$27.9 Million Jury Verdict ― Automobile Accident
Attorneys Michael Noone and Scot Goldberg represented a young married couple in a case involving devastating injuries to one of the clients. The couple was involved in an automobile accident, which occurred when another driver ran a stop sign and crashed into their vehicle. As a result of the accident, the husband was rendered as quadriplegic.
Prior to the trial, in this case, the highest offer by the defense was $1 Million. At the end of the 3-day trial, the jury returned with a verdict of just under $28 Million.
The clients were quoted in the local media as saying, “I think I owe an enormous debt of gratitude to this team” and “I would say that justice has been done.”
The verdict is believed to be the highest in Lee County history in a case in which a defense was presented on behalf of the at-fault party.
$12.5 Million Settlement ― Spinal Cord Injury
Goldberg Noone Abraham Reaches $12.5 Million Settlement for Veteran with Spinal Cord Injury
Goldberg Noone Abraham, reached a settlement just a few weeks before trial on a case in which a dump truck left our client with catastrophic injuries.
Our client was driving on a rural road in southwest Florida one afternoon. The weather was clear and dry as he slowed down to make a left turn into a driveway. At this time, a large commercial dump truck was traveling behind our client at a high rate of speed, when the truck driver suddenly entered the lane of oncoming traffic to pass our client. This resulted in the truck striking the left side of our client’s vehicle as he was making his left turn. The horrific impact of the crash sent our client’s minivan into a ditch on the west shoulder of the highway.
Our client was airlifted to Lee Memorial Hospital, where he underwent emergency surgery and was thereafter rendered a complete quadriplegic at the C4 level. This condition tragically left him with no motor or sensory function below the C-4 level.
The injuries from this crash took away our client’s ability to speak, so he could not even share his account of the accident with the Florida Highway Patrol. The driver of the dump truck did not speak English and had difficulty communicating with witnesses who stopped to help after the crash. Based on the limited information available, the investigating officer actually found our client at fault and issued him a traffic citation.
However, lead attorney Michael Noone knew that a more thorough investigation was necessary, and quickly hired investigators and accident reconstruction engineers to interview witnesses, inspect the vehicles involved, and preserve other important information. It was discovered that the dump truck driver was talking with friends on his cell phone while he was undertaking the dangerous maneuver that resulted in this crash. In representing clients over the years for crashes involving large trucks, Goldberg Noone Abraham attorneys know that truck drivers are often poorly trained and ill-prepared to handle the long hours, stressful routes, and as a result, end up putting time ahead of safety. Attorneys Scot Goldberg and Elizete Velado ensured the traffic charge was properly dismissed. “The evidence our team uncovered, in this case, confirmed that the dump truck driver was undoubtedly negligent,” says attorney Michael Noone. However, the insurance company did not agree.
Although the family offered to settle for the insurance company’s policy limits, the insurance company declined their offer, and actually denied any responsibility for this crash.
This terrible crash altered the life of our client and those of his family forever. A hard-working and dedicated family man will never be able to support his family again and is now confined to a hospital bed to spend birthdays, wedding anniversaries and holidays.
But as if all that wasn’t horrific enough, “the insurance company’s complete lack of diligence on this case was poor,” Noone says. “First they denied the claim, and then they rejected our multiple attempts to resolve the matter for policy limits.”
Goldberg Noone Abraham retained a renowned medical doctor who is board certified in the field of Spinal Cord Injury Medicine to ensure that our client’s future medical needs would be evaluated. As this crash involved a veteran, Attorney Sheba Abraham worked closely with the United States Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Justice during the resolution of this matter.
Attorney Noone goes on to point out that case could have been settled for much less, had the auto insurance company acted fairly. “Nothing will ever restore the quality of life that was forever stripped away from our client and his family, but we are thankful we could bring some peace of mind to a family fighting to make sure their loved one gets the medical care he deserves.” The entire Goldberg Noone Abraham team of attorneys and dedicated staff worked tirelessly on this case and are proud to see the family gain some financial security as their difficult journey continues.
