Quantcast
Home / Legal News / 2009 Largest Settlements

2009 Largest Settlements

What follows is a summary of the largest settlement listings which ran in Wisconsin Law Journal’s Verdict & Settlement Reporter in 2009.

The largest settlement of the year was reported by attorneys Daniel Rottier and James Fergal, Habush Habush & Rottier. The remainder are reprinted below and edited for space. They are listed in order of the size of the settlement.

MOTOR VEHICLES

Semi collision kills two, injures one

Court: Dane County

Judge: C. William Foust

Verdict or settlement/amount: Settlement, $6.9 million

Date of incident: Aug. 17, 2004

Disposition date: July 23, 2009

Plaintiff’s attorneys: David E. Rapoport, Paul D. Richter, Rapoport Law Offices, Chicago; Keith R. Clifford, Terrence M. Polich, Clifford & Raihala SC, Madison; Robert F. Foss, Baum, Hedlund Law Firm, Los Angeles

Defense attorney: Jay R. Starrett, Whyte Hirschboeck Dudek SC, Milwaukee

Plaintiff’s experts: Robert Huntington MD; Gerald Lang MD; Frank Ochberg MD

Plaintiff counsel’s fact summary: A semi-tractor-trailer rear-ended plaintiffs’ car while it was stopped in traffic, killing two occupants and seriously injuring a third. Plaintiffs were a couple in their fifties and their four-year-old granddaughter. The grandfather, who survived, suffered a fractured left tibia and fibula repaired with intramedullary nailing and post-traumatic stress disorder. His wife died instantly. Their granddaughter died from traumatic asphyxiation as the car was crushed.

Impact with semi sends jeep airborne

Injuries: Right ankle fracture; herniation of the stomach and colon lodged into the abdomen; bilateral collapsed lungs; brain hemorrhage; cervical spine dislocation with bleeding into the cervical spinal cord; ligament disruption; nerve root injury at cervical and thoracic levels

Case: Miller v. Buchanan and Struck & Irwin Paving

Court: Washington County

Verdict or settlement/amount: Pre-suit settlement, $6 million

Original amount sought: $12 million

Special damages: Past medical expenses: $979,469; past wage loss: $75,000

Date of incident: May 23, 2007

Plaintiff’s attorney: Timothy S. Trecek, Habush Habush & Rottier SC, Milwaukee

Defense attorney: Gerald G. Schmidt, Schmidt, Darling & Erwin, Milwaukee

Insurance carrier: West Bend Mutual Insurance

Plaintiff’s experts: Dennis Skogen, reconstruction; Carl Rieken, trucking; Helen Woodard, life care planner; David Stopper, trucking

Plaintiff counsel’s fact summary: Plaintiff Miller was driving her Jeep Grand Cherokee eastbound on STH 33 near Addison, Wis. Defendant Buchanan was operating his semi-tractor trailer westbound on STH 33 at the same time. The collision occurred when Buchanan lost control of his truck and crossed the centerline into the path of Miller’s Jeep. According to witnesses, the impact of the Jeep striking the truck was so sudden and severe that it caused the rear of the Jeep to become airborne. Plaintiff’s theory was negligent management and control.

PRODUCT LIABILITY

Jet Ski explosion causes severe injuries

Injuries: Fracture dislocation of spinal cord at T12-L1 and other spinal cord injuries causing paraplegia; other personal injuries

Case: Hart, et al. v. Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd., et al.

Court: Racine County, 07CV1548

Judge: Joseph McDevitt, mediator

Verdict or settlement/amount: Settlement, $5.5 million

Date of incident: July 15, 2005

Disposition date: July 13, 2009

Plaintiff’s attorneys: Patrick O. Dunphy, Sarah F. Kaas, Cannon & Dunphy SC, Brookfield; James A. Pitts, Schoone, Leuck, Kelley, Pitts & Knurr SC, Racine

Defense attorneys: For the Kawasaki defendants: Daniel J. LaFave, Christopher Meadows, Quarles & Brady LLP, Milwaukee; for Main, Marine & Ski and Sentry Insurance: Kevin A. Christensen, Leib & Katt SC, Milwaukee; for plaintiff Robert Jacobsen: Thomas M. Devine, Hostak Henzl & Bichler SC, Racine, and Chubb insurance; for Progressive Northern Insurance Co.: Frederick J. Strampe, Borgelt, Powell, Peterson & Frauen, Milwaukee

Plaintiff’s experts: Gregory Davis, marine engineer; Greg Binversie, Phillip Dindinger, Michael Burleson, engineering; Anand R. Shah, materials engineer

Defense experts: J. Paul Frantz, Kevin C. Breen, Robert K. Taylor, Donald E. Duvall, engineering

Plaintiff counsel’s fact summary: Plaintiff Hart was seated on plaintiff Jacobsen’s 1998 Kawasaki Sport Tourer Jet Ski. Jacobsen pressed the start button and it exploded. Hart was propelled into the air and landed on a nearby pier.

