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Success Stories

D'Amico · Burchfield Wins $2.8 million Award for Man Injured in Horrific Car Accident - One of the Largest Personal Injury Awards in RI History

A Providence County Superior Court jury has returned a verdict of $2.1 million in a personal injury trial. The case involved a man who was severely injured in a car accident in September of 2003. The man was a passenger in a vehicle that hit two telephone poles on Warwick Avenue in Cranston. The accident crushed his right leg and foot. The jaws of life were used to extricate him from the vehicle. Only through extraordinary efforts including 8 surgeries were doctors able to save the man’s leg. The injury left him with multiple metal rods and pins in his leg, a permanent limp, limited mobility in his ankle, and a 22% full body impairment. The $2.1 million jury award followed an intense five day trial and is believed to be one of the largest in a personal injury case in many years. With interest, the verdict totaled almost $3 million. D’Amico • Burchfield utilized state of the art technology for visual presentation and introduced extensive medical testimony from orthopedic and plastic surgeons to allow the jury to clearly visualize the magnitude of the injury.

Utility Settles Residents’ Suit Over Mercury Spill

The gas company Southern Union will pay an undisclosed amount of money to 90 Pawtucket residents in a confidential settlement of a federal lawsuit stemming from a 2004 mercury spill, the residents’ lawyer said
Friday.

Residents sued in U.S. District Court, Providence, after some local youths in 2004 broke into a building at 91 Tidewater St. that was owned by Southern Union, the Texas-based utility. The youths found liquid mercury being
illegally stored in a locked cabinet in a vacant building; they smashed jars of the substance and dumped a container of it at the nearby Lawn Terrace Apartments. The ensuing cleanup cost the company $6.6 million.

Clean Harbor Environmental Services, an environmental firm hired by Southern Union to clean up the mercury spill, is also contributing to the settlement.

In October 2008, Southern Union was convicted by a federal jury on one count of illegally storing liquid mercury without a permit but was found not guilty on two other counts. Prosecutors had accused the company of failing to
report the mercury release on its property.

Mercury is a toxic substance that can affect the central nervous system.

According to court records, sentencing, which was slated for earlier this year, has not happened. Southern Union this year filed a motion seeking a new trial. U.S. District Judge William E. Smith ruled July 9 that the maximum
fine that can be imposed in the criminal case is $38.1 million (at the maximum rate of $50,000 a day).


Southern Union sold its Rhode Island holdings — New England Gas Company — to National Grid in 2006. National Grid is not a defendant.

D'Amico • Burchfield, LLP wins a $340,000 jury verdict for Burrillville woman injured in a motor vehicle accident.

A Providence County jury awarded a Burrillville woman, who was permanently injured in an automobile accident, over $340,000.00. The motor vehicle accident happened on June 23, 2004 at the intersection of Routes 7 and 102 in Burrillville, RI. The client had been extremely active before this accident and her injuries changed all aspects of her life. On behalf of the defendant, Allstate Insurance Company admitted that it’s insured driver was at fault for the accident but maintained that our client suffered only a minor neck injury and had no injury to her shoulder. The jury verdict came after a 5 day trial and 1 hour of deliberations. The verdict was for $200,000; with interest totaled $340,515.00.  Allstate Insurance Company offered only $50,000 to settle the case prior to trial.

D'Amico • Burchfield, LLP wins $60,000 jury verdict for school bus driver injured as a result of faulty road repairs.

A Providence Superior Court jury awarded $60,000 to an East Providence school bus driver who was injured when the school bus she was operating fell into a sink hole.  The evidence presented at trial established that the trench was not properly compacted before it was paved over. The trench and asphalt patch failed after a heavy rain storm.  The incident happened on April 5, 2006 in the City of Providence and the defendant never made an offer to settle the case.  At first the client was not aware of her injuries because of her immediate concern for the safety of the children on the bus, but 2  The following day she was diagnosed with post concussive syndrome. The jury verdict came after a 5 day trial and  3 hours of  deliberation. The verdict was for $60,000. There was no offer before trial.

Slip & Fall - Worker's Compensation Claim Settles for $65,000

On a mid-December day, a 61 year-old man, during the course of his employment, was injured when he slipped and fell in the parking lot of a building he was required to visit for work. It had snowed the day before and the parking lot was not plowed or treated at the time he fell. As a result of the fall, he suffered a left shoulder rotator cuff tear. After a course of physical therapy proved unsuccessful, the gentleman underwent surgical repair.

D'Amico Burchfield successfully handled the man's workers compensation claim. However, the insurance company for the property owner attempted to transfer responsibility indicating the man was not paying attention; it also attempted to minimize his injury. With the threat of litigation, D'Amico Burchfield successfully settled the man's claim for $65,000.

Freedom of Speech

Last month, D'Amico · Burchfield, LLP  was successful in securing the outright dismissal of criminal "cyber stalking" charges that police filed against a Narragansett resident for posting various comments on Craigslist criticizing a retired police officer running for a local political office.

“By charging our client with a criminal offense for his critical postings on Craigslist runs roughshot over the basic principal of freedom of speech” states William Devine, Esq who handled this matter to its satisfactory conclusion. "We are pleased the Town of Narragansett dismissed the charges after hearing our position on this issue"

D'Amico • Burchfield Secures $250,000 settlement for young boy injured in auto accident.

An 11 year-old boy suffered a broken leg and a forehead laceration with scarring as a result of a single-car accident in which he was a passenger. After obtaining the liability policy limits of $25,000.00, the minor Plaintiff pursued a claim against the underinsured motorist coverage of his family's household auto insurance policy. The case was submitted to arbitration heard by a panel of three arbitrators. Prior to the announcement of the arbitration award, the insurance company offered $200,000.00 to settle the young boy's claim. D'Amico · Burchfield arranged for the funds to be put into an annuity for the young boy and, as a result, he will recover more than $250,000.00 in cash, with no tax consequences, by the time he is 27 years old.

D'Amico · Burchfield obtains a $240,000 settlement for a young man injured in a one car accident.

A 19 year old young man suffered a serious leg injury when the driver of the vehicle he was a passenger in lost control and collided with a tree. Two other passengers in the vehicle also suffered serious injuries. D'Amico · Burchfield aggressively investigated the claim and was able to discover additional insurance coverage for the responsible driver and during the course of litigation was able to settle the claim for $240,000.

D'Amico · Burchfield Secures $210,000 settlement for the wrongful death of a nursing home resident.

An elderly, wheelchair-bound nursing home resident died from multiple traumatic injuries when her wheelchair fell down a set of unguarded steps in her residential living facility.  D'Amico · Burchfield worked closely with the Providence law firm of Mandell, Schwartz & Boisclair and were successful securing a $210,000 settlement for the decedent's Estate based on the argument that the nursing home failed to provide adequate safety measures to protect against the decedent's fall.

D’Amico · Burchfield Secures $200,000 settlement for woman injured in an out of state accident.

A Rhode Island woman was seriously injured in a rear end collision on Rte. 95 in the state of North Carolina. The woman suffered scarring, physical and emotional injuries as a result of this accident. The insurance company for the responsible party attempted to minimize the physical and emotional injuries. With the threat of litigation, D’Amico · Burchfield successfully settled the claim for $200,000.