$46 million settlement
Following a two-week trial led by Jim Frickleton in the Circuit Court of the City of St. Louis, the jury returned a verdict against Consolidated Freightways Corporation on behalf of the parents of a couple killed in a collision with a tractor-trailer. Prior to trial, the plaintiffs settled with two additional trucking companies for an undisclosed amount. The $46 million verdict was the seventh largest decision in the United States in 2006.
$7.5 million Ray County, Missouri Judgment
Mike Rader obtained a $7,505,176.26 judgment in Ray County, Missouri on behalf of a family for the wrongful death of their daughter. On January 25, 2015, Rachel Bailey was traveling to Richmond, Missouri, from Independence, Missouri in a 2005 Nissan Altima. While traveling eastbound on 210 Highway, a 2001 Pontiac Grand Prix being operated by the defendant crossed the center line and hit Ms. Bailey’s Nissan head on. It was later determined that the defendant was legally intoxicated. As a result of the collision, Rachel was pronounced dead at the scene.
$7.5 million settlement
On August 27, 2016, the plaintiff was driving his Honda motorcycle southbound in the right lane of US Highway 69 approaching the intersection with Rhodus Road in Excelsior Springs, Missouri. This portion of the highway was four lanes with a posted 65 mph speed limit. At the same time the defendant truck driver was operating a 2014 Freightliner tractor-trailer on Rhodus Road, a two-lane road, toward the intersection with southbound US 69. The driver was en route to a pickup at a local factory that was scheduled to be delivered out of state. As the truck driver approached the intersection, he failed to yield to oncoming traffic and attempted to cross southbound US 69 directly in front of the motorcycle operated by the plaintiff. The plaintiff attempted to swerve and slow his bike, but it skidded on the roadway and violently struck the front passenger side of the tractor-trailer. The plaintiff survived the collision for several minutes before passing away at the scene as a result of his injuries.
The plaintiff left behind a wife and three minor children. During discovery, the plaintiffs’ counsel, Mike Rader and Michelle Marvel, uncovered evidence supporting claims for negligent entrustment and training against the defendant trucking company. The truck driver failed several road evaluations during his training with the trucking company regarding safely scanning at intersections before entering and yielding at intersections - the very issue causing this accident. It was also determined that the truck driver had failed the CDL exam on two occasions. Plaintiffs’ counsel contended that defendant trucking company knew or should have known that its driver presented a hazard due to his inability to safely scan at intersections. Also, the company failed to take reasonable measures to ensure that the driver was properly trained before entrusting the tractor-trailer to him. The case was resolved after two mediations and after the plaintiffs identified their six liability and damage experts.
$4.9 million settlement
The plaintiff was driving his pickup truck westbound on Interstate 470 as the defendant drove his car eastbound in the westbound lanes of the interstate. At the time, the defendant was returning to a local Kansas City hotel after a business meeting during a work trip.
The defendant driver had a blood-alcohol content of 0.386 – almost five times the legal limit when the collision occurred. The plaintiff sued the defendant driver and his employer in Jackson County Circuit Court.
The litigation team completed a significant discovery and policy analysis. The analysis focused on coverage and agency issues, preventing an argument that the defendant was acting outside the course and scope of his employment at the time of the crash.
In addition, Bartimus Frickleton Robertson Rader attorneys taking the time to determine the full extent of the plaintiff’s injuries and economic damages was crucial. Insurance companies representing the defendant agreed to a global settlement during a pretrial mediation.
$4.1 million settlement
After nearly twenty months of contentious litigation, Mike Rader and Michelle Marvel resolved a commercial motor vehicle (eighteen-wheeler) crash case for $4,100,000.00. The trucking accident occurred in Jackson County, Missouri and resulted in the death of a 72-year-old retired man. He was struck by the eighteen-wheeler as he attempted to enter an intersection on his motorcycle. After much discovery, it was determined the trucker was undertrained and unqualified to operate the truck. This was uncovered along with evidence showing the trucking company failed to enforce its own safety policies.
$2.5 million settlement
A drunk driving accident in Morgan County, Missouri, involved the plaintiff’s alleged negligence on behalf of the drunk driver. Also included was the negligent entrustment on behalf of the driver's mother for permitting him access to the vehicle despite his lengthy history of driving while intoxicated. Bartimus Frickleton Robertson Rader obtained the 11th-largest settlement in the state of Missouri for the plaintiff.