$5 Million Jury Verdict ― Motorcyclist Wrongful Death
A four-year battle with a large insurance defense firm ended this week with a weeklong trial. Late Friday evening, a Lee County jury returned a verdict in our client’s favor.
On January 9, 2014, our client’s 17-year-old son was on a motorcycle and on his way from school heading to his after-school job. He was traveling with the right of way on Cypress Lake Drive, when a van driven by a 78-year-old woman suddenly made a left turn directly into his path. Our client’s son died immediately upon impact. A passenger in the van also died. The elderly driver told the Florida Highway Patrol that she didn’t see the motorcycle and only saw “black shadows” she assumed were vehicles that were far away when she approached the turn. Nonetheless, the Florida Highway Patrol concluded that our client’s son was speeding and found him at fault for causing the accident.
After resolution with the insurance company could not be reached, a lawsuit was filed. It was immediately apparent after our first meeting with the elderly driver that she had a significant vision impairment. Although the insurance company’s attorneys fought very hard to prevent us from getting her vision records, the court ruled in our favor and allowed us to subpoena these records. We soon discovered that the elderly driver (who had already testified that she doesn’t wear glasses and had no vision conditions) was actually legally blind without glasses, and had severe cataracts that she failed to follow up on despite doctor’s instructions.
The FHP corporal and the insurance company’s retained engineer (who was paid over $120,000 for his work on this case) both attended trial and pointed the finger at the 17-year-old. The defense maintained their denial of any fault, but the jury was not convinced.
On Friday, August 31st, the Lee County jury found the elderly driver 85% responsible and awarded $5,000,000 in damages to our client for the loss of his son.
After four long years, our client’s son was finally vindicated. It’s moments like these that make us proud to do what we do. We’re so grateful to be part of the Goldberg Noone Abraham law firm team, and honored for the opportunity to serve such a kind and deserving father.
$3.75 Million Settlement ― Tractor Trailer Crash
In November 2015, our client was driving on I-75 on his way to Arcadia. It was dark out as he made the exit at Highway 17 and came upon the stoplight about 1/2 mile off the Interstate. The traffic light was green.
Sitting at the traffic light was a large tractor trailer rig. The truck was not running, had no tail lights or brake lights, no running lights, and no safety cones or emergency flares were in place.
Our client crashed into the back of the rig.
He suffered a severely burned foot, a large gash on his hand, torn knee cap, internal bleeding and a fractured hip. He also required removal of his spleen and part of his small intestine, and his face had glass embedded in it. He went through multiple surgeries in his effort to begin to put his life back together.
Almost three years later, we were successful in fighting for a judgement of $3,750,000 on behalf of our client.
Personal injury lawsuits can be extremely complicated, and can take a great deal of time to bring to a successful conclusion. The attorneys at Goldberg Noone Abraham are gratified to have been able to help our client receive justice for his serious injuries and the financial compensation he deserved.
$3.3 Million Jury Verdict ― Motorcycle Accident Fatality
On Friday, March 10th, 2017, we finished a week-long jury trial in the case of a 19-year-old North Fort Myers man whose life was instantly snuffed out in a horrific motorcycle crash. As in a large number of motorcycle crashes, a car attempted to make a left-hand turn directly into the motorcyclist’s path, violating his right of way.
The result was catastrophic.
We, as well as the jury, understand that no amount of money will bring back this loving son back to his father. But when someone’s negligent actions cause the death of an innocent person, our legislature has determined that the way juries are to assign blame and compensate the pain and suffering of a grieving parent is to award a money verdict.
All of the attorneys at Goldberg Noone Abraham worked tirelessly for over three years representing this client. Justice takes time, perseverance and tenacity. And our years of effort paid off when, after a week-long trial, a jury found the defendant driver responsible for her negligence and found that a grieving father’s pain and suffering amounted to $3.3 million dollars in past and future damages. That amount will be reduced due to the jury finding Mr. Simpkins was also partially at fault.
