Top Cases by Schwebel, Goetz & Sieben
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Top Verdicts & Settlements

$ 15,868,960.00Jury Verdict

Product Liability

Brain Injuries

Description:
This case involved a 19-year-old young man who was working at a local gas station in rural Minnesota. The trial was one of the longest jury trials for a single injured plaintiff in Minnesota history. This major product liability case was appealed all the way to the United States Supreme Court, which ultimately upheld the verdict as reduced by the Minnesota Supreme Court. The result was not only a successful recovery for the plaintiff, but also established legal rights for protection of the public and those injured by defective products. The Minnesota Supreme Court reduced the original verdict to $8,200,000.00 as follows: $3,700,000.00 compensatory damages and $4,500,000.00 punitive damages.
$ 10,000,000.00Settlement

School Accident

Brain Injuries

Description:
A 16-year-old teenager suffered a traumatic brain injury during a private school physical education golf class when she was struck in the head by a golf ball hit by another student. The school asked the court to dismiss the case claiming that the girl had assumed the risk of injury. A federal court judge denied the school's request because the school had a duty to provide a safe class environment. In fact, questions existed about whether the school did so. The case later settled for $10 million.
$ 9,000,000.00Settlement

Grain elevator explosion

Traumatic Brain Injury

Description:
A young farmer suffered a severe brain injury in a grain elevator explosion, leaving him in a persistent vegetative state. This was the second time that the same elevator had blown up in three years. A settlement was negotiated with the elevator company without a lawsuit.
$ 6,000,000.00Settlement

Semi Tractor -Trailer Accident

Traumatic Brain Injury

Description:
A 35-year-old mother and wife suffered brain damage and the loss of one leg as a result of a collision with a semi tractor-trailer which pulled out onto a highway in a thick fog. The trucking company claimed that the fog was unexpected and made the collision unavoidable. However, pretrial investigation revealed that the truck driver had been warned shortly before the accident not to drive until the fog lifted. An out of court settlement was reached shortly before trial.
$ 5,000,000.00Settlement

Medical Malpractice

Brain Injuries

Description:
This case involved a recovery for a victim of medical malpractice. The plaintiff, an Army veteran, went to a hospital in Southern Minnesota reporting that he had blacked-out while driving his car. Investigation revealed a large aneurysm (a weakening in the wall of the blood vessel) in his brain. Because he had no health insurance, the plaintiff went to the Veteran's Hospital in Minneapolis. There, investigation confirmed the presence of the aneurysm. The decision was made to undergo surgery. Surgery was scheduled for a Monday morning, but when the plaintiff arrived at the hospital on Sunday afternoon, he was told that no one knew anything about the scheduling of the surgery; despite the fact the nurse's notes specifically reflected that the Plaintiff was to return that day for preparation for surgery. The plaintiff was sent home with instructions to return the next morning to meet with the surgeon. The Plaintiff and his family arrived at 10:00 a.m., and were not seen by the surgeon until 5:00 p.m. At that time, the Neurosurgical resident informed him that she had no idea why he was there, that surgery had not been scheduled, and he should go home and wait to hear from them. Five days later the aneurysm ruptured, and the plaintiff was profoundly brain damaged.