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$900,000 Settlement for Personal Injury

On February 7, 2006, Mark Forir, a 40 year-old Festus, Missouri man, was a rear seat passenger in a vehicle being driven eastbound on U.S. Highway 61 in Jefferson County, Missouri when a semi-tractor/trailer owned by Toon Trucking, Inc. of Potosi, Missouri traveling south on an Interstate 55 exit ramp failed to stop at the stop sign at the intersection of the exit ramp and Highway 61. The vehicle in which Forir was riding, which had the right-of-way, struck the passenger side of the trailer, became lodged under the trailer, and was drug over 200 feet, pinned under the trailer and up against a guardrail.

Forir sustained serious injuries, including a closed head injury, resulting in aggravation of a pre-existing traumatic brain injury, fractures to the cervical and lumbar spine, multiple rib fractures and multiple fractures to both upper extremities requiring closed reduction. Forir was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit at St. Louis University Hospital. A cervical halo was attached by screws to Forir’s skull, which he wore for nearly two and one-half months. One month following the accident, Forir was transferred to St. Mary’s Hospital Rehab Institution (“SSM”) for neurological rehabilitation. Forir remained at SSM for another month, receiving daily physical, occupational and speech therapy, before he was finally discharged to home to continue outpatient therapy.

The post-crash investigation revealed a separation in the service airline from the tractor to the trailer causing a loss of air. The truck driver testified she failed to stop at the stop sign because of sudden brake failure. Plaintiff alleged in his Petition numerous violations of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations regarding the maintenance and operation of the tractor-trailer.

After extensive discovery, the case settled for Nine Hundred Thousand Dollars ($900,000.00). The applicable commercial trucking insurance policy had limits of One Million Dollars ($1,000,000.00) per accident; after payment of other claims, remaining policy limits were approximately Nine Hundred Twenty Thousand Dollars ($920,000.00). Forir agreed to a $900,000.00 settlement.

Forir was totally disabled at the time of the car/truck crash, receiving Social Security disability benefits and Medicaid benefits. Total medical expense was a sum of $542,719.43. Medicaid paid a sum of $68,474.20 and the balance of the medical charges were written off. The Medicaid lien was compromised after factoring attorney’s fees and litigation expenses.

Type of Action: Personal Injury/Car-Truck Crash

Court/Case Number/Date: Circuit Court of Jefferson County, Missouri; Case No. 06JE-CC00426.

Caption: Mark E. Forir v. Toon Trucking, Inc. & Debra L. Singleton

Medical Expense: $542,719.43 ($68,474.20 paid by Medicaid)

Total Settlement: $900,000.00

Attorney for Plaintiff:

Jay Benson
The Benson Law Firm LLC
Kirksville, Missouri

Attorney for Defendants:

Edward S. Meyers
Rabbit, Pitzer & Snodgrass, P.C
St. Louis, Missouri
Attorney for Toon Trucking, Inc. & Debra L. Singleton