Plaintiffs’ theory was that an earlier Kawasaki recall and subsequent repair performed on the fuel system of the Jet Ski caused the primary fuel pump diaphragm to contact the aluminum cover plate of the fuel pump, causing a fatigue failure in the diaphragm, and causing gasoline to leak into the hull of the Jet Ski while it sat on a lift for several weeks. As a result of a loose battery cable, when the Jet Ski was started a spark from the battery that was located in the engine compartment ignited accumulated flammable vapors inside the Jet Ski hull.

MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE

Caregivers missed obvious signs of stroke

Injuries: Total, permanent disability

Case: Patton v. Brilla, et al.

Court/case no.: Sheboygan County, 07-CV-376

Judge: James Bolgert; mediator: Charles Stierman

Verdict or settlement/amount: Setttlement, $4.5 million

Date of incident: May 20, 2004

Disposition date: April 23, 2009

Plaintiff’s attorney: Lynn R. Laufenberg, Laufenberg Law Group SC, Milwaukee

Defense attorneys: For Dr. Brilla: Mark Larson, Gutglass, Erickson & Bonnville SC, Milwaukee; for Dr. Siddique: Michael P. Malone, Hinshaw & Culbertson, Milwaukee; for the Wisconsin Injured Patients and Families Compensation Fund: Jeremy Gill, Nash, Spindler, Grimstad & McCracken LLC, Manitowoc

Plaintiff’s experts: Candice Perkins MD, Axel Rosengart MD, stroke neurology; Robert Peyster MD, neuroradiology; Gaston da Costa MD, general neurology; Henry Alba MD, physical medicine and rehabilitation; Rick Ruvin, home modifications; Ross K. Lynch PhD, vocational rehabilitation; David Ward PhD, economist

Defense experts: Daniel Labovitz MD, stroke neurologist; Stephen Futterer MD, Victor Haughton MD, neuroradiology; Leonard Berlin MD, radiology; Lawrence Dineen, life care planning and vocational rehabilitation; Jubin Merati PhD, economist

Plaintiff counsel’s fact summary: Patton is totally disabled by the effects of a stroke not timely diagnosed or treated.

Dr. Brilla, a neurologist, was negligent in failing to recognize the symptoms were evidence of brain stem transient ischemic attacks due to posterior circulation insufficiency. Dr. Siddique, a radiologist who read his MRI results, was negligent in failing to confirm that his claimed “stat report” of MRI findings was received and acted upon.

Plaintiffs’ experts testified that another MRI or other study of the vessels of the brain should have been done earlier and would’ve shown significant narrowing of the basilar artery. They believe the brain stem stroke could probably have been prevented with the use of anti-coagulants, close monitoring and, if necessary, stenting of the artery.

Rank Case/Court Type Amount Attorney(s)
1 Bomkamp v. Go, et al Medical negligence $17.3 million Daniel A. Rottier, James M. Fergal, Habush Habush & Rottier SC, Madison
2 Confidential Personal injury $6.9 million David E. Rapoport, Paul D. Richter, Rapoport Law Offices, Chicago; Keith R. Clifford, Terrence M. Polich, Clifford & Raihala SC, Madison; Robert F. Foss, Baum, Hedlund Law Firm, Los Angeles
3 Miller v. Buchanan and Struck & Irwin Paving Auto accident $6 million Timothy S. Trecek, Habush Habush & Rottier SC, Milwaukee
4 Hart, et al. v. Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd., et al. Personal injury/product liability $5.5 million Patrick O. Dunphy, Sarah F. Kaas, Cannon & Dunphy SC, Brookfield
5 Patton v. Brilla, et al. Medical negligence $4.5 million Lynn R. Laufenberg, Laufenberg Law Group SC, Milwaukee

11 comments

  1. legal-medical-insurancefraud mafia

  2. It would be interesting to know how much money was put into these cases by the plaintiffs and how much was spent to defend them. Too many people seem to think plaintiffs’ cases are “free” money. They never consider the significant cost of experts and lawyers’ time preparing these cases. As these cases were all settlements; there is no mafia. What is not listed are all the cases that did not settle.

