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The following summaries are intended to provide quick summaries of some aspects of recent CT legal developments on accident and insurance issues.  Most of these matters were not handled by Jackson O'Keefe, LLP.  The summaries are provided as a news summary only.  The summaries are not comprehensive, and readers are referred to the primary sources for full details.  These summaries are not legal advice.  You should consult with an attorney with regard to your situation.

Category: Personal Injury

PERSONAL INJURY– Superior Court holds that Good Samaritan statute does not apply to for-profit business

1/24/2017 | Matthew J. O'Keefe
mjokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

The Superior Court holds that EMTs working for American Medical Response of Connecticut were not entitled to Good Samaritan immunity under General Statutes §52-557b.  The court holds that the Act does not apply to for-profit business entities that provide emergency medical services.  The court holds t ...

DEFECTIVE PRODUCT LAW – Connecticut Supreme Court rejects adoption of Restatement (Third) test for product liability

1/24/2017 | Joseph M. Busher Jr.
jmbusher@jacksonokeefe.com

A majority of the Connecticut Supreme Court affirms its allegiance to Section 402A of the Restatement (Second) of Torts, which sets forth a modified consumer expectation test known as the “risk-utility” test for determining whether a product is “defective”.  The Supreme Court rejects the ...

PERSONAL INJURY DAMAGES – Plaintiff awarded $100,477.00 for broken jaw

1/24/2017 | Philip R. Dunn, Jr.
prdunn@jacksonokeefe.com

In a court trial, the plaintiff was a high school student who had been struck without provocation or warning by a fellow student.  The plaintiff allegedly sustained a broken jaw and was unable to fully participate in high school graduation.  He also had lost wages in the amount of $500.00.  Medical ex ...

PERSONAL INJURY DAMAGES – Jury award of $120,000.00 for fall outside police station

1/24/2017 | Matthew J. O'Keefe
mjokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

The plaintiff allegedly tripped and fell on a defective sidewalk when he left the Town of Monroe’s police department.  The jury awarded economic damages of $9,296.00 and noneconomic damages for pain and suffering in the amount of $110,704.00.  The sole issue on the plaintiff’s Motion to Set Asi ...

DAMAGES – Connecticut Supreme Court holds that collateral source reduction is not allowed where there is any right of subrogation by the health insurer

1/24/2017 | Peter K. O'Keefe
pkokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

Connecticut General Statutes §52-225a permits a collateral source reduction except “that there shall be no reduction for . . . a collateral source for which a right of subrogation exists.”  In the case before the court, the plaintiff had been injured in a motor vehicle accident.  The jury ...

CT Civil Procedure: Erasure Act did not preclude police from producing records in response to subpoena:

10/31/2016 | Peter K. O'Keefe
pkokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

The Superior Court holds that the Erasure Act does not bar a defendant’s attempt to subpoena records from the police department regarding a criminal matter for which charges were ultimately nolled.  The defendant in a civil lawsuit subpoenaed certain records from the Stamford Police Department concerning ...

Accident law: Superior Court holds that award of $5,000.00 in noneconomic damages is not inappropriate

10/31/2016 | Matthew J. O'Keefe
mjokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

A jury awarded economic damages totaling $15,964.00, but only $5,000.00 in noneconomic damages for pain and suffering.  The court holds that the award failed to shock the conscience.  The court states that while the award could be described as “parsimonious”, it did not fall outside of the limi ...

Personal Injury: In court trial, father struck by baseball at a sporting facility receives $32,000.00 for eye injury

10/31/2016 | Matthew J. O'Keefe
mjokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

The father of a child who was practicing hitting balls at the Connecticut Sportsplex in December of 2010 alleged that the facility was negligent.  A sign at the facility warned parents and observers to be “outside of cages and tunnels or behind proper protective screens during session”.  The fa ...

