$10 Million Settlement Obtained for Woman’s Death in Collision With Tractor Trailer

The Estate of Jane Doe V. Trucking Company, Et. Al.

In 2016, Cunningham Bounds recovered $10 million for the family of an Alabama woman who died after being hit by a big rig tractor trailer on Interstate 65. At the scene, good Samaritans tried to rescue our client, but she succumbed to her injuries and passed away. The case name and the parties must be kept confidential pursuant to the settlement agreement.

Cunningham Bounds utilized two of its most seasoned investigators to conduct a full scale investigation immediately following the crash, which included interviewing all witnesses, taking aerial photographs of the scene, and working closely with the traffic homicide investigators. Experts from around the country were brought in by Cunningham Bounds to inspect all of the vehicles, obtain dash-cam videos, download the “black box” on vehicles involved in the crash, and conduct a comprehensive forensic examination of all of the available evidence. After determining the cause of the crash, Cunningham Bounds had to decide where to file suit.

Depending on a variety of factors including the residency of the parties and where the injury occurred, a lawsuit may be filed in any of a number of different counties or states – and that decision could make available or eliminate whole categories of damages from the range of possible recoveries. The reason is that laws vary from state to state. For example, in a wrongful death case, Alabama law only permits the recovery of punitive damages (those designed to punish and deter the wrongful conduct of the defendant). Alabama wrongful death law does not permit any recovery for the pre-death pain and suffering of a victim. However, the laws of other states do. Our deceased client in this case suffered injuries that led to her death, so filing this case in another state permitted us to recover damages that would not have been obtainable if the case had been filed in Alabama.

“Filing this case in another state was not easy. We had to navigate a complex web of statutes and appellate opinions to fight all of the legal challenges by the trucking company,” said Skip Finkbohner, a partner with Cunningham Bounds. “However, we were determined to do everything in our power to make sure that our client’s family received a settlement that accounted for all of the damages that their loved one suffered – not just some of them.”

Skip Finkbohner and Lucy Tufts served as co-lead counsel for the Plaintiff.

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