Personal Injury and Wrongful Death
A “personal injury” case is one in which a person seeks to recover compensation for losses arising from injuries caused by another person’s carelessness or neglect.
Personal injury claims arise from a variety of circumstances, including:
- Automobile collisions
- Motorcycle or bicycle crashes
- Pedestrians hit by vehicles
- Falls caused by unsafe cond•itions
- Dog maulings, bites, and attacks
- Dangerous conditions of public or private property
- Unsafe consumer products or drugs
- Defectively designed or maintained roadways
- Collisions involving public transportation (bus, train, taxi, MUNI, BART)
- Elder abuse or dependent abuse
When the injury results in death, the surviving family members may be entitled to bring a “wrongful death” claim to recover for the loss of their loved one.
Our clients come to us in times of need, having been severely injured or having lost a family member. In those times, our clients rest assured that Emison Hullverson will do everything necessary to protect their rights while they concentrate on healing. As described below, Emison Hullverson has an outstanding record of success helping our clients.
REPRESENTATIVE PERSONAL INJURY AND WRONGFUL DEATH CASES
Personal Injury / Auto v. Auto: $1,025,000 Settlement.
On December 23, 2007, Mrs. K. was driving her car when a vehicle travelling the opposite direction made an illegal left turn directly into Mrs. K’s path. The collision was severe. Despite wearing her seatbelt and the deployment of the car’s airbags, Mrs. K suffered a fractured sternum, three displaced rib fractures, and a comminuted fracture of her heel requiring surgery. Mrs. K spent over a month in the hospital and two months in an assisted living facility and incurred over $225,000 in medical bills. She also lost roughly $70,000 in earnings as a result of her injuries.
The driver of the car that hit Mrs. K carried only the mandatory state minimum $15,000 auto liability insurance policy. Upon initial investigation, it appeared that the defendant driver had no significant assets from which to compensate Mrs. K. Not willing to sell Mrs. K’s case short, Emison Hullverson dug deeper and discovered that although the defendant owned no property in her name and had no other assets that would appear on a standard asset search, she nonetheless had substantial resources in a trust fund which could be used to satisfy a judgment. Working collaboratively and creatively with the defendant’s auto insurance company, the defendant’s private attorney, and Mrs. K’s own auto insurance company, Emison Hullverson successfully and promptly resolved Mrs. K’s claims for a total $1,025,000 without the necessity of litigation.
Personal Injury / Pit Bull Dog Mauling: $535,000 Judgment after Jury Verdict.
A 37 year old woman, Susan H., was walking down a public sidewalk in San Francisco when she was attacked and bitten in the face by two pit bulls that had been left unattended by their owner. The dogs had been previously declared “vicious and dangerous” by San Francisco Animal Care and Control, but had been returned to the owners based on their promise to muzzle and leash their dogs at all times. Despite their promises, the owners ignored their responsibilities and Susan H. was viciously attacked and seriously injured as a result.
Susan H. suffered severe facial lacerations, and related nerve and muscle damage. She underwent extensive emergency plastic surgery, incurred significant medical bills, and was left with permanent facial scarring and inability to feel her bottom lip.
The defendant’s insurance company repeatedly refused reasonable offers to settle the case and never offered more than $35,000. Because this amount was nowhere near the reasonable value of Susan’s claim, Emison Hullverson tried Susan’s case to a San Francisco jury. The jury returned a verdict for $518,988, which included full compensation for Susan’s past and future medical bills, facial disfigurement, and associated physical pain and emotional suffering. With court costs and interest added, the total judgment for Susan H. amounted to over $535,000.
Personal Injury / Drunk Driver / Auto v. Motorcycle: $972,267 Judgment after Jury Verdict.
In November 2007, Keith C. and his fiancée, Nicole M., were riding together on Keith’s motorcycle in Sonoma County when a drunk driver travelling the opposite direction made an illegal left turn directly into their path. The drunk driver had a BAC of 0.26% over three times the legal limit, and was on probation from a prior DUI conviction.
Keith suffered a compound femur fracture and a broken hand. The femur fracture required surgery to install a titanium rod and screws in his leg and Keith incurred over $150,000 in medical bills. Nicole’s injuries were fortunately less severe.
Emison Hullverson successfully settled Nicole’s case for $50,000, the full policy limits of the drunk driver’s car insurance. The insurer, Mercury Insurance Company, unreasonably refused to pay the $50,000 policy limit to settle Keith’s case, resulting in the need for a jury trial. Emison Hullverson tried the case to a Sonoma County jury in April 2010. Based on the jury’s verdict, the Court entered a judgment in the amount $972,267 which included full compensation for Keith’s past and future medical bills, disability, and associated physical pain and emotional suffering.
Wrongful Death / Medical Negligence / Failure to Diagnose Curable Condition: $827,901 Arbitration Award (The third largest arbitration award against Kaiser in California in 2008).
In 2005, Carlton W. was a 36 year old Deputy with the San Francisco Sheriff’s Department and father of two young children. On three occasions between September 2005 and February 2006, Carlton sought medical treatment at Kaiser for signs and symptoms consistent with hypercalcemia – a relatively minor and curable condition. A routine calcium test administered on any of those visits would have detected the condition and saved his life. In violation of the standard of care, however, Kaiser never tested Carlton’s calcium level, and his hypercalcemia progressed undiagnosed and unchecked. On February 14, 2006, Carlton’s critically high calcium level interfered with the electrical conduction of his heart and caused a cardiac arrhythmia that killed him.
Emison Hullverson represented Carlton’s two young children in a wrongful death case against Kaiser seeking to recover compensation for the economic damage and emotional loss caused by the death of their father.
Kaiser denied all liability, claimed that their physicians met the standard of care in all respects, and never offered a penny for this family’s loss. Emison Hullverson retained numerous top experts in endocrinology, cardiology, internal medicine, and economics, tried the case to an arbitrator, proved that Kaiser’s doctors were negligent, and won the case. The arbitration award secured for Carlton’s children full compensation to replace the economic support that Carlton would have provided to them over his lifetime, including money for their education, as well as additional sums for the loss of their father’s emotional support.