Victim’s family reimbursed for her “conscious pain and suffering”

Careful investigation and expert testimony led to a substantial seven-figure settlement in a case of the wrongful death of a young Pennsylvania woman. A commercial vehicle driving too fast on a two-lane highway plowed into the back of a car driven by the young woman. The impact pushed her car into the opposing lane of traffic, where it was hit by an oncoming SUV.

Stutman Law took up the case for the victim’s estate against the owner and operator of the commercial van. The defendants vigorously argued that the decedent died instantaneously and was not therefore entitled to damages for conscious pain and suffering. To support this argument, the defense located an eyewitness who testified that the decedent failed to display any signs of life immediately after the accident.

Faced with this testimony, Stutman Law secured a tape of the initial 9-1-1 call, which revealed that the defendant’s star witness had called 9-1-1 from a cell phone and advised the authorities that decedent was alive and responsive. Stutman Law then engaged a forensic pathologist and biomechanical engineer to demonstrate how the various collisions had injured the decedent and led to several minutes of conscious pain and suffering. Stutman Law also retained an economist and vocation specialist to demonstrate the most likely career choices of the decedent along with her probable economic losses.

Because Stutman Law was able to establish conscious pain and suffering along with a lifetime of economic losses, the family of the decedent obtained a significant, seven figure settlement without enduring a prolonged trial.

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