Castilla Successfully Represents DUI Insured
In 2010, Hilliard Castilla successfully represented an insurance agency owner convicted of DUI after registering a 0.179 on a blood alcohol test. The plaintiff claimed TMJ injuries as well as a rotator cuff tear and other injuries from the collision which the plaintiff, a minister at a prominent Atlanta area church, claimed prevented him from effectively performing his ministerial duties. The prominent plaintiff’s counsel asked the jury for $1,800,000 dollars plus punitive damages and refused to negotiate after an offer of $300,000 which was extended by the insurer providing coverage for Mr. Castilla’s client. Mr. Castilla told the jury that the plaintiff should receive $15,000 to $20,000 for the rear end collision and, much to the chagrin of the plaintiff and plaintiff’s counsel, the jury returned with a verdict of $16,543 plus $5,000 in punitive damages. The trial was featured on the front page of the October 4, 2010 edition of the Daily Report.
Adelman Obtains Defense Verdict in Fulton County
Jonathan M. Adelman obtained a defense verdict in the State Court of Fulton County. The case involved a clear liability motor vehicle collision. The plaintiff underwent several rounds of epidural steroid injections and incurred medical expenses in excess of $22,000. In addition, the plaintiff claimed lost earnings in excess of $90,000. At trial, Mr. Adelman successfully cross-examined the plaintiff, the plaintiff’s expert economist, and the plaintiff’s treating orthopedist. The pre-trial offer was $25,000. The pre-trial demand was $100,000.
Adelman Secures Favorable Verdict
Jonathan M. Adelman secured a favorable verdict on behalf of a UM insurer in Forsyth County. The underlying accident was one of clear liability. Plaintiff was taken from the scene of the accident by ambulance and immediately began treating with an orthopaedist for complaints of neck and shoulder pain. When conservative measures, including epidural steroid injections, failed, plaintiff underwent a cervical anterior diskectomy and fusion from C4 to C7. The neck surgery was performed within six months after the accident. In addition, plaintiff claimed that the accident necessitated shoulder surgery. The plaintiff incurred medical expenses of $79,000.00 and lost wages of $40,000.00. After deliberating for more than ten (10) hours, the jury returned with a verdict, and judgment was entered for $59,000.00. Plaintiffs’ pre-trial demand was $175,000.00.
Adelman Secures Dismissal in Fulton County
Jonathan M. Adelman secured a dismissal with prejudice in favor of his insured client following an extremely effective cross-examination of the plaintiff in the presence of a Fulton County jury. The plaintiff claimed neck and back injuries and more than $13,000 in healthcare expenses as a result of a clear liability motor vehicle accident. As part of his diligent investigation of the plaintiff, Mr. Adelman obtained a deposition from another case in which the plaintiff denied, under oath, sustaining any real injuries in the motor vehicle collision with Mr. Adelman’s client. When presented with that deposition testimony as part of Mr. Adelman’s impeachment effort, the plaintiff actually asked to confer with his lawyer in the presence of the jury. The request was denied, and the impeachment was successful. After all of the evidence closed, the plaintiff’s attorney chose to dismiss with prejudice in lieu of proceeding with closing arguments.
Adelman Prevails in Favor of Delivery Company
Jonathan M. Adelman prevailed on a motion for summary judgment in favor of a large express delivery company in the State Court of Gwinnett County. The case arose from a motor vehicle collision involving the plaintiff and an independent contractor driver of the express delivery company. The plaintiff argued that the express company controlled the time, manner, and method of the independent contractor’s job duties and, therefore, could be held vicariously liable. Mr. Adelman argued that the elements of control relied upon by the plaintiff did no equate to control of the operative details of the independent contractor’s job duties. Mr. Adelman showed that the independent contractor utilized his own vehicle, picked his own routes, and determined his own hours.
Waldon, Adelman, and Castilla Prevail in Putative Class Action
Russell D. Waldon, Jonathan M. Adelman, and Hilliard V. Castilla prevailed on a motion to dismiss a putative class action against one of the nation’s largest insurers. The putative class representatives claimed that they were entitled to recover uninsured motorist coverage benefits equal to the amounts equal to the amount which their recoveries had been reduced due to medical payments coverages paid. In total, plaintiffs sought to recover in excess of $20,000,000.00. In support of the motion dismiss, Mr. Waldon and Mr. Adelman argued that the class failed to meet the condition precedent of obtaining a recovery against the uninsured motorists before proceeding against their uninsured motorist insurer. The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia agreed.