PREMISES LIABILITY: Connecticut Appellate Court holds that mode of operation rule does not apply to slip and fall in pet store

8/12/2016 | Philip R. Dunn, Jr.
prdunn@jacksonokeefe.com

The plaintiff alleged that while in the defendant pet store, she slipped and fell on a puddle of dog urine and sustained injuries.  The defendant allowed leashed animals in the store.  The store manager testified that he expected occasional pet messes as a result and that there were sanitation stations thr ...

ACCIDENT LAW: Jackson O’Keefe obtains defendant’s verdict for homeowner who hired handyman

2016-07-21 | Philip R. Dunn, Jr.
prdunn@jacksonokeefe.com

On July 21, 2016, Jackson O’Keefe, LLP partner, Philip R. Dunn, Jr., obtained a defendant’s verdict at the Hartford Superior Court.  Attorney Dunn’s client was a homeowner who hired a handyman to do some fall cleanup tasks while he was at a walkathon.  He instructed the plaintiff t ...

INJURY LAW: Superior Court holds that a railroad platform does not qualify as a sidewalk under defective highway statute

6/23/2016 | Philip R. Dunn, Jr.
prdunn@jacksonokeefe.com

The plaintiff allegedly fell through a gap in a railroad platform when disembarking from a train in New Haven.  Suit was brought against the railroad and the State Transportation Commissioner.  The Commissioner moved to dismiss on the grounds of sovereign immunity.  In opposition, the plaintiff argued ...

INJURY LAW: Superior Court holds that an exception to governmental immunity does not apply for loose bolt on playscape:

6/1/2016 | Joseph M. Busher Jr.
jmbusher@jacksonokeefe.com

The minor plaintiff was a kindergartener attending public elementary school in East Haven.  He was injured when he was climbing a ladder on a playscape that included a tower, slides, a ramp and a ladder.  The plaintiff allegedly fell and was injured due to a loose bolt on the highest rung of the ladder.&nb ...

WRONGFUL DEATH LAW: Appellate Court reverses summary judgment for constables, finding issue of fact as to exception to governmental immunity:

6/1/2016 | Peter K. O'Keefe
pkokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

The estate of a drowning victim brought a negligence action against two constables from the Town of Westbrook.  The Tax Collector informed two constables that there was a woman who needed medical attention in a field just up the road.  She said that the woman was wearing a shirt and pants, without a coat o ...

INJURY LAW: Superior Court dismisses defective highway claim based upon inadequate notice:

6/1/2016 | Matthew J. O'Keefe
mjokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

The Superior Court dismisses a pedestrian’s claim against the State based upon an inadequate written notice of the incident.  The plaintiff alleged that he was injured in a pedestrian crosswalk at the intersection of East Main Street near Interstate 95 in Bridgeport.  The mandatory written notice req ...

Accident Law: Jackson O’Keefe obtains defendant’s verdict for owner on defective premises claim:

6/1/2016 | Philip R. Dunn, Jr.
prdunn@jacksonokeefe.com

Jackson O’Keefe, LLP partner, Philip R. Dunn, Jr., obtained a defendant’s verdict on May 19, 2016, in the Hartford Superior Court.  Attorney Dunn represented a gentleman who purchased a single family home for his uncle so that his cousin  and her five children could reside in the house.  T ...

Injury Law -- Superior Court denies Motion to Set Aside $10.8 million verdict against personal trainer

5/18/2016 | Joseph M. Busher Jr.
jmbusher@jacksonokeefe.com

A physician claimed that his personal trainer allegedly pushed him to exercise too hard on a fitness center’s exercise machine.  The jury found that the plaintiff, a physician, was 25% responsible, reducing the $14.5 million verdict to $10.8 million.  The plaintiff allegedly suffered a massive stroke ...

ACCIDENT AND INJURY LAW – Superior Court holds that mode of operation rule does not apply, but denies summary judgment with regard to ordinary premises liability claim

5/5/2016 | Matthew J. O'Keefe
mjokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

The plaintiff brought suit against Home Depot, alleging that she was injured by a large piece of melamine that fell from the shelf onto the floor, striking her left foot.  In granting summary judgment as to a mode of operation portion of the Complaint, the court holds that the mode of operation rule does not ap ...