$2.285 million verdict
A father and his two children, ages 8 and 10, were proceeding westbound on Highway 350 in Kansas City, Missouri, when the plaintiff lost control of the vehicle as a result of a bump or pothole in the road surface. The vehicle spun out of control, and its right front corner eventually impacted a metal guardrail designed to shield vehicles from striking a concrete sign truss and metal signpost that was supporting an overhead highway sign.
The guardrail failed to redirect the errant vehicle. Instead, the plaintiffs’ vehicle climbed on top of the metal guardrail, became entrapped, and slid approximately 75 feet down the guardrail, where it violently collided with the concrete sign truss and metal sign pole. The 10-year-old minor plaintiff sitting in the front passenger seat sustained the most direct impact with the sign truss.
The Highway Commission claimed that the plaintiffs’ vehicle actually impacted the end treatment, which, due to its sloping height, allowed the vehicle to slide on top of the guardrail. The plaintiffs claimed that the point of impact occurred beyond the end treatment on the actual guardrail itself. Scuffmark evidence on the road and guardrail showed that the vehicle impacted the guardrail with its right front corner on the actual guardrail, beyond the end treatment.
Industry standards required a full guardrail height of 27 inches and the plaintiffs demonstrated that the height of the guardrail was only 18 inches, well below the standard industry height. The guardrail was too low due to several repaving projects during which the height of the pavement, but not the guardrail, was raised.
According to the plaintiffs’ expert, the substandard height allowed the plaintiffs vehicle to proceed over the guardrail and into the sign truss and metal pole. Had the guardrail been at full height, it would have redirected the plaintiffs’ vehicle back onto the traveled roadway.
The plaintiffs involved in the accident suffered permanent and life-threatening physical injuries, which required lengthy hospitalizations. One minor plaintiff suffered a traumatic brain injury, which has left her permanently disabled and in need of substantial medical treatment. An arbitration panel awarded $2.285 million for injuries sustained.
$1.5 million settlement
The accident occurred in the early morning hours while the plaintiff traveled on eastbound Interstate 70 from her family farm to a farmers market in Kansas City. While driving eastbound in the right-hand lane, a 2008 Gulf Stream RV being driven in the left-hand lane (fast lane) by the defendant crossed into the plaintiff’s lane of traffic, causing the vehicles to collide. At the time of the accident the defendant was returning to Ohio from a vacation in Colorado Springs. As a result of the accident, the eastbound lanes of I-70 were closed for over four hours.
There were no independent eyewitnesses to the accident, and neither plaintiff nor the defendant had any specific memory regarding the accident. Neither driver was cited as a result of the accident. However, as a result of an in-depth investigation concerning tire marks left on the roadway, the location of the accident debris and analysis of the damage to the vehicles, the investigator was able to confirm that the collision occurred as a result of the RV crossing into the plaintiff’s lane of traffic, leaving no time for her to react.
During the course of the case it was also discovered that the driver of the RV had been pulled over earlier that morning by local law enforcement in another state for a welfare check due to a report of careless driving. The case was settled by Mike Rader for $1.5 million.
While the plaintiff was test-driving his brother’s 1933 Ford, a Honda Accord driven by the defendant came up from behind at a high rate of speed, tried to pass the plaintiff on the left and hit the driver’s side of the Ford. The plaintiff suffered fractured ribs, scapular and pelvis; a T1 fracture; a subarachnoid hemorrhage; and temporal lobe hemorrhage.
Bartimus Frickleton Robertson Rader attorneys conducted extensive discovery before defendant acquiesced to liability. The litigation also involved underinsured and uninsured policies held by the defendant. The case was settled for $700,000.
Bartimus Frickleton Robertson Rader partner Kip Robertson achieved a $500,000 settlement on behalf of a bicyclist who suffered serious injuries after being struck by a car at an intersection. The driver carried $250,000 in automobile liability coverage, and the bicyclist had an additional $250,000 in underinsured motorist coverage. Robertson was able to obtain both policy limits, the maximum insurance coverage available, on behalf of the bicyclist.