$2.3 Million Settlement ― Motorcyclist Wrongful Death
We’ve often said that when you leave your house in the morning to head off for work, you never know what you may encounter while driving. With the traffic congestion and the number of careless or unfit drivers on the road, making it home safely is unfortunately not guaranteed.
These are the traumatic circumstances affecting our client, who like on every other weekday morning, hopped onto his motorcycle to head to his job at a local motorcycle dealership.
That fateful day, our client was waiting behind stopped traffic on Midpoint Memorial Bridge heading into Fort Myers, when a distracted driver of a commercial van failed to observe the stopped traffic ahead and crashed into our client’s motorcycle. The commercial driver was traveling so fast, the crash resulted in a five-car pileup. In fact, through data recovered from the van’s electronic data recorder or “black box,” it was discovered that the distracted driver was actually still applying the gas at the moment of impact.
Following this accident, our client was transported to the hospital in critical condition, with a left leg so injured it had to be amputated. Although every effort was made to keep him alive, our client’s life was tragically ended at just 42 years old, leaving behind his loving wife of 17 years.
The Goldberg Noone Abraham law firm was retained by the grieving widow to bring justice for the senseless loss of the love of her life. Like we do in every case, we immediately prepare to take the case to trial while also exhausting every opportunity to resolve this matter amicably with the insurance company. However, the insurance company undervalued our client’s case, offering just a few hundred thousand dollars to settle the claim. Justice does not always come easy. The Goldberg Noone Abraham team worked diligently for four years conducting witness interviews, analyzing every detail of the homicide investigation prepared by the Florida Highway Patrol, retaining accident reconstruction engineers to inspect the vehicles and roadway evidence, filing motions, taking depositions, researching the hiring and training practices of the company that employed the careless driver, and much more.
As we uncovered more and more during our investigation, it became unimaginable how this individual was ever employed to operate a commercial vehicle. Between the driver’s extensive history of prior driving citations, company authorized use of cell phones while driving, and the lack of meaningful supervision or training, this was a crash waiting to happen.
Wrongful death attorneys Scot Goldberg and Sheba Abraham took the lead on this case and directed the team effort to fight for justice.
“I felt very strongly that this was more than an accident, but a preventable crash, for which the company should be held fully accountable,” said Abraham. “Justice is necessary to remind companies of the importance of safety measures to prevent tragedies like this in the future.”
Our client’s trial was scheduled to begin on December 14, 2018. A few days before, a settlement of $2.3 million dollars was reached.
“Not only did this woman lose her husband in an awful crash, but she endured another 4 years of frustration, not knowing if those responsible would be held accountable,” Goldberg said. “This widow is now a lifelong friend to our firm, and I am pleased our firm was able to help bring some closure to this tragedy.”
Attorney Scot Goldberg represented a young man who was a passenger in a vehicle that was struck by a cement truck, which made an illegal turn. The car caught on fire and the victim was trapped in the vehicle, sustaining third degree burns over forty percent of his body. He also suffered a brain injury from the severe head trauma at impact, along with fractures to both legs. His treatment included emergency care at the local trauma center, followed by multiple surgeries for skin grafting and months of physical therapy. The client sustained permanent brain damage and scarring over a significant portion of his body as a result of his injuries.
The insurance carrier for the cement company had a policy with $1 Million coverage. The carrier offered $250,000.00 to settle the case. Mr. Goldberg responded by notifying the insurance carrier that if it did not pay its limits within 20 days, he would be forced to file a lawsuit against the cement company. On the 19th day, the carrier paid $980,000.00 in settlement of the claim.
$926,000 – Settlement
Attorney Michael Noone was involved in a case in which a woman and her mother-in-law were both seriously injured when a driver ran a stop sign, resulting in a “T-bone” type collision. The young woman suffered neck and back injuries which required four surgeries, and she was left unable to work in her chosen profession for the remainder of her life.