ACCIDENT AND INJURY LAW – Attorney’s testimony as to client with Alzheimer’s held inadmissible

5/5/2016 | Philip R. Dunn, Jr.
prdunn@jacksonokeefe.com

The Connecticut Superior Court grants a motion to preclude testimony from the plaintiff’s prior attorney with regard to conversations as to how the plaintiff allegedly slipped and fell on a sidewalk.  The plaintiff had testified at a deposition that she could not recall the slip and fall due to her Alzhei ...

CONSTRUCTION LAW – Design contractor could not create a public nuisance

5/5/2016 | Peter K. O'Keefe
pkokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

The Connecticut Appellate Court holds that since a nuisance is a condition on property, rather than the act that creates that condition, a design professional who designed an allegedly dangerous condition could not be held liable on a nuisance theory.  The Appellate Court affirmed a lower court’s ruling t ...

INJURY LAW - U.S. District Court jury awards $5.3 million in product liability claim involving forklift

2016-03-11 | Matthew J. O'Keefe
mjokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

The plaintiff's leg was crushed and subsequently amputated as a result of a workplace forklift accident.  The forklift reportedly malfunctioned and had a history of getting caught on objects, allegedly due to the lifting part of the machine being wider than the platform on which the driver stood.  The plai ...

INJURY LAW - Superior Court holds that child in utero cannot assert loss of parental consortium claim

2016-03-11 | Kathryn M. Cunningham
kmcunningham@jacksonokeefe.com

The plaintiff claimed that on June 3, 2013, the child's father was involved in a motorcycle accident and ultimately died as a result thereof.  The minor plaintiff was subsequently born.  The plaintiff alleged a claim for loss of parental consortium, claiming that she never had an opportunity to meet her fa ...

ACCIDENT LAW - District Court grants Target's motion for summary judgment based upon inapplicability of mode of operation

2016-03-01 | Joseph M. Busher Jr.
jmbusher@jacksonokeefe.com

The Second Circuit Court of Appeals affirms summary judgment for Target.  The plaintiff sued Target alleging negligence in creating or failing to remedy a dangerous condition.  He allegedly slipped and fell on an unknown substance, which was described as an orange liquid.  The fall occurred in the inf ...

ACCIDENT LAW - Superior Court holds that Board of Education fundraiser does not qualify as proprietary activity

2016-03-11 | Peter K. O'Keefe
pkokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

On the Hartford Board of Education's motion for summary judgment, the court concludes that a school-sponsored fundraiser to help support other school activities did not constitute a proprietary as opposed to governmental activity, even if the fundraiser made a "profit".  The plaintiff was injured while attendin ...

MUNICIPAL LAW - Superior Court awards $1.01 million for student eye injury

2016-03-11 | Peter K. O'Keefe
pkokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

The plaintiff was a student at the nursing academy at Hartford High School and was walking to science class when the lights turned off and another student threw a bottle that struck the plaintiff in the face.  The plaintiff alleged negligent supervision against the Hartford Board of Education and the City of Ha ...

CT ACCIDENT AND INJURY LAW -- Superior Court holds that claim for intentional infliction of emotional distress was not stated based upon prevention of relative from visiting hospital patient

2016-01-25 | Joseph M. Busher

Superior Court holds that allegations that a private hospital barred a relative from visiting a patient with brain cancer were not sufficient to allege extreme and outrageous conduct as required to establish a claim for intentional infliction of emotional distress

...

CT ACCIDENT AND INJURY LAW -- Superior Court allows claim of recklessness based upon lead paint poisoning to stand

2016-01-25 | Philip R. Dunn
prdunn@jacksonokeefe.com

The Complaint contained allegations that the landlord knew that the apartment at issue contained high levels of lead and that the landlord consciously disregarded the risk of harm by leasing the apartment to a family with children. 

...

