SETTLEMENT : Visitor to U.S. from Ireland drove on wrong side of road and collided with plaintiffs
On October 12, 1997, an Irish man, while under the employment of an American company, was driving a rental vehicle across California when he made a disastrous driving error. Momentarily forgetting the rules of the road when driving in the United States, the Irish driver made a left turn at a T-intersection and turned onto the wrong side of the road and into oncoming traffic. His vehicle collided head-on into another vehicle, causing serious injuries to a 42-year-old caregiver and a 52-year-old unemployed general contractor.
At the time of the accident, the 42-year-old caregiver was driving the vehicle and had been providing care to the 52-year-old’s quadriplegic son through an arrangement with the State of California. Before that, she had been trained and had worked as a computer programmer. The front passenger had taken time away from his career as a general contractor in order to also care for his son following his quadriplegic injuries. He was, however, at the time of the accident utilizing an unimproved property for farming.
As a result of the accident, the driver suffered multiple pelvic fractures, a tibia fracture in her right leg, multiple comminuted fibula fractures in both legs, and closed head trauma with a right blowout orbital fracture of the right eye. The extensive nature of these injuries forced her to be hospitalized for two and a half months where she underwent multiple surgeries although she was left with a permanent limp and deformed foot. The former general contractor and front seat passenger also suffered multiple pelvic fractures in addition to rib fractures and a large forehead laceration. His injuries also required extensive hospitalization and left him with permanent hip pain. The two retained the services of Lawrence R. Booth and Johanna J. Hansen of the Law Offices of Booth & Koskoff to represent them in a lawsuit against the at-fault driver and his American employer.
The Booth & Koskoff legal team argued both for medical costs and loss of earnings relative to both the driver’s and front passenger’s previous career incomes. They also cited the provisions of Proposition 213 for her medical expenses and loss of earnings.
The case ultimately settled out of court with the Law Offices of Booth & Koskoff securing a total sum of $1,000,000 on behalf of their clients; of which $400,000 went to the driver and $600,000 to the passenger.