One early morning in April 2022, Feldman, Kleidman, Collins & Sappe LLP’s (FKC&S) 45-year-old client from Wappingers Falls, NY was driving to work on Route 9 North in Poughkeepsie. It was still dark as she passed IBM Road. Unbeknownst to her, a tractor trailer had jackknifed and rolled over up ahead and ended up on its side with its unlit bottom facing south in her lane. At 5:23 a.m. she struck the unlit trailer and suffered a fractured sternum and left foot fractures, which required surgery. She ultimately returned to work after 3 months of leave.
At his deposition, the defendant tractor trailer driver testified that his brakes failed, but they were checked by the police at the scene and found to be in good working order. The defense argued that the crash was FKC&S’s client’s fault, and that the tractor trailer was in plain sight in the roadway. Their doctors opined that she had made a good recovery and that there was no objective reason for her to still be experiencing rib pain and foot pain. FKC&S’s client’s doctors were prepared to testify that she had permanent residual issues from her injuries. The case was placed on the trial calendar but settled for $500,000 a few weeks before the set date.