HARMS & HARRIGAN, LLP 2016 – A Year in Review – Part II

In the first part of our highlights of 2016, we focused on three of our practice areas, Estate Planning, Estate Administration and Guardianship. This second part will focus on 2016 highlights from our personal injury and our insurance coverage practice areas.

Personal Injury – With the knowledge gained from twenty years of personal injury experience as both an insurance civil defense attorney and as a plaintiff’s attorney, we were able to settle a personal injury case on behalf of our elderly client without resort to filing suit in a motor vehicle accident case. The client sustained a fractured humerus (left shoulder), a closed head injury, contusions of the right knee and lumbar strain. Being in her 90’s, she did not want to get involved in a prolonged litigation or have to appear in court if at all possible. With the knowledge of the claims settlement practices of insurance companies, we were able to resolve her case without resort to litigation for an amount more than hoped for by our client. Our client was very happy with the amount she received and, she was grateful that she had minimal involvement and was able to focus her attention on her recovery from her injuries.

We also represented a defendant in a motor vehicle accident case where a vehicle involved in a multi- vehicle accident was previously owned by our client. Our client had sold the vehicle over six months prior to the accident. Unfortunately, the buyer of the vehicle never registered the vehicle and was driving with unauthorized plates. Our client was sued based upon still being listed as the owner of the vehicle in DMV records. There were eight other persons or entities being sued, so attempting to get the suit discontinued as to our client, took a focused effort. We were able to prove our client had sold the vehicle prior to the accident and that our client had nothing to do with the accident. The suit was ultimately discontinued against our client.

Insurance Coverage Claims and Litigation – We were retained by a company which provided superintendant (cleaning) services to various residential buildings in New York City who was being sued by a resident of one of those buildings. The resident alleged that she slipped and fell on a wet floor causing her serious personal injuries. She sued the building owner and various contractors.

Our client, who owned two different businesses, was denied coverage for the lawsuit by its insurance company. We were able to represent our client in the personal injury litigation as well as represent our client in its claim for insurance coverage against the insurance broker and the insurance carrier. We were ultimately able to work with the insurance broker and convinced the insurance carrier to agree not only to cover our client for the lawsuit, but also to pay all of our client’s legal fees and expenses. Needless to say, our client was extremely happy with the result.

We will continue to provide 2016 summaries from our other practice areas in the weeks to come. Of course, if you are interested in speaking to us regarding Personal Injury, Insurance Coverage Claims and Litigation or any of our other practice areas, please call or email us!


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