CT ACCIDENT AND INJURY LAW -- Connecticut Appellate Court reaffirms requirement of actual or constructive notice in premises liability area

2016-01-25 | Matthew J. O'Keefe
mjokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

The plaintiff slipped and fell on an icy sidewalk.  She sued the property owner, a hospital, alleging negligence.

...

ACCIDENT AND INJURY LAW -- Connecticut Appellate Court affirms summary judgment for town on claim arising from allegedly defective playground

2016-01-25 | Philip R. Dunn
prdunn@jacksonokeefe.com

A minor was injured when a seesaw he was riding on allegedly crashed to the ground.  The plaintiff claimed that there was insufficient shock-absorbing material beneath the seesaw. 

...

CT Dog Injury Law: Conn. Appellate Court addresses alleged rabid dog

2012-05-16 | Peter K. O'Keefe
pkokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

In a ruling release April 24, 2012 the Connecticut Appellate Court stated in part: SHELDON, J. This case involves a dispute between a homeowner and her children’s babysitter concerning an incident in which the babysitter, while caring for the children, claimed that she was potentially exposed to the rab ...

CT Personal Injury Law: $44,899 Awarded to Tenant Who Allegedly Fell on Stairs

2012-06-13 | Matthew J. O'Keefe
mjokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

CT Personal Injury Law:  $44,899 Awarded to Tenant Who Allegedly Fell on Stairs Case:  Montaperto v. Markland Court:  Tolland J.D., at Rockville Doc. No.:  CV11-5005499S;  Court Opinion By: Klaczak, J.T.R. Date:  Feb. 7, 2012 At a hearing in damages, a ...

CT Personal Injury Law: $50,000 For Noneconomic Damages Did Not Shock Sense of Justice

2012-08-14 | Matthew J. O'Keefe
mjokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

CT Personal Injury Law: $50,000 For Noneconomic Damages Did Not Shock Sense of Justice CASE:  Johnson v. Pike COURT:  Connecticut Appellate Court DOC. NO.:  AC 32695; COURT OPINION BY:  DiPentima, CJ. DATE:  June 12, 2012   It is not the size of ...

Farmington Jackson O'Keefe lawyer Philip R. Dunn, Jr., obtains favorable jury verdict in personal injury action

2013-03-07 | Philip R. Dunn
prdunn@jacksonokeefe.com

On March 7, 2013, Jackson O'Keefe partner, Philip R. Dunn, Jr., obtained a defendant's verdict at the New Britain Superior Court in a personal injury action arising out of an accidental fall down. Attorney Dunn represented the owner of a two family house who was sued by a paper carrier claiming that she fell on an i ...

Connecticut Appellate Court Holds That Discretionary Act Immunity Precludes A Claim Arising Out Of The Parking Of A Fire Apparatus Across A Roadway

2013-09-10 | Jay W. Jackson
jwjackson@jacksonokeefe.com

While responding to an accident on Interstate 95, a municipal firefighter parked a fire truck with emergency lights activated across two lanes to shield emergency responders from traffic.  An approaching vehicle struck the fire truck, killing the driver and one passenger.  Affirming summary judgment for th ...

Child killed by vehicle on October 20, 2013 in East Hartford

2013-10-21 | Kathryn M. Cunningham
kmcunningham@jacksonokeefe.com

A 2 year old child was struck by an SUV that was backing up on Morris Court in East Hartford on Sunday, October 20, 2013. The child was reportedly playing in his driveway when the accident occurred. The SUV was backing out when it struck the child. Our law firm understands how devastating the pedestrian and motorcyc ...

November 6, 2013 fatal East Windsor two car crash

2013-11-07 | Kathryn M. Cunningham
kmcunningham@jacksonokeefe.com

The collision occurred at about 5 pm on Route 140/North Road when two cars collided near a Dunkin Donuts. The driver of one car was killed and the other driver was seriously injured. No photos or other details were publicly available. Our law firm understands how devastating car accidents can be. We vigorously pursu ...

