Laddey, Clark & Ryan is proud to announce The New Jersey Law Journal has recognized the firm’s verdict of $4.1M as one of the top 20 personal injury verdicts of 2017.
In the August 28, 2017 edition of the American Lawyer Media’s New Jersey Law Journal, Laddey, Clark & Ryan’s verdict of $4.1M for Sae Rheen Kim of Bergen County was ranked as the 15th largest for the year. The special section ranks the dollar amounts of New Jersey’s top 20 personal injury recoveries between August 20, 2016 and August 21, 2017.
Andrew Fraser, Esq. and Meghan Steingall, Esq., both of Laddey, Clark & Ryan, LLP in Sparta, NJ, tried the case. The case, Kim v. Kim involved a fourteen year old girl, Sae Rheen Kim, who suffered permanent spinal injuries in a Feb. 23, 2013 crash. Kim suffered two herniated discs in her neck and one in her back, and experiences constant pain. She has undergone physical therapy, acupuncture and injections to relieve the pain, but nothing has helped. Sae Rheen’s doctors expect she will need to undergo spinal surgery at a later date.
Sae Rheen was an accomplished viola player and had planned on attending the Julliard School in New York and become a professional musician. In fact, at trial, one of Sae Rheen’s music teachers, who has seen many of her students go onto Julliard, said that before the crash Sae Rheen had the ability and drive to get into Julliard. However, because her injuries hampered her ability to perform complex routines, Sae Rheen had to give up her pursuit of that dream.
Prior to trial, the defendant’s insurance company, Allstate, offered $15,000 to settle the case, claiming Sae Rheen’s spine injuries were the result of old age and not the crash. The case proceeded to a one-week trial before Superior Court Judge Charles Powers. The six person jury was asked to assess the damage done to Sae Rheen’s life and body as a result of the crash and assessed the value of those damages to be $4,100,000.
The defendant’s Allstate policy covered him for $250,000 and he had an excess policy with Chubb Insurance for an additional $5,000,000. The Defendant filed a Motion for a New Trial, which was denied. The case settled shortly afterwards.