The insurance companies involved in the case initially displayed reluctance to make any meaningful offers to resolve the case; however, Mr. Noone presented compelling information which convinced the insurance companies to pay a total of almost $1 Million in settlement of the case, thus supplying funds to pay the ladies’ past medical bills and compensate them for their pain and suffering, as well as providing the young woman with money for her future loss of earnings.
$650,000 – Negligent Security/ Sexual Assault (Southwest Florida)
DOE V. ABC HOTEL
A middle-aged woman was staying in a hotel in Fort Myers, Florida. One night, while she was sleeping, she was alerted to an assailant attempting to gain entry into her unit. After finally gaining access to the hotel unit, the assailant committed a violent sexual assault upon her. The assailant turned out to be another guest in the hotel who had an extensive violent criminal history. The plaintiff and other guests had previously notified the hotel of the assailant’s disturbing behavior, however the hotel took no steps to remove this guest from their premises. After the lawsuit was filed, the Defendants argued that the sexual assault was not reasonably preventable and even accused the plaintiff of contributing to the assailant’s interest in her. Our litigation team interviewed several witnesses including other guests and prior security personnel. Each witness confirmed that the hotel had knowledge of the assailant’s dangerous behavior and nonetheless risked the safety of its guests by allowing the dangerous individual to stay on the premises. The case was set for trial and settled shortly before in the amount of $650,000.00.
Attorneys Scot Goldberg and Michael Noone represented a young wife and mother who was a passenger in a vehicle being driven by her husband when the at-fault party made a left turn directly into the path of the victim’s vehicle. As a result of the crash, the woman’s foot was nearly severed at the ankle. This injury required multiple surgeries done by a leading orthopedic specialist, followed by a lengthy period of physical therapy and the use of multiple ambulatory aids to enable the woman to walk again.
After filing suit in the case and proceeding toward trial, the insurance carrier agreed to pay their policy limits of $500,000.00.
Attorney Scot Goldberg handled a case in which the victim was a passenger in a vehicle that was turning left when it was struck by another vehicle, which, while traveling at an excessive rate of speed, violated the right of way of the victim and caused a major crash. The victim was admitted to the local trauma center and underwent surgery for repair of hip and pelvic fractures. She then underwent several months of physical therapy and suffered life-threatening complications from her injuries.
The initial offer from the insurance company for the at-fault party was $40,000.00. However, after being presented with a synopsis of the victim’s case at mediation, the case was settled for $480,000.00.
$400,000 SETTLEMENT – TRAUMATIC BRAIN INJURY
Red-Light Runner Crashes into Our Client: A Case Study
In 2014, a woman was a passenger in the front seat of a car driven by a friend. They were in Cape Coral and were proceeding through a green light on Del Prado Boulevard. Just as they were entering the intersection, a negligent driver blew through her red light and crashed into our client’s vehicle, crushing the passenger side, where our client was seated.
The forceful impact caused our client’s car to careen into a third vehicle. The police investigation cited the red-light runner and also discovered that she was driving on a suspended license and without any insurance.
As a result of the impact, our client’s head struck the interior passenger compartment resulting in a loss of consciousness. She was transported by EMS to the hospital, where she was admitted for several days. The CT scans of her head revealed that our client sustained a subarachnoid hemorrhage, a serious head injury. Her traumatic brain injury also affected her memory and left her requiring daily assistance in an assisted living facility.
The vehicle our client was traveling in had what is known as a “Single Limit Uninsured Motorist” policy. This means that all of the people with injury claims would have to fight for compensation over the same limits of the $500,000 policy. When our firm began representing her, it was our job not only to prove that the defendant driver was legally responsible for causing the crash, but also to prove the severity of the injuries our client sustained as a result of this crash. Unfortunately, the insurance company denied responsibility for the injuries our innocent client suffered and attempted to low-ball her with nominal settlement offers, so a lawsuit was filed.
