Boat Malfunctions Cause Young Girl Serious Brain Injury in Accident, Part 3 of 3

The following blog entry is written to illustrate how a brain injury lawsuit could develop and resolve. Reviewing this summary should help potential plaintiffs and clients better understand how parties in personal injury cases present such issues to the court.

(Please also note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this brain injury lawsuit and its proceedings.)


According to Plaintiff One: Demand: $6 million in December 2008. Prior to trial commencing, the demand was $8 million, and during trial the demand went to $14 million. Offer: XYZ made no offers in response to the statutory demands. XYZ then made a statutory offer before trial for $1.5 million. The time to accept that offer expired before trial. At the time of trial, XYZ indicated that was the extent of its offer. During settlement conversations during trial, XYZ never came off of its $1.5 million offer. Defendant tendered his $1 million policy prior to trial. The tender was not accepted. Plaintiff Two Demand: Plaintiff Two made a demand for $200,000 in December 2008.


According to Plaintiff: Plaintiffs’ liability engineering experts, Kim Lyle and Evan French, opined that there was no rational basis from an architectural/engineering perspective for these design features and that the risks of the design had no cognizable benefits. Plaintiffs’ warning expert, Bob Kalma, testified that XYZ failed to provide warnings of any kind to the operator or passengers about proper weight distribution or the risks of overloading the bow. Plaintiffs’ experts Lyle and biomechanical engineer Dr. Ted Hamm also testified that the expanded bow lacked sufficient handrails to provide a chance of preventing being washed overboard; no handrail was within reach of Plaintiff One, who was seated at the very front of the vessel. Defendant’s expert Ryan Thomas admitted that the capacity number provided by XYZ Company was incorrect and should have been 16 people or 2,224 pounds.

For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.

According to Plaintiff: Prior to trial, a settlement was achieved with defendant LMO, the distributor of the boat where Defendant purchased it. The matter settled shortly before trial for $500,000 for both plaintiffs. With the determination by the jury of a defect, the insurer for the distributor has indicated it intends to get the $500,000 settlement from the XYZ insurer. The complaint was filed on September 1, 2006.
Verdict/Judgment: Plaintiff
Verdict/Judgment Amount: $31,500,000
The jury apportioned liability 80 percent to defendant XYZ Company and 20 percent to Defendant. The jury voted 10 to 2 as to defect; 11 to 1 as to defect causing the injury; 12 to 0 as to damages.
Trial Type: Jury
Trial Length: 49 days
Deliberations: 2 1/2 days
Jury Poll: Mixed poll
For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.

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