$1,450,000 Settlement for a Brooklyn Resident Struck by a Collapsed Ceiling in Her Apartment Causing Neck Injuries

A 25-year-old apartment tenant was showering when a portion of the bathroom ceiling collapsed and struck her. As a result of the incident, she suffered serious injuries and eventually required spinal fusion surgery. Represented by Block O'Toole & Murphy, she was able to recover a $1.45 million settlement for claims of future medical expenses, pain and suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life.

Date of Settlement

March 1, 2017

Court and County

Supreme Kings

Age and Occupation of Plaintiff

Plaintiff was 25 years old on the date of the accident. Plaintiff was not employed when the accident occurred but subsequently became employed delivering medical equipment to patients.

Facts and Allegations

Plaintiff, a tenant in defendant's residential apartment building, was caused to be injured when a portion of the ceiling in her bathroom collapsed on her while she was showering. The falling debris caused her to fall backwards and strike the back of her head on the edge of the bathtub. The plaintiff's rental building was owned by defendant Ocean Realty Holdings, LLC and managed by defendant Wavecrest Management Team LTD. Plaintiff alleged there was a longstanding water leak from the apartments above that Defendants were aware of, but failed to repair despite continued complaints. Defendants alleged they never received notice of any water leak conditions in Plaintiff's apartment prior to the accident.

Injuries and Damages

As a result of the ceiling collapse striking Plaintiff and knocking her down, EMS arrived at the scene and transported her to a local emergency room where initially she made complaints of pain to her right shoulder and lower back. A couple of weeks after discharge from the hospital Plaintiff began treatment from various physicians for complaints of head and neck pain and started a course of physical therapy. When her neck symptoms did not improve she was referred for diagnostic testing. Plaintiff alleged to have sustained cervical herniations at the C5-C6 and C6-C7 segments with associated radiculopathy, eventually requiring a cervical fusion surgery at the C5-C6 level.

As a result of these significant injuries Plaintiff has been unable to engage in her activities of daily living including taking care of her children, upkeep of her home, and participating in social and recreational activities. The Plaintiff made a claim for future medical expenses.

The Defense and their physicians argued that Plaintiff's injuries were not caused by the subject accident evidenced by the fact that her first complaints regarding her cervical spine were not made until 18 days post-accident. Defendants also argued that the alleged injuries were degenerative in nature and not causally related to the subject accident and that all diagnostic studies obtained failed to illustrate any traumatically induced injury. Further, Defendants argued that no further treatment is necessary at this juncture and Plaintiff can engage in all activities of daily living without any restrictions.

Plaintiff did not make a claim for loss of earnings, but made claims for past and future medical expenses, as well as pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life.

Result

The parties negotiated a $1,450,000 pretrial settlement.

Attorneys

This matter was handled by Stephen J. Murphy and Michael Hurwitz.

Injured as the result of a ceiling collapse? Call us at 212-736-5300 or contact us online to receive a free legal consultation and discuss your case with an experienced personal injury attorney.