I represented Ms. Constance Newell, an 84 year old Bonita resident who tripped and fell in a poorly lit room when she was directed by the owner of a store (Glass Depot) to go into the room to look for a pen. First of all, no one should have gone into that room, much less an elderly lady. The room had debris on the floor, and Ms. Newell tripped and fell breaking her nose and sustaining multiple cuts and abrasions to her face. She also injured her spine. Ms. Newell found me and I became her lawyer as I became her voice against the insurance company for the business.
The insurance tried to settle out cheaply as they sometimes normally do. I filed a lawsuit against the property owner, and proceeded with discovery and fighting the insurance company. I associated in trial co-counsel attorney Edward "Skip" Babbitt. He and I make a good trial team on certain cases, and we were a formidable team against the insurance company. We maneverured the case toward an amicable resolution.
Trip and fall cases are tricky because most of the time the defense attonrey can blame part of the fault on the injured person. They do this to entice "negative attribution" from the jury. This means they try to have the members of the jury agree with the fact that the injured person was partly at fault by arguing the bias of saying the injured party should not have gone into the dimly lit room. Or, the injured person should have been paying more attention. We all have some degree of what psychologists call "negative attribution" and this is sometimes exploited at trial by a good defense lawyer.
However, back to the story of my client. Most of my client's medical care was paid through MEDICARE health insurance. I was able to negotiate a huge reduction in what was owed back to MEDICARE health insurance in order to maximize my client's net recovery.
San Diego Superior Court Case No. #37-2016-00013394-CU-PO-CTL
Case Name: CONSTANCE NEWELL V. ATHEER MATTI dba GLASS DEPOT
Trial counsel: Mark Blane, Esq.
Trial co-counsel: Edward J. "Skip" Babbitt, Esq.