W&Z comes out ahead in Motor Vehicle Collision Case

Wesierski & Zurek LLP recently represented the Defendant school bus company and the driver in a motor vehicle to bicycle collision accident. The accident occurred on May 2, 2013, and resulted in the death of a 13 year old bicyclist.  The mother and father each filed separate lawsuits.  Plaintiffs argued that the defendant driver was impaired by prescription medication taken the evening before the accident, which was supported by the testimony of a Drug Recognition Expert with the Glendale Police Department.  Plaintiffs also argued that the driver failed to look left, right, left before proceeding through the intersection.  The defense team argued that the cyclist was riding against traffic on the wrong side of the road and that he never stopped before riding into the intersection and into the path of the bus.  W&Z defense team also contended that the driver was not impaired by medications taken the evening before the accident, and that the driver did look left, right, left and that she couldn’t have anticipated a cyclist coming from her right since that is not where the bicycle lane is located.  Trial was held in November and December of 2016.  On December 7, 2016, the jury returned a verdict in the liability phase in favor of the Plaintiffs, but found the decedent to be 80% at fault.  Pre-trial, the defense offered each parent $300,000.00, for a total of $600,000.00.  The plaintiff’s attorney demanded $10 million pre-trial and asked the jury to award $250 million.  On December 12, 2016, the jury returned a verdict in the damages phase for a total of $250,000, which, when reduced by the 80% comparative negligence of the decedent, came to a total of $50,000 to later be allocated between the two parents by the Court.  The Court then allocated $22,500 to the father and $27,500 to the mother.  After Motions to Tax costs and Motions for Attorney’s Fees are ruled on, the net recovery to the plaintiffs will be ZERO.