$1,200,000 :: Payne v. USPCI

SETTLEMENT : 13-year-old died in rear-end accident and mother injured

Nina Payne was driving her Volvo when her vehicle was rear-ended by a truck operated by Marvin Sternberg. Ms. Payne’s 13-year-old son, who was riding in the right rear passenger seat, suffered major head trauma which led to his death two days later.

In addition to the severe emotional distress of losing her son, Nina Payne suffered serious back and other injuries. Tom Ostenson, the front seat passenger in the Volvo, suffered significant back and knee injuries which required extensive medical treatment and impacted his ability to work.

Payne and Ostenson hired attorneys Lawrence R. Booth of the Law Offices of Booth & Koskoff and Douglas Easton to represent them in a wrongful death lawsuit and automotive negligence lawsuit against the driver and his employer, USPCI, who he was driving for at the time of the accident. The attorneys also initially included Volvo in the claim because the front passenger seat collapsed on impact, a possible contribution to her son’s death. Volvo was later dismissed from the action.

Ultimately, the case settled before trial in favor of Payne and Ostenson. Booth and his team secured a total settlement amount of $1,200,000; of which $750,000 was awarded to the Payne family on behalf of the son’s wrongful death, $350,000 for Nina Payne’s injuries and $99,000 for Tom Ostenson’s injuries.

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