Transportation

Wicker Smith attorneys are not only deeply experienced in handling all types of claims in transportation, but we do so in an efficient, cost-effective, and timely manner. Partnering with the transportation industry on a local, regional, and national level, we work hand-in-hand with insurance companies and business owners to help reduce overall risk. When claims arise, following a thorough initial evaluation, we formulate strategic defense plans at the onset of the matter.

Areas of representation include:

  • Automobile
  • Rapid Response Services
  • Fela/Railroad
  • Marine
  • Motor Coach and Specialized Passenger Carriers
  • Trucking
  • Aviation

The Wicker Smith transportation law team has served a diverse array of clients, representing domestic and foreign companies engaged in commercial motor truck, intermodal and air transportation of both passengers and goods. The firm has handled cases involving cargo and freight operations, air carriers and motor carriers on issues involving regulatory and security compliance, customs and logistics and hazardous materials.

With a full-service department of highly experienced transportation attorneys, Wicker Smith is a state leader in solving the legal problems of transportation companies, logistics providers and their customers. Wicker Smith’s rapid response team consists of attorneys, field adjustors and accident reconstruction experts who are available on a 24/7 basis to represent our trucking clients. Our rapid response team will secure the accident scene as quickly as possible to ensure that the scene and vehicles are surveyed and documented and that appropriate steps are taken to preserve all necessary evidence to help defend any future claims.

Wicker Smith’s attorneys have represented many segments of the transportation industry including insurance carriers and their insureds in all types of litigation. Our lawyers are well versed in defending automobile accidents ranging from catastrophic injury to minor impact/exaggerated injury cases. We are regularly in trial refuting “letter of protection” damages. The firm also frequently represents insurance companies in claims being made against them on behalf of their insureds under the Supplementary Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist insurance coverage. Our attorneys analyze each case to determine the potential insurance coverage issues, causation issues arising from product or design failure and any third-party liability claims.

Wicker Smith has experience handling trial, mediation and arbitration in transportation matters involving:

  • Personal injury and wrongful death claims
  • Property damage
  • Design defects
  • Manufacturing defects
  • Product failure
  • Third-party liability
  • Fraudulent and excessive claims

Favorable Verdict With Over $400,000 In Medical Bills

Attorneys: Theresa Strub Caccippio, Danielle C. Favata

This was a rear end accident in which our client was driving a box truck. Plaintiff had $469,000 in medical bills and underwent a level 2 cervical fusion, two right knee surgeries and multiple injections and a lumbar rhizotomy. Plaintiff asked for a verdict of $2.375 million. The jury came back with a verdict of $21,600 on past medical bills, no future medicals and no past or future pain and suffering.

Defense Verdict in a Low Impact Collision

Attorneys: Kurt M. Spengler, Taira H. Towne

This case involved a low impact motor vehicle accident case in which Defendants’ garbage truck collided with the rear of a non-party’s vehicle, which then collided with the rear of Plaintiff’s vehicle. Defendants admitted fault. Plaintiff complained of neck and low back injuries with treatment totaling $136,000, most of which was provided under Letters of Protection. Defendants argued that there was no mechanism for injury present for the neck or low back and thus Plaintiff’s injuries were not caused by the accident. Defendants further argued that the treatment providers had an interest in the outcome of Plaintiff’s case due to her treatment under Letters of Protection, and that the providers’ bills were inflated. At trial, Plaintiff sought damages totaling $1,078,371. The jury rendered a complete defense verdict.

Letters of Protection Case Results in Defense Verdict

Attorneys: Michael E. Reed, Amy Ray

Plaintiff claimed injuries to her cervical spine, lumbar spine, and shoulder following a low impact rear-end accident. Defense exposed a prior accident with near-identical complaints and a subsequent accident with near-identical complaints along with serious credibility issues and LOP billing practices. The jury found there was no causation and returned a total defense verdict.

Excellent Outcome in a Case With Admitted Causation and Liability

Attorneys: Jaime J. Baca

This was a rear-end collision case where liability and causation were both admitted. Plaintiff was 36 years old with a confirmed pars fracture of his L4-5, a lumbar herniation and multiple cervical herniations, with no prior complaints or injuries. He underwent a lumbar fusion and was recommended a cervical fusion at two levels. The medical bills were over $300,000 with another $150,000 in future medicals. Plaintiff asked the jury for $1.9 million dollars. The jury returned a verdict of $25,000, which was further reduced after set-offs. 

No Legal Cause Found by Jury in Rejected Tender Case

Attorneys: Robert E. Paradela

A rejected policy limits case that involved a T-bone collision with significant damage to both vehicles. Plaintiff was 30 years old at the time of the accident, with no prior medical history. He underwent a 2-level ACDF, multiple injections and lumbar rhizotomies. It was recommended that he have additional surgery to the cervical spine at two levels, as well as a future lumbar surgery. The medical bills were $270,000, with an $800,000 life care plan. The jury returned a verdict of no legal cause, and Plaintiff was awarded $0.

$4 Million Defense Verdict in Low-Impact Garbage Truck Accident

Attorneys: Kurt M. Spengler, Taira H. Towne, Devin Harvey

This case arose from a low impact garbage truck accident involving two plaintiffs. Plaintiff wife had five surgeries and $717k in boardable medications. She had prior complaints of low back pain, but no real treatment and no prior neck complaints. Plaintiff husband also sought back treatment and had $62k in boardable medications with no prior medical treatment. Plaintiffs asked the jury for $4 million, but the jury returned a total defense verdict.

Defense Verdict in Palm Beach County

Attorneys: J.J. “Spike” Wicker II, Rachel Studley

Plaintiff claimed to have suffered significant injuries including neck injuries requiring a discectomy with future surgical recommendations. Plaintiff claimed past and future medical bills at $467,796 with past and future pain and suffering at a minimum of $304,210 for a total request of a minimum of $771,996. The jury rejected Plaintiff’s claim and awarded zero.

Jury Returns a Verdict of No Liability After Plaintiff Asks for $4.4 Million

Attorneys: Jaime J. Baca

This was a case that was aggressively pursued by Plaintiff’s counsel and a demand below the $1 million policy limits was never made. The carrier offered $250k prior to trial and was willing to offer up to $500k to resolve the case. Plaintiff had $198k in past medicals and a life care plan for future damages. Plaintiff asked the jury for $4.4 million. The defense argued that our driver did nothing wrong and that the Plaintiff’s injuries were pre-existing, and that they should only award $11k if they thought our driver was liable. The jury returned a verdict of no liability.

Favorable Outcome in Alleged Traumatic Brain Injury Accident

Attorneys: Theresa Strub Caccippio, Brandon M. Polsky

Contested liability case in which Defendant turned left in front of Plaintiff. The Plaintiff made claims of permanent injuries to his neck and low back, as well as claims of PTSD, TBI, anxiety, depression and vision loss. Plaintiff asked for $5.3 million in the closing argument. The jury found that Plaintiff did not sustain permanent injury, and returned a verdict placing 40% negligence on the Plaintiff and awarding $113,985. 

Defense Verdict in a Traumatic Brain Injury Case with a $1.2 Million Demand

Attorneys: Kurt M. Spengler, Bryan A. Yasinsac

This was a rear end collision on I-95 in Brevard County, FL. Plaintiff was towing a flat-bed trailer at night without functioning lights on the trailer. Our client rear-ended the trailer due to the lack of lighting. The Plaintiff was taken from the scene to the hospital and claimed injuries to her neck, back, shoulders and knees as well as a traumatic brain injury from the accident. Plaintiff requested $1.2 million at trial, but our client received a defense verdict and $0 was awarded.

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