    In the end, plaintiff’s’ lawyers are defense lawyers best friends. Without them, they would have no work to do. Given that plaintiffs’ lawyers typically take these cases on a contingent fee while defense counsel work by the hour, defense counsel rides the gravy train while plaintiffs’ lawyers are branded with epithets such as the ubiquitous term “(evil) trial lawyer.”

  3. after living ot of country for 22 years, mostly, where the countries had no-fault insurance, and universal health, last but most significant, they had 25 % of lawyers and doctors per capita.

    The yellow pages were thin, compared to ours filled with accident lawyers and their legal co-harts.

    When people have accidents, they are taken care of, the vehcles replaced, lost wages are accounted for, along with disabilities.

    The only missing factor are the lawyers and creative medicine, done to inflate the medical fees so the formula-1/3rd medical, 1/3rd legal, and 1/3rd actual victim.

    Legal-medical-insurancefruad mafia

  4. The cases not settled, whereby the insurance company, payoff the lawyers, and the normally poor, low class victim suffers a disabled life

  5. bolgert finds me guilty in absentia for abandoning carol seigal, claiming to be carol cox while pregnant with child,1974, 1977 extorts me for 10 thou, then when paid of shuts the case, then reopens it, colluding with quebec a foreign power ( treason) destroys my business, family, then has me deported to sheboygan, where i sit for 6 months in jail compiling real factual evidence of my innocence like marriage certificate, of real spouse, birth certificate of my daughter, etc, which bolgert suppresses the day before his kangeroo court, colluding with by brother james cox who defrauds 90,000 from my canadian spouse then promises to pay but never does, always promising, always using others like bolgy to do his dirty work, destroying an honorable man, company, family, then bolgy orders me out of sheboygan and to never have contact with him or the public pretender larry walsh,bolgy a man like his father before him runs unopposed making a mockery of the law. making decisions with access to the facts. I wonder how many innocent men he has criminalized for life ?

  6. when real justice be served on bolgert, james ry cox, and carol vogt-benedum-mayer-cox-seigal, a paternity fraud artist, using bolgert to get 120 dollars a month from my social security even her false claims of marriage do not cover the 10 year period social security requires for a woman to take a mans social security, yet still the criminality of judge james bolgert continues on, who assigns social security an order to take 12o dollars a month from my tiny social security, because quebec, the foreign power he colluded with getting me deported (a crime of Treason) do not share the income records with the USA as required by law, reciprocality, all ignored by a man unfit to judge using false information t prosecute me, yet refuses to address it—when will americ finally embrace information technology and put an end to the predatroy several hundred thousand judiacial districts in our country treating normal people like cattle building their budgets based on case loads, up to a third absolutely innocent, as americas youth began to embrace anarchy, an ultimate end to the concealed monarchy, hiding behind predatory laws in a nation no longer independent, because lawyers, judges, politicians, lobbies and clients installed free trade SLAVERY exporting our jobs ending americas independence, for lobbie case in the pocket—the legal realm like the political arena and nobility health care no longer serve america—the youth of our nation will soon end it, as it prevents them from arising each day in an effort to do the right things, instead jerked around by laws that stifle freedom, and bilk cash from common people the herd—I hope to see the day when real justice is served but am happy to see its end beginning.

  7. pardon the poor grammar but my glasses were broken, I am sad to see such a miscarriage of justice to a small family whose’s successful business and lives were destroyed at the will of a dishonorable judge making decisions without allowing the facts to be presented to the court.

  8. Now that bolgert is resigning I shall seek to have my passport restriction implemented by james bolgert lifted, so I can return to Montreal and visit those still alive who were/are my friends of 22 years. I have waited for 22 years because of bolgerts judicial ability to incarcerate anyone he wants knowing it takes substancial time for appeals to be heard. He did this to me Twice, which I waited for the appeal to be heard. Destroying my family, my business 22 years in developing worth a lot of money. Uncaring, unknowing the people he acted for against me covering a period of more than 30 years. The case of Jales Bolgert-Sheboygan -vs- Jackie Cox is a bizarre act of wrongful Justice. What can I do to end this reign of terror started by a paternity fraud-retail theft-professional phony check ARTIST honored by james j bolgert who does anything he wants in HIS court of lAw

  9. After Bolgert left office as judge I went to Sheboygan Wi. In an effort to end this paternity fraud, bigamy, case. I met with the only Sheboygan lawyer willing to represent me. We examined court records for history of Carol Vogt-Benedum-seigl-etc. There were no records before 1982 in spite of a settlement-extortion whereby cox paid off a $10,000 in 1977-79 to close tha case “CASE CLOSED” court records destroyed. My attorney Fred Fick a Texas attorney who handled the extortion is dead.

