Injured Delivery Person
We all hear about the “gig economy.” Corporate America wants to reap the benefits of labor, without taking responsibility for the results.
We had a case about that.
It started with a call –someone had slammed into the back of our client’s car while the client was on the job. The other driver had tried to pass our client over a solid yellow line because he didn’t see that she was turning. Our client had neck surgery and didn’t know what to do.
We went and met her in a McDonald’s to see if we could help.
Our client hired us, but it looked like there was only minimum insurance available. Certainly not enough to pay what our client was owed for the terror of a significant crash and neck surgery.
During the investigation of the case, our firm found a witness who said that after our client left the scene, a bunch of people from a well-known chain store had come to the other driver’s car and unloaded inventory. This meant that the chain store was potentially on the hook for our client’s damages.
We presented the claim to the chain store, and they basically told us they would do nothing because they weren’t responsible because the driver was an independent contractor.
We filed suit, less than 2 months after signing up our client in the McDonald’s.
In the court case, the defense changed the story: the driver wasn’t working on the clock for the chain store at the time of the wreck. Nevermind-the witnesses who saw that chain store employee came to the scene of the wreck.
The defense gave us only partial documents. Good old-fashioned sleuthing uncovered a problem with their documents. Lo and behold, looks like the guy was on the clock.
The defense changed the story again: the other driver wasn’t their employee. During the driver’s deposition, he admitted that while he wasn’t an employee, he had been disciplined for not driving this route fast enough. Incredibly, the driver testified that he had only been disciplined for not driving fast enough, never for driving too fast, which was especially bad because he had gotten speeding tickets and rear-ended someone else while working for this company.
After developing the proof that the company was on the hook, the case was resolved at a mediation for a confidential amount significantly in excess of the driver’s liability limits.
Workers' Compensation for a Police Officer
Our client was a 30 year veteran for law enforcement officer whose career ended after a tragic shooting.
The officer had worked his way up the chain of command, starting as a patrol officer and ending as a Lieutenant.
On the date in question, our client arrived to work expecting a run-of-the-mill day. Normal patrol work. That quickly changed when he received a distress call from the Chief of Police that the Chief was being attacked by a suspect. Our client’s training kicked in and he raced to the aid of his Chief, who was being attacked by a man wielding a pole with a knife attached to it.
Our client was the first officer to arrive on the scene. The suspect initially tried to flee the scene but then raised his sights on our client. The man started wildly swinging the pole, threatening the officer. Our client pleaded with the man to put down the weapon; however, the man did not and began charging.
Unfortunately, our client had no choice but to fire his weapon in self-defense. The first shot did not stop the man’s advancement, and he fired a second shot that finally brought the man to the ground. Our client immediately called for EMS responders and began performing first aid, but the man would succumb to the gunshots.
The shooting had a tremendous impact on our client, as he had talked to the suspect many times over the past months. While the man had a criminal history with drugs, he had never shown the violence he exhibited on the day of the shooting. Our client would fall into a depression and struggle physically and mentally after the shooting.
30 years on the force, seeing death in its many forms, this was the first time that our client was the cause of it. Buck would eventually medically retire after the shooting.
However, his battle had just begun. The workers’ compensation insurance carrier did not believe that our client had suffered a significant injury. The insurance company was only willing to pay him $25,000.00 as compensation for the health issues that plagued the client following the shooting. Our client no longer had a career and was now struggling at home with depression and PTSD. Our client and his family sought help for us.
We drove out to meet them to fully understand what they were going through. After agreeing to represent our client, we had a mental health professional who was able to provide crucial evidence to show the severity of his PTSD and depression. Throughout the process, the insurance company continued to only offer a low offer to settle the claim.
After a discussion with the client, we made the decision to take the case before an administrative law judge (“ALJ”), who is the final arbiter in the workers’ compensation claim. The ALJ agreed with our evidence and arguments, awarding Buck over $150,000.00 in income benefits for his injuries due to the shooting.
The award tremendously helped the client and his family financially as, unfortunately, this career officer has not been able to return to work since the shooting. The award also helped our client in coping with the shooting as it ensured that he will continue to get the necessary medical treatment and services for the duration of his life.
Our office was proud to be part of this claim and securing needed benefits for a career law enforcement officer which allowed him to fix what could be fixed and help what could be helped.
It was a pleasure getting to know the client and his family throughout the process and to be able to fight against an insurance company that completely undervalued the severity of his injuries.
While this client received a large monetary award, we strive to treat each client like we did with this client and his family.
While we handle 100’s of claims a year, we understand that this is your only claim and we make sure that you get the attention, dedication and service that we gave to this family.