Jackson O'Keefe partner Philip R. Dunn, Jr. obtains favorable jury verdict in slip-and-fall case

2013-12-20 | Philip R. Dunn
prdunn@jacksonokeefe.com

On December 19, 2013, Jackson O’Keefe partner, Philip R. Dunn, Jr., obtained a defendant’s verdict in the New Britain Superior Court in the matter of Watlington v. Stevenson, Docket No. CV-11-6011572.  The plaintiff alleged that she slipped on a lose board in a kitchen while assisting the defendant& ...

Superior Court denies a motion for summary judgment based on governmental immunity in claim arising out of fall at train station

2014-02-07 | Philip R. Dunn
prdunn@jacksonokeefe.com

MUNICIPAL LAW – The Superior Court denies a motion for summary judgment based on governmental immunity in claim arising out of fall at train station:  The plaintiff fell when her foot was allegedly caught on a raised threshold exiting the Westport Greens Farm Railroad Station.  The threshold w ...

Superior Court refuses to enforce health club waiver

2014-07-22 | Philip R. Dunn
prdunn@jacksonokeefe.com

The plaintiff fell off of a Bosu Ball after being placed on it by a trainer at the gym.  The Superior Court grants the plaintiff’s motion for summary judgment on a special defense asserting a waiver of any claims for negligence against the gym and its employees.  Based on the gym’s presumed exp ...

CONNECTICUT ACCIDENT LAW – Appellate Court holds that neither common law indemnity nor contractual indemnity applied to negligent investigation

2014-09-16 | Matthew J. O'Keefe
mjokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

The Appellate Court affirms judgment for a third party defendant.  The claim arose out of sexual harassment of the third party defendant’s employee by a security company employee.  Suit was brought by the female employee against the security company and the harassing employee.  In finding no mer ...

MUNICIPAL LAW – High school student injured due to allegedly defective pathway on way home not subject to imminent harm

2014-11-03 | Philip R. Dunn
prdunn@jacksonokeefe.com

The Superior Court grants judgment to the defendant school based on governmental immunity.  The plaintiff was on a trail about 500 feet from the high school when the fall occurred, when the plaintiff’s girlfriend fell and the plaintiff attempted to catch her,  and was injured.  The court stated ...

BODILY INJURY LAW – CT Supreme Court recognizes bystander emotional distress in medical malpractice context

2015-05-11 | Peter K. O'Keefe
pkokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

Outside the medical malpractice context a tort plaintiff seeking to recover for bystander emotional distress must prove: (1) the bystander is closely related to the primary victim of the accident or injury, (2) the bystander’s emotional distress is caused by the contemporaneous sensory perception of the event ...

BODILY INJURY LAW – Superior Court allows mode of operation claim at tire store

2015-05-11 | Joseph M. Busher
jmbusher@jacksonokeefe.com

In Fisher v. Big Y Foods, Inc., 298 Conn. 414, 423 (2010), the CT Supreme Court held “that the mode of operation rule, as adopted in Connecticut, does not apply generally to all accidents caused by transitory hazards in self-service retail establishments, but rather, only to those accidents that result from pa ...

BODILY INJURY LAW – Superior Court reduces $880k pain and suffering award to $60k

2015-05-11 | Matthew J. O'Keefe
mjokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

The plaintiff’s decedent slipped and fell on ice, and then died after approximately several hours before she was discovered face down on a sidewalk at her apartment complex.  The jury’s award was found excessive and shocked the court’s conscience.  The amount was reduced to $60k an ...

CONNECTICUT TORT LAW – Housing Authority had duty to inspect smoke detectors

2015-07-13 | Peter K. O'Keefe
pkokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

The Superior Court holds that a housing authority issuing rent vouchers has a duty to inspect for functioning smoke detectors, and either warn or remove tenants from units with non-functioning detectors.  The case involved the death of three occupants and bystander emotional distress claims.  The Court hel ...

