Total Payments Will Exceed $20,000,000 ($2,400,000 Present Value) Medical Malpractice (Delay in Delivery at Birth)
Attorney Jim Reed represented the family of a baby girl who suffered permanent brain damage (cerebral palsy) because the Labor and Delivery nurses left the laboring mother totally unattended for more than 40 minutes which is a direct violation of the nursing standard of care. Tragically, just 40 minutes can make the difference between a healthy baby and a little girl who will never walk, never talk, never feed herself, never have a boyfriend, never get married…
In this case, the Labor and Delivery nurses hooked the Mom up to an electronic fetal monitor and then left the Mom unattended for 40+ minutes. Unfortunately, fetal monitors are absolutely no good if no one is there to read the results.…
That’s why the standard of care for labor and delivery nurses requires nurses to review the monitor strips for the first 20 minutes that the mother is placed on the monitor. If all is OK after 20 minutes, the Mom can then be left unattended for short periods of time. If the strips are not OK, then the nurse is trained to immediately intervene and summon a doctor if necessary.
In this case, a careful review of the medical records revealed that the mother had been left totally unattended for the first 40+ minutes she was placed on the fetal monitor. As you might have guessed, the monitor strips were bad meaning that the baby was in trouble and needed immediate delivery. The problem is that no one was in the room to hear read the results and respond to the baby’s cries for help. As a result, the necessary C-section to rescue the baby was delayed by more than an hour causing the baby to suffer profound brain damage (Cerebral Palsy). The baby was rushed from the Corning Hospital to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at the Arnot Ogden Medical Center in Elmira, but the damage was already done. The baby had a permanent brain injury called Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE) which means that the baby’s brain was deprived of oxygen at birth.
As is always the case in medical malpractice cases, this case was very vigorously defended. It was not until 2007, more than NINE years after the baby’s birth in August, 1998, that the lawyers for the malpractice insurance companies finally made any offer to settle the case. And it was not until after Steuben County Supreme Court Judge Joseph Latham actually set a firm trial date, that the carriers finally offered a present value amount of $2,400,000 to settle the case.
By very sophisticated use of annuities, life insurance planning and a Supplemental Needs Trust, the expected payout of benefits to this little girl over her projected lifetime will be more than $20,000,000. It sounds like a lot of money but given the high cost of medical care and the 24/7/365 medical needs of this child over her lifetime, each and every penny will be necessary for her care.
As experienced medical malpractice attorneys know, there is no such thing as an “easy” medical negligence case. No matter how strong your case, the doctors, hospitals and their medical malpractice insurance carriers, defend these cases tooth and nail. They force you to spend year upon year and tens of thousands of dollars (we have invested more than $80,000 in some cases) prosecuting your case. Consequently, there is nothing more satisfying than to resolve a case in a manner that you know will benefit your deserving client for the rest of their lives…
$4,000,000 — Fatal Car Fire Case
Attorney Jim Reed, in collaboration with co-counsel, handled this case that was settled via a confidential settlement agreement which prevents us from disclosing any of the details of the settlement. Jim can say that he was very pleased to have achieved such a substantial result in a case that was aggressively defended for many years. Sometimes hard work and persistence pays off.
$2,500,000 — Rear-end Car Crash Case
Attorney Jim Reed, in collaboration with local counsel in New Jersey, represented a Pine City man who received very serious back injuries when he was rear-ended by a N.J. Transit bus.
The bus driver attempted to blame our client claiming that he stopped suddenly in her path. We correctly argued that it is the obligation of every driver to have their vehicle under proper control for the conditions and that accordingly the bus driver had a legal obligation to avoid rear-ending our client.
The defendant Transit Corp. also argued that there was “only” $1,800 of damage to our client’s vehicle so they contended that this small amount of damage to the vehicle could not have caused his severe back problems. This is a common defense argument and one that simply makes no sense– if a collision is severe enough to bend steel, who honestly believes that the people in that vehicle are not subjected to forces capable of ripping muscles, tendons, and ligaments? Our client’s doctors were ready to address this nonsense argument and explain to the jury exactly how the considerable forces of this rear-end collision caused the injuries to our client.
Just weeks before the scheduled trial, a mediation was held and a settlement of $2.5M was agreed upon by the respective parties.
Attorney Jim Reed represented the family of a baby girl who was deprived of oxygen and suffered permanent brain damage (cerebral palsy) because her Dr’s failed to timely deliver her despite clear signs on the electronic fetal monitor that the baby was in distress.
In preparing the case for trial, Attorney Reed was one of the first lawyers in N.Y. to employ a powerful new tool– the videotaped deposition of the medical witnesses. Initially, the lawyers for the Dr’s resisted videotaping but Reed didn’t take “no” for an answer and he was able to get a court order forcing the videotaping of the Dr’s. Attorney Reed strongly believes that the videotapes showing the damaging testimony of the doctors played a strong role in the insurance company’s ultimate decision to settle this case just before trial.
