By: Jason Grant
Partner Carol Sigmond was quoted in the September 13, 2017 New York Law Journal article “Crane Damages, Even Reduced, Still Could Be a ‘Game-Changer’.”
A Manhattan appeals court has more than cut in half the wrongful death damages awarded to the families of two men killed in a horrific 2008 crane collapse. But lawyers for the families, as well as defense counsel, said the remaining amounts awarded may still be groundbreaking, especially in the area of pre-impact terror damages.
An Appellate Division, First Department, panel cut the amounts awarded by a Manhattan jury in two consolidated lawsuits from a total of $95 million to $35 million, calling the awards “excessive” and a “material deviation” from previous verdicts in wrongful death cases.
But lawyers for family members of Donald Leo, a crane operator who plummeted to his death in the May 2008 accident on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, and for construction worker Ramadan Kurtaj, still viewed the panel’s decision as a potential “game-changer” for plaintiffs’ lawyers in the personal injury and construction accident arenas.