New York Office Obtains Defense Verdict For Truck Driver and Driver’s Employer in Accident Case

New York, N.Y. (April 26, 2024) - New York Partners Jennifer Yuen and Darrell J. Whiteley, along with Partners Katherine Byrns and Associate Jasper Wong, recently secured a unanimous defense verdict for their clients in a motor vehicle accident case, following nearly three weeks of trial in Kings County Supreme Court. New York Associate Dean Pillarella also assisted the trial team on appellate issues during the course of the defense.

In this unique case, in which the plaintiff sought between $4 million and $6 million prior to trial, the Lewis Brisbois defense team asserted the sudden medical emergency doctrine as a complete defense to liability. They contended that the defendant commercial truck driver had suffered a sudden, unforeseen medical emergency that caused him to lose consciousness and control of his truck, resulting in the accident. The trial was bifurcated, with the liability phase proceeding first.

Unlike most typical MVA matters, the defense tackled complex factual, scientific and medical evidence in the liability trial, including issues related to accident reconstruction and biomedical engineering physics, as well as acute and chronic traumatic brain injury and neurological disorders.

The trial witnesses for the defense included eight nonparty witnesses, including NYPD and FDNY responders at the scene of the incident, immediate post-accident treating physicians (critical care medicine, neurology and internal medicine) and three experts in the areas of accident reconstruction, biomechanical engineering and neurology/neurocritical care medicine.

The Lewis Brisbois team ran aggressive and continuous witness investigation throughout the trial, teaming up with a private investigator to locate and secure the cooperation of multiple witnesses.

Ms. Yuen commented that the unanimous defense verdict was the result of “hard work and aggressive investigation and strategic planning.”

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