After trying to settle the case for less than the available insurance coverage, and after Reed rejected a $1.85 million dollar offer, both the Dr and Hospital were forced to pay every penny of their $2M coverage to settle this case just prior to the scheduled trial.
$1,800,000 — Drowning Deaths of Two Fishermen
Attorney Jim Reed represented the families of two Chemung County men who died when they were swept away by rapidly rising waters while fishing in 2010 in the Oswego River. The companies that operated a hydroelectric plant near where the men were fishing failed to timely sound required warning sirens to warn the fishermen about the rising water caused by the operations of their plant.
Witnesses said the warning sirens at the power plant sounded earlier in the day, before the water was rising, but failed to go off when the water rose later, killing the Wellsburg and Horseheads residents.
Attorney Reed filed a wrongful death lawsuit in federal court in the Northern District of NY. Following a protracted mediation process, the case was settled for $1,800,000 by agreement of all parties.
$1,800,000 — Auto Accident (Brain Injured Child)
This case involved a child who suffered severe head injuries while riding as a passenger in a car that was destroyed in a collision with a tractor trailer. The young boy was riding in a child seat but the force of the collision was so severe that the car seat itself was mangled and sadly this little boy suffered severe head injuries.
We hired experts to analyze the future medical needs of the child and we worked with the boy’s parents to fully understand his needs and the services necessary to provide for those needs. In the end we were able to negotiate a settlement that provided the funds necessary to meet the child’s needs.
$1,625,000 — Medical Malpractice (Delay in Delivery of Baby)
Attorney Jim Reed represented the family of a little boy who suffered cerebral palsy as a result of being deprived of oxygen at birth. This case involved the same hospital and several of the same nurses in the first case above. Sadly, we were shocked to learn that despite the passage of several years since the first case, the nurses had received no additional training in fetal heart rate monitoring which is so critical to the safe delivery of babies. We were dumbfounded: how can a hospital continue to deliver babies when its staff is not properly trained?
Initially the lawyers for the hospital and doctors denied any medical errors caused the child’s injuries, but after we hired experts who exposed MANY medical mistakes, their tune changed.…
$945,000 — Car Crash
Attorney Jim Reed represented a man whose car was rear-ended at high speed by a tractor trailer who failed to see a long line of stopped cars. It was a miracle this man survived the crash as his car was wadded up like an accordion. Initially, his injuries did not seem too severe. No broken bones, no horrible lacerations. He just hurt all over. Over weeks and then months, the soreness he thought would just get better if he “took it easy” just got worse and worse. Finally the doctors took MRI’s of his neck and back finding herniated disks in both the neck and back. Three surgeries followed and despite extensive physical therapy this fellow was never able to return to the job he had worked at for 15+ years. After several low-ball offers were rejected, he insurance company for the truck finally agreed to pay $945,000 on its $1million dollar policy.
$750,000 — Plane Crash Case
The Ziff Law Firm represented the family of an amateur pilot who was tragically killed when air traffic controllers failed to advise the pilot of a low altitude warning that was loudly sounding in the control tower. Initially, the air traffic controllers denied that any audible warning had sounded but after grueling depositions of many witnesses, it became clear that a warning HAD sounded but had NOT been reported to the pilot as required by federal regulations. In fact, one witness who originally denied hearing any warning was forced to attend a second deposition where he finally admitted that he had not testified truthfully in his first deposition and that he DID hear the warning. Sometimes persistence pays off!
$680,000 — Dangerous Machine Case
The Ziff Law Firm represented a man whose head was crushed by a huge industrial machine that was negligently designed without proper safety features. Attorney Hayden hired industrial safety design experts who were able to show that the machine could have been easily and inexpensively designed with simple safety features that would have prevented this tragic injury.
$650,000 — Defective Fan Blade
The Ziff Law Firm represented a young man who was working on the engine of his car when one of the fan blades that was not properly affixed to the fan suddenly flew off striking him in the face so hard that the blade literally embedded in his skull. It took a team of Dr’s to extract the blade and left our client with a severe facial scar. The fan manufacturer tried to claim our client did something wrong to dislodge the fan blade but we were able to prove that the fan was improperly designed and manufactured.
$600,000 — Medical Malpractice (Unnecessary Surgery Due to Misdiagnosis)
The Ziff Law Firm represented a man who had a large portion of his penis removed when Dr’s mistakenly and incorrectly diagnosed him as having a cancerous tumor. Tests revealed that the man did not have malignant cancer and plaintiff’s experts testified that the surgery should not have been performed.