    The case supposedly reopened in 1982 Unknown to me states I was served with the action. I lived out of country and am totally unaware of any proceeding and suspect legal fraud in sheboygans Court files.

    There is no history on file about another Texas Attorney who contacted Sheboygan requesting the court files in an effort to get me passport back so I could resume my business 22 years in developing ASSETS are LOCATED in a COUNTRY I cannot go into without a passport. After a year of waiting on Sheboygan to provide records of court proceeding he/we waited more than a year for Sheboygan to provide some court records which appeared to be tampered with.

    The attorney said he required $5,000 to start the case, suggesting I acquire a sample of one of Carol seigls’ children DNA test and IF IT PROVES I AM NOT THE DAD, after which he would (try) to get a court order to DNA test her other children now 50 years old or older. He stated even if We got DNA that proves I am NOT the father, it’s questionable if a trial would be scheduled by SHABOYGAN judicial authority. Further If a trial were settled and we won it would likely be appealed again, then if won, again etc into my next lifetime. I am 73+ years old.

    I questioned about getting my passport back like the court agreed with another Milwaukee attorney who made an agreement with judge bolgert that I pay 25% of my social security in return for restoration of my PASSPORT privilidges. They now take 25% of my social security until the couple hundred thousand Dollars are paid back. Assuming I live for another Hundred + years. This was a new issue since Sheboygan court files regarding the case no longer exist.

    Considering legal costs and near endless times Sheboygan justice can appeal-reappeal-ETC ETC since I am just a COMMON MAN I have concluded Sheboygan DOJ are too powerful to fight and I should resign myself to NEVER getting a passport and NEVER consider doing anything whatsoever but DIE.

    I counted the life years Sheboygen could claim I did not support carols children. It came to 37 years if 18 is the maximum time child support can be claimed. Considering it dates back to 1971 and continues for 14 years, counting (likely support payment to Vogt-Benedum-other sailors-seigl-etc. the reason Cox is not listed as one of her spouses is there could be NO PROOF OF ACTUAL MARRIAGE even though a marriage liscense was acquired in order for her to take 50% of my Naval income in 1963 which was less than $200 a month $50.00 a month per child or $600.00 a year times 37 equals $22,200.00. I have already paid several times that amount UNcounted my lost family, my engineering design, manufacturing business 22 years developing, my lifetime of science projects across our infrastructure that would take a book to illustrate

    It’s interesting to note the latest Sheboygan lawyer said the court states they are not required to keep original court documents beyond 5 years. Yet in reviewing the case file against me is a document NOT provided until now.

    The document dates back to 1969 several months after carol moved in with some guy named Glen from 3 rivers Wi. The court declared I was to pay $50.00 a week for 3 child support and $1.00 a year alimony, more than $1,500 less than Wisconsin courts awarded Carol Vogt-Benedum in one of her paternity fraud cases when she was married to Michael Benedum another sailor another SHOTGUN WEDDING while attending Great Lakes Naval Training Center before the Information Age when all her paternity fraud cases would be exposed and likely NO SHOTGUN WEDDINGS would have happened.

    Michael Benedum one of her GREAT LAKES NAVAL TRAINING PATERNITY FRAUD VICTIMS simply shipped out after the gestation expired without an offling. In his absence the courts gave Carol whoever near $1600 a year alimony or 50% of his naval pay way Back then. SHE AND HER FAMILY DVELOPED A NEW TRICK TO AVOID shipping out without paying. After buying a marriage license which my mom approved ( believing her phony paternity claim ) and I signed although no wedding happened. When I got weekend leave and popped in for a visit unannounced her mom and were at PARTY when they opended to door no saw me, they shut it stating I needed to make an appointment, when I did not disappear fast enough the police showed up and attested me based on Carol whoever and her mom statements that I threatened them and myself. The police turned me over to the shore patrol who put me in a mental ward causing me to miss graduating of optical Instrumentman school