As we got deeper into litigation, the defense attorneys representing the insurance company came up with the theory that our client’s injuries were caused by a cardiovascular condition, instead of the huge impact of the crash. They even hired a neuropsychologist from the University of Florida to testify in this manner.
We determined it would be helpful to retain the services of a well-known and respected medical doctor who is board certified in brain injury medicine. Attorneys Michael Noone and Sheba Abraham, working together on this case, presented the findings of this medical doctor and relayed his adamant opinion that the brain injuries our client suffered were directly caused by this motor vehicle crash.
Our efforts to prove the value of our client’s injuries were successful. When were just a couple months from trial, the insurance carrier finally realized we were not going to back down, and accepted our settlement offer of $400,000.
The trial date was set for August 2019 — which illustrates how long an insurance company will sometimes fight before they are willing to fairly evaluate a personal injury claim. The Goldberg Noone Abraham attorneys are proud of the settlement they negotiated, and our client looks forward to using the funds to assist her in her long road to recovery.
$350,000 ― Motor Vehicle Accident ― Clearwater, Florida
In 2015, attorney Scot Goldberg received a call from a judge in Michigan. She was not calling in an official capacity, but a personal one – her father and stepmother had been involved in a car crash in St. Petersburg, and she was looking for help.
The judge said she had been searching for a respected personal injury attorney to represent her parents. She said that after seeing our website and reading about our success in helping victims of motor vehicle accidents, she was convinced she had found the right attorney.
Scot made many trips to St. Petersburg to meet with the clients. Both the husband and wife were injured in the crash, so this case required negotiating with multiple insurance policies and various coverages in order to obtain adequate financial compensation for our clients. Scot moved quickly and obtained the full policy limits for the husband’s case.
The wife’s case, however, involved some more intricate legal strategies and negotiating tactics.
“We had to take the female passenger’s case into litigation because the insurance companies were not willing, initially, to pay the policy’s limits of $250,000 of Bodily Injury coverage, and $100,000 in Uninsured Motorist coverage,” Scot says.
The wife required several surgeries for her injuries, and Goldberg Noone Abraham was diligent in keeping the insurance carrier well informed throughout each process. “We pushed the envelope in holding the insurance company accountable, and the more we demonstrated the insurance company was aware of the severity of our client’s injuries, the more it put them in a box they were having trouble talking their way out of.”
Through tenacity and perseverance, and in the middle of litigating the case, the insurance companies finally agreed to tender all $350,000 of insurance coverage available. Once they realized that our law firm was not going to back down, and was willing to take this case to a jury trial, they began to reasonably analyze the facts of the wife’s case.
Scot points out that in every single case we take on, there is always one paramount goal: to ensure that the appropriate parties are held accountable for our clients’ injuries and to negotiate aggressively until the case is fairly resolved.
“I’m glad that our clients were pleased with their settlements, and in fact they still keep in touch with me to let me know how they’re doing,” Scot said. “To me, that’s the real measure of success.”
$350,000 ― Motorcyclist Hit By Loose Tire & Rim
On April 5, 2016, at around 6:45 in the evening, a man was riding his motorcycle on I-75, heading southbound. He had a friend who was also riding his bike next to him. Suddenly, a car rim and tire came off of a car that was travelling in the northbound lanes of the interstate. The tire traveled across the grass median and crashed into our client, a retired New York City firefighter and 9/11 first responder.
Fortunately, and thanks to some expert riding skills, the rider was able to maintain control of his bike without going down. He was initially taken to Physicians Regional Medical Center, but the severity of his injuries to his arm required him being airlifted to Lee Memorial Hospital. An emergency open reduction procedure was performed to help repair his shattered right arm.
The attorneys at Goldberg Noone Abraham, were able to successfully negotiate a pre-trial settlement in the amount of $350,000 for our client’s serious injuries.