wood Preserving, Inc., U.S. District Court, Middle District of Georgia, Columbus Division. Broken jaw and lacerations in tractor-trailer collision. $350,000 punitive damages. Tractor-trailer speeding around curve - canvas straps securing load of lumber broke - lumber crashed into Plaintiff's pickup truck. Proved knowing violation of Alabama law regulating method for securing loads on flatbed trailer (Verdict paid).

$500,000

Automobile Wreck

Verdict - 05/15/88. Miller v. Allied Builders, Inc., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Auto collision. Ruptured disc. (Verdict paid).

$2,400,000

Medical Malpractice/

Cauda Equina Syndrome

Cash Settlement - 04/14/88. Flemming v. Kaufmann, M.D. and Cobb County Kennestone Hospital Authority, Superior Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Medical malpractice in neurosurgery by physician alleged to be incompetent. Plaintiff proved Hospital's knowledge of physician's incompetence through histories of over 50 patients treated previously by physician. Damages - Cauda Equina Syndrome.

$522,303.03

Business Fraud

Verdict - 04/14/88. Johnson v. Citizens Bank of Ball Ground, et al., Superior Court of Gwinnett County, Georgia. Bank fraud - fraudulent misrepresentation of assets of prospective purchaser of a business, resulting in Plaintiff taking unsecured $70,000 personal note from purchaser. $360,000 punitive damages. (Reversed on appeal).

$415,000

Insurer Bad Faith

Cash Settlement - 03/88. McWilliams v. International Indemnity, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Delay in paying optional No-Fault PIP benefits.

$30,256,768

Tractor-Trailer

Wreck/Wrongful Death

Verdict - 02/25/88. Hilliard v. Ocilla Industries, et al., State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Wrongful death of 29-year-old wife and factory worker. $28.5 million in punitive damages. At the time - largest verdict or settlement in Georgia's history. 'Pierced the corporate veil' to preserve venue. Proved Defendant had no safety program; proved management's knowledge of gross defects in tractor truck and pattern of using defective tractor trucks; proved that management bought radar detectors for its tractor-trailer trucks. (Case settled after verdict.)

INJUNCTION

Environmental Law/

Hazardous Waste

Hazardous Waste Facility - Enjoined - 02/10/88. McCants, et al. v. Neely, et al., Superior Court of Taylor County, Georgia. Taylor County Commissioners' offer of Taylor County land to State of Georgia for hazardous waste facility declared null and void. State's acceptance of that offer declared null and void, and all actions pursuant to that offer enjoined, stopping hazardous waste facility in Taylor County.

$750,000

Products Liability

Cash Settlement - 06/29/87. Storey v. Reliable Hydraulics, Inc., Superior Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Negligent failure to repair lift gate assembly on truck. Back injury.

$200,000

Drunk Driver Wreck

Verdict - 06/27/87. Thompson v. Moore, State Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Vehicle-pedestrian accident where Plaintiff suffered a broken leg.

Landmark appellate decision allowing admission of prior and subsequent similar acts (drunken driving) on issue of punitive damages.

$750,000

Medical Malpractice

Verdict - 03/14/87. McClure v. Anderson, M.D. and Martin, M.D., Superior Court of Hall County, Georgia. Failure to diagnose and treat cancer - pain and suffering as a result. Surgeon and pathologist failed to adequately communicate results of tumor analysis. $250,000 punitive damages. (Verdict paid as part of settlement of this and companion case.)

$1,050,000

Automobile Wreck/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement during trial - 10/28/86. Laney v. Powell, State Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Vehicle-pedestrian accident; wrongful death of 37 year-old store clerk.

$455,000

Medical Malpractice

Verdict - 10/10/86. Liddell v. Gwinnett Hospital Authority, State Court of Gwinnett County, Georgia. $55,000 compensatory damages for pain and suffering of 88 year-old invalid woman, resulting from broken leg caused by nursing negligence, who later died of unrelated causes. $400,000 punitive damages. Proved that for 5 days nurses withheld from physician both the fact they had dropped the patient and the complaints made by the patient. (Verdict paid)

$1,300,000

Automobile Wreck/

Wrongful Death

Verdict - 06/12/86. Waldrep v. McCulloghs, State Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Car wreck; wrongful death of 46 year-old housewife. 'Pierced the corporate veil' to reach insurance coverage of owner of corporation. (Verdict paid)

$2,200,000

Medical Malpractice

Cash Settlement During Trial - 03/05/86. Wilkes v. Wu, Superior Court of Catoosa County, Georgia. Medical malpractice - pediatrics. Failure to diagnose severe dehydration and chemical imbalances resulting in cerebral palsy and mental retardation.