    Just how much cash CAROL WHOEVER etc et etc is still getting in child support-alimony from whoever-wherever is anybody’s guess. BUT one thing is certain, the court record of 1969 has A NEW AMOUNT TO BE PAID instead of $50 it’s now $70, the 1969 date crossed out and 1973 is handwritten in in an effort to hide the fact she waited until 1974 to file another paternity fraud case after being encouraged to do so by a texas BANKSTER who bolgert also colluded with when he arranged my Deportation by contacting a foreign power. A federal crime of Treason. BUTT the all powerful bolgert dynasty of JUDGES have prividges above the laws

    (1974) Carol whoever stated the child she had in her belly was the child of Mine, which was born in 1974/5 and carried my name to support her paternity fraud of 1974, years after I had left the country to get away from carols family business PROFESSIONAL RETAIL THEFT GANG, Out of Wisconsin CHECK CASHING SCAM and any crime that gets her cash which served her and her family well until data science ended her check cashing-buy one steal one return two scams, putting her oldest daughter behind bars and giving Carol,whoever possession of her daughters children. After which she wrote Sheboygan DOJ stating her responsibility to raise Her eldest daughters children was/is somehow related to one of her paternity frauds whereby SHE is still getting $130.00 a month from my social security as I am nearing 74 years old and have a.ready paid the courts double what I should owe considering HER brood are 50 years old.

    I offered her children good money if they would do a DNA, all declined. Her youngest child seemed different, she was in the process of moving away to ENGLAND she said to escape her family, but declined DNA. It’s because her NEVER WORKED A DAY IN HER LIFE now age 76 has real estate holding and her children fear loss of inheritance if the submitt DNA.

    Child support laws that FELONIZE near 5,000,000 men at any one point in time refuses to acknowledge SCIENCE that clearly illustrates 1,600,000 of those men who are victims of adultry, but have been found guilty and classed as DEADBEAT DADS forcing many into a life of crime, or at least found guilty of such crimes by a truely CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM

    The couple hundred thousand I suddenly owe to Sheboygan Wisconsin and their related federal money is a two eared devil to millions of innocent people who are guilty of being common people, subjected to Common CASE LAW that allow lawyers-judges to live lives as virtual NOBILITY UNprosecutible for the crimes they use to develop budgets and Keep Low Class people OUT OF BUSINESS and revenue by destroying their incomes then demanding cash they no longer have access to then declaring them felons for life while periodically arresting incarcerating them-US in a nation where significant city, state, federal, DOJ’s and lawmakers MOSTLY NO LONGER serve our nation’s COMMON PEOPLE as they gang up together destroying our jobs, denying us access to business MOSTLY in a sad sad world where no one is the same and no two situations are the same HOWEVER are placed together in CASE LAW THEORY that survives by refusing to allow data science to eliminate; wrongful prosecution, malpractice, the ONE WORLD POWER BANKSTERS LAWYERS JUDGES DOCTURDS use to feed on common people

  10. I spent a couple hours updating my efforts to end my passport denial and taking social security payments for children now in their 50’s still refusing DNA testing, and I, 74. The comment disappeared so I Guess someone monitors and censors this site.

    Sheboygan DOJ is beyond reason, without ethics, morality, logic or care for ongoing child abuse the courts CHILD PROTCTIVE SERVICES simply no longe serve any real purpose outside budgetary creation for their minions on the backs of their victims.

    It appears my comments are disabled from appearing on the Internet bu someone views and monitors

  11. Its a very sad little world, where America, citizens are NOW suddenly the new Low Caste, unable to find jobs at our missing 72,000 engineering design manufacturing companies exported by our pseudo elected gang of Lawyers, Judges, Banksters, Mobsters, who make up our new laws LOBBIE WRITTEN STATUTES BRIBED INTO ENACTMENTS are the same shadow of; city, county, state, federal, patent, Tribunal courtrooms of clout where little people are found guilty as charged, otherwise why would they have been charged.

    Being the subject of paternity fraud, and TREASON, involving a state judge who contacted a foreign power colluding with them to have me deported from a country where I spent 22 years setting up a series of manufacturing companies and had a family, a future in the world.

    All terminated by Sheboygan Wisconsin without even trying to extort me, as opposed to destroying my life.

    THIS HAS GONE ON FOR SO LONG it’s bizarre! I OFTEN WONDER HOW MANY OTHER VICTIMS OF WRONGFUL PROSECUTION, WRONGFUL INCARCERATION, THERE IS IN THE United States of America?

    Born in 1944 and still living I figure every day is a blessing,

Leave a Comment