CONNECTICUT ACCIDENT LAW – Firefighters Rule did not apply to off-duty State Trooper

2015-09-10 | Peter K. O'Keefe
pkokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

The Connecticut Superior Court holds that the Firefighters Rule does not apply to an off-duty State Trooper.  The State Trooper allegedly injured his hand while extricating an unconscious vehicle operator following a single car accident.  The Trooper sued the operator, alleging that the driver was negligen ...

CONNECTICUT ACCIDENT LAW – Shopping center owner did not owe duty to trespasser

2015-09-10 | Matthew J. O'Keefe
mjokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

The plaintiff allegedly fell in a drainage ditch along a parking lot between two plazas.  The plaintiff was present to meet her daughter and to visit a restaurant at the adjacent plaza, where the parking lot was full.  The plaintiff was not present to visit any of the tenant businesses for the lot in which ...

Connecticut Supreme Court recognizes a new cause of action for children based on loss of a parent’s consortium

2015-09-29 | Joseph M. Busher
jmbusher@jacksonokeefe.com

In a ruling to be officially released on October 6, 2015, the CT Supreme Court has overruled a 1998 decision and now recognizes a claim for parental consortium, which is a claim by a child based on the loss of affection, companionship and services suffered as a result of a parent’s injury.  There are some ...

CT MUNICIPAL LAW – Appellate Court affirms judgment for plaintiff in defective highway action

2015-10-05 | Philip R. Dunn
prdunn@jacksonokeefe.com

The plaintiff was allegedly walking in a street since there was no sidewalk.  She allegedly stepped into a pothole and tripped and fell.  Trial court found that the plaintiff was walking as carefully as she could and as close as possible to the edge of the road and was not contributorily negligent.  T ...

ACCIDENT LAW – Absence of “No Trespassing” signs held to constitute implied consent to presence on property

2015-10-05 | Matthew J. O'Keefe
mjokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

The Superior Court holds that a property owner who does not post a “No Trespassing” sign or otherwise restrict entry onto the property can be found to have provided implied consent to a salesperson entering the property.  On the homeowner’s Motion for Summary Judgment, the defendant argued tha ...

INJURY LAW – Superior Court dismisses action against physical therapist employed by school based on failure to provide certificate of good faith inquiry

2015-11-06 | Peter K. O'Keefe
pkokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

Connecticut General Statutes §52-190a requires that a plaintiff making a claim against a healthcare provider obtained an opinion from a similar healthcare provider prior to the commencement of suit, stating that in the similar healthcare provider’s opinion, there exists a basis for a claim against the pro ...

INJURY LAW – Connecticut Appellate Court reverses, in part, summary judgment for the Metropolitan District Commission arising out of flooding allegations

2015-11-06 | Philip R. Dunn
prdunn@jacksonokeefe.com

The plaintiff alleged that she sustained property damage and personal injury as a result of two incidents in which raw sewage flooded her basement.  The first incident allegedly occurred in October of 2005, and the second incident occurred in March of 2011.  Following the first incident, the defendant inst ...

CT WRONGFUL DEATH – Connecticut Appellate Court reverses summary judgment for fire marshal arising out of fire at affordable housing unit

2015-11-13 | Matthew J. O'Keefe
mjokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

The case arose out of a fire that occurred in an affordable housing unit in Bridgeport. The fire allegedly originated in the plaintiff/decedent’s oven in the apartment. ...

CT INJURY LAW – Premises liability claim allowed for wedding guest injured on dance floor

2015-11-13 | Peter K. O'Keefe
pkokeefe@jacksonokeefe.com

Where the plaintiff that alleged that a dance floor was too crowded to be safe, the Superior Court held that a claim was stated for premises liability. The plaintiff was attending a wedding reception and allegedly slipped and fell while dancing. ...

CT INJURY LAW – Superior Court strikes claim based upon landlord’s alleged duty to protect one lessee from another

2015-11-13 | Philip R. Dunn
prdunn@jacksonokeefe.com

It was alleged that the landlord knew or should have known that a dangerous individual with a history of criminal activity resided on the leased premises, such that the landlord should have known that a substantial likelihood existed that the individual would endanger the safety of other individuals on the premises. ...


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