The Philadelphia Personal Injury Law Blog

March 2010 Archives

Distracted Bus Driver: Who's to Blame?

What are the implications of repeat driving infractions for the PA personal injury attorney?   

Does repeat offense create a presumption of fault in a civil case,when that civil case stems from a criminal act? Or, does the fact that certain details were hidden in a previous civil suit negate the responsibility of a school district for having hired a bad bus driver?  

Nearly a decade ago, Frederick Patrick Poust III  was driving while dialing on his cellular phone. As a result, he slammed into a car, killing 2 year old Morgan Lee Pena. 

The Pena family subsequently filed a lawsuit against Poust, settling in the fatal accident case. The truth is that his driving record was only modestly impacted; given that distracted driving laws weren't in place at the time. Furthermore, the lawsuit had a confidentiality agreement which prohibited the family from speaking publicly about the driver. 

Baby Sling Causes Death in PA; Recalled

Parents, beware.  The Infantino "Sling Rider" has been recalled after causing a child to suffocate.  

PA personal injury attorney and spokesperson for the mother of the victim said that the mother became aware that something was wrong when she noticed blood on the bib of one of her twin boys, nestled in the sling. She had gone to the mall to show off her newborn twin boys to her friends.

After she noticed the blood on his bib, Anthoinete Medley went to the ladies room in the mall. Her baby, Nelsir Medley, was unresponsive. He was taken to Thomas Jefferson University Hospital where he was declared dead, believed to have died of suffocation caused by the sling.

Nelsir Medley was only seven weeks old at the time of his death. 

Oprah Settles, One Day After Jury Selection

Earlier this week, the paparazzi rolled in as Pennsylvania personal injury attorneys began jury selection in the Oprah defamation case. Only one day later, Oprah offered to settle the suit, before ever setting foot in a Pennsylvania courtroom. 

Despite the onslaught of reporters, fans and gawkers outside the Pennsylvania courthouse, Oprah was nowhere to be seen on Monday, when jury selection began. 

Famed talk-show host and philanthropist Oprah Winfrey was being sued by the former headmistress of her African girls' school. Lerato Nomvuyo Mzamane filed a defamation lawsuit in a Pennsylvania court, alleging that the talk-show queen defamed her; hurting her reputation and preventing her chances of gainful employment. 

The case related back to charges of abuse at the South African girls' school. Oprah dismissed Mzamane after the allegations of abuse surfaced. Although Mzamane may not have been personally involved with the abuse, Oprah publicly criticized Mzamane.

Contaminated Baby Vaccines! FDA Warning

There's been much hype over the years about vaccinating babies. Although childhood vaccination isn't a common topic of interest to Pennsylvania personal injury attorneys, product recalls are always high on the interest list of injury attorneys.  

Now, the FDA is getting involved and pulling the plug on one common vaccine, Rotarix.  Rotarix is a vaccine commonly used to protect children against rotavirus. Rotavirus is an ailment that causes stomach illness in children. Today, the FDA issued a statement ordering a suspension in the use of GlaxoSmithKline's product Rotarix, alleging that the vaccine is contaminated.

Killer Nurse Victims Awarded Damages in Wrongful Death Suit

Families of the victims of serial killer Charles Cullen may be getting their vindication. The families were awarded a combined $95 million in damages last week in a Pennsylvania court. A Lehigh County jury found that the killer nurse was liable in the deaths of eight patients at St. Luke's Hospital, according to Lehigh Valley Live.  

Emotions in the courtroom were running high after the plaintiffs' PA personal injury attorneys left jurors with these closing words: [W]e want the highest price justice will allow."

The plaintiffs were elated and their PA personal injury attorneys hugged when the verdict was announced, after a three hour jury deliberation.

Oprah to Face Trial in PA for Defamation

Oprah Winfrey had to find herself a good Pennsylvania personal injury attorney. Her upcoming defamation trial will begin in Philadelphia on March 29.

Winfrey, who is known for her extreme philanthropy, is being sued by he former headmistress of a school set up by Winfrey. The defamation lawsuit alleges that Winfrey made comments which defamed the former headmistress of Winfrey's South African leadership academy for girls. 

The plaintiff, Lerato Nomvuyo Mzamane, was suspended and fired from the school, following abuse allegations at the South African school. Winfrey, according to the defamation lawsuit, allegedly made statements claiming that Mzamane knew about the abuse and attempted to cover it up. These statements, Mzamane argues, were made publicly, as they were made at a news conference as well as in private meetings with the parents. 

Woman Sues Doc for Bad Breasts

A PA personal injury attorney filed suit in Bridgewater on behalf of an Ohio client for breast implants gone wrong.