$1,400,000

Medical Malpractice/

Wrongful Death

Verdict - 11/08/85. Ramsey v. Lee, Superior Court of Chatham County, Georgia. Medical malpractice; surgery and post-operative care; wrongful death of 38 year-old machinist. Esophagogastric anastomosis failed following surgery to excise adenocarcinoma, resulting in mediastinitis which went undetected and, after detection, went untreated for 15 days. Resultant infection "rotted" the aorta which ruptured. (Verdict paid)

$411,250

Insurer Bad Faith

Verdict - 07/26/85. Coachman v. International Indemnity, Superior Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Delay in paying optional No-Fault PIP benefits. $400,000 punitive damages. Proved Defendant appealed adverse decision of governing case to U.S. Supreme Court solely for purposes of delaying necessity to pay claims such as this. (Verdict paid)

$463,000

Business Fraud

Verdict - 04/17/85. Henderson v. Royal Coach/Buckner, Inc., Superior Court of Gwinnett County, Georgia. Fraud; defective irrigation system on farm. Located and brought to trial by former dealers for Defendant in Utah and Wisconsin who established that Defendant knew of the defects when Defendant sold the system to Plaintiff. (Verdict paid)

$1,200,000

Automobile Wreck/

Wrongful Death

Cash Settlement - 02/85. Murphy v. Allen, DeKalb County, Georgia. Car wreck; wrongful death of deputy sheriff and wife - struck as they changed tire on a vehicle by speeding car that went out of control. Collected all coverage available within 10 weeks of death.

$970,000

Business Tort

Verdict (Value of Verdict to Plaintiff) - 01/85. Lipscomb v. Cotton States, Superior Court of DeKalb County, Georgia. Extinguishing debts in that amount and canceling security deeds, plus $25,000 nominal damages verdict for Plaintiff. Proved Defendant had accepted a property from co-signer in satisfaction of debt, despite attempts by Defendant to conceal that intent.

$450,000

Tractor-Trailer Wreck

Verdict - 06/20/84. Clark v. Roadway Express, et al., Superior Court of Harris County, Georgia. Three vehicle collision, including tractor-trailer; knee injury. $100,000 punitive damages. Only $15,000 was offered. Trial court granted JNOV and provisional new trial to Defendant tractor-trailer company, which decisions were reversed on appeal. (Verdict paid)

$900,000

Medical Malpractice

Cash Settlement - 12/83. Phillips v. Unnamed M.D., Superior Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Medical malpractice - failure to monitor Gentamicin administration after surgery and failure to control bleeding after surgery which together caused permanent kidney failure.

$4,200,000

Malicious Prosecution

Verdict - 12/82. Bishop v. Georgia Kraft, et al., Superior Court of Meriwether County , Georgia. $4,000,000 punitive damages. Proved Defendant concocted criminal charges against Plaintiff as part of deliberate written plan to discredit Laborers' Union and bust strike then underway. Plaintiff was union steward and chairman of union negotiating committee. (Reversed on appeal, then settled.)

$700,000

Private Nuisance - Blasting

Verdict - 10/82. Smith v. Florida Rock, Superior Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Blasting nuisance - $500,000 punitive damages. Defendant quarry knowingly and for years blasted rock onto Plaintiffs' property causing loss of use and enjoyment of that property. Proved Defendants did so to save money - more prudent blasting would increase production costs. (Settled after verdict)

$4,700,000

Medical Malpractice/

Quadriplegia

Verdict - 09/16/82. Revis v. Lee, et al., Superior Court of Fulton County, Georgia. Medical malpractice - failure to diagnose spinal fracture; quadriplegia. $960,000 punitive damages. At the time, the largest verdict in Georgia history and Georgia's first multi-million dollar verdict. 'Pierced the corporate veil' to reach assets of hospital chain that owned shell 'management' corporation; held Defendant hospital and management companies liable for retention of known incompetent physician; proved causation based on lay witnesses' description of physical capabilities at various pertinent times. (Settled after verdict)

$189,000

Private Nuisance - Flooding

Verdict - 06/82. Smith v. Columbus, Georgia, et al., State Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. Flooding nuisance, special damages of $23,000, balance of recovery was for loss of use and enjoyment. Held municipal corporation responsible for generally allowing unrestricted upstream development which increased flooding risk. (Verdict paid)

$565,000

Private Nuisance Flooding

Verdict- 05/81. Thompson v. Central of Georgia Railroad, Ray M. Wright, Inc. and Columbus, Georgia Consolidated Government, State Court of Muscogee County, Georgia. $400,000 punitive damages against Defendant railroad developers. Proved defendant developer caused increased runoff from upstream developments, defendant city allowed that unrestricted development, and defendant railroad railed to increase size of downstream culverts under tracts despite notice of flooding caused by inadequate culverts. (Settled after verdict).

Georgia Court of Appeals - 10/22/80. Plaintiff's counsel in Jones v. State Farm. Optional No-Fault PIP benefits; decision resulted in payment of over $100 million to injured victims of automobile accidents in Georgia. Jim Butler served as Chairman of Georgia Trial Lawyers Association Special Jones Committee and appeared as Amicus Curiae in several cases that sustained the Jones theory.