Meyers & Flowers Partner Jonathan Mincieli recently finalized a Cook County personal injury settlement for a plumber who was seriously injured when he was crushed against a wall by a forklift.
In July of 2017, 39-year-old James* was directed to stay beyond regular working hours to help move a gang box during a project at a local college. Another employee – with no proper training – who was operating a forklift to move the gang box lost control of the machine, pushing the gang box into James, and pinning him against the wall of the building.
As a result of the crash, James suffered a fractured pelvis and thus had to undergo intensive physical therapy and work conditioning to regain his mobility. After more than two years of experiencing lower body pain, it was determined he also sustained a labral tear during the incident, which required surgery to repair. Since the incident, James has incurred hundreds of thousands in medical expenses for treatment related to his injuries and has been unable to return to work due to his physical condition.
Led by Jonathan Mincieli, the Meyers & Flowers team filed suit against James’ employer claiming the construction company failed to exercise care in its management, inspection, supervision, and exercise of direction over the work such as to avoid injury to individuals on the site.
“There is no question the Defendant failed to provide a safe workplace for workers like James. Between the supervisor’s failures in oversight and the Defendant’s failures in training and implementation, James was left susceptible to injury,” said Mr. Mincieli.
Mr. Mincieli’s claims were met with opposition as the construction company’s insurance initially refused coverage for the labral tear, asserting that the injury was unrelated to the case because it was found two years after the incident. Furthermore, several doctors retained by the Defendant opined that James could return to work as a plumber, despite his own treating physician stating he was unfit to return to work.
Through his efforts, Mr. Mincieli negotiated a $575,000 settlement for James. “We are pleased that our client secured the means necessary to pay the medical bills he incurred from this incident and to continue to seek treatment to regain his quality of life.
*Our client’s name has been changed to protect his privacy.