To be more precise, the doctor allegedly placed the wrong implants in the patient. The patient, Brittany Daly of Stebenville, Ohio, claimed that she received implants of the wrong material, as she was under anesthesia.  These implants were not the implants that she had initially anticipated, as per the discussions she had with her plastic surgeon, Dr. Beverly Carl of Bridgewater, PA. 

Apparently, Daly alleges that the wrong implants were delivered to Dr. Carl's office. As a result, Dr. Carl allegedly placed the wrong implants in Daly, without her consent. While the patient was under anesthesia, her fiance was told about the mistake. According to Ms. Daly, her fiance told the doctor to go ahead with the implants, despite the fact that they were not the ones that Ms. Daly and Dr. Carl had originally agreed to. 

PA Personal Injury Attorney Threatened Suit in Rhoades Death

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Although the DUI crash that killed Pennsylvania State Senator James Rhoades occurred over two years ago, the case's is currently on trial. Prior to the filing of the criminal charges last year, Rhoades's son-in-law, a PA personal injury lawyer, threatened to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the driver.

Senator Rhoades was killed in 2008, when his Cadillac was hit by an allegedly drunk driver. The driver, Thomas Senavitis, was charged with vehicular homicide and is currently sitting trial on those charges. Senavits, a mechanic from Kunkletown, denied all responsibility for the crash but claimed that he anticipated criminal charges, given the high-profile of the victim. 

Several months after the accident, Rhoades' son-in-law Christopher Hobbs, in his capacity as a PA personal injury attorney, sent a letter to Senavitis as well as to Senavitis' wife, Dolores, stating that a personal injury lawsuit had been initiated. Hobbs' letter urged the couple to furnish said letter to their insurance carrier. 

Bank of America Forecloses Wrong Home, Kidnaps Parrot

If you're a Pennsylvania injury attorney, you will certainly get a kick out of this story. A woman in Pittsburgh is filing a lawsuit against Bank of America after the bank seized her house in a wrongful foreclosure.

The woman, Angela Iannelli, 46, insists that her mortgage was up to date when the alleged wrongful foreclosure took place. Ms. Iannelli came home to find the locks on her house changed, her utilities turned off, and her furniture damaged.

But worst of all, her pet parrot was missing; taken hostage by the foreclosure contractors hired by Bank of America.

Tips From A Pro: How To Avoid Car Accidents

What does it take to avoid car accidents in Philadelphia?

You would think hat could be a good question for a PA personal injury attorney, but it turns out that Philadelphia delivery drivers have some excellent insight on the matter.  Bruce McAllister, a veteran UPS driver with an excellent safety record weighs in on what he thinks makes a good driver, according to The Philadelphia Inquirer.  

Of course, he also notes what he believes are the causes of many Philadelphia car accidents, citing distractions.  From his elevated seating in his UPS truck, he claims to have seen many drivers talking on cellular phones and some, even typing on laptops perched on their steering wheel. 

Wrongful Death Suit Continues Against Ramada

In the most recent update of a wrongful death lawsuit against a Ramada hotel, WTAE Pittsburgh reports that the fact that " will be included in the lawsuit.

In 2006, 17-year-old  Sean Nemcheck died after his truck drove through a fence and into a pond. He had been driving home from work at the Ramada of Historic Ligonier. His BAC level registered at 0.14%. For someone who is under the drinking age of 21, the legal BAC limit is 0.02%.

PA Personal Injury Attorney's Client Awarded $9.45 M

An Alabama woman was unit according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.

With the help of her , Esther Berezofsky, the victim received $3.25 million dollars in compensatory damages and an additional $6 million dollars in punitive damages. The lawsuit alleged that the Wyeth unit of Pfizer was responsible for the victim developing breast cancer.

The victim started taking a hormone drug called Prempro in 1997. It is a combination of the hormones progestin and estrogen that were found in the drugs Premarin and Provera. At the time, she had no signs of breast cancer. In 2002, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports that a study was released showing a connection between the two drugs and cancer.

Suit Filed Against Allen Iverson For Personal Injury

brought on by an alleged incident in Detroit, according to the Detroit Free Press.

Guy Walker claims that in mid-April of last year, Antwuan Clisey, one of Mr. Iverson's security detail, started an unprovoked fight that left Mr. Walker with a damaged eye. He claims that the fight was so rowdy that it caused the Beach Pizza Bar to be cleared out. In the eight-page complaint, the alleged victim also claims that Mr. Iverson did nothing to stop his body guard from assaulting him.

The victim is claiming that he "suffered severe pain, emotional distress and mental anguish," from the assault along with the physical pain of "an orbital blowout fracture of the eye."