Personal Injury

A personal injury occurs when a person suffers physical or psychological injury as a result of an accident. The most common “accident” claims are traffic and highway accidents, work-place accidents, at-home injuries, and medical and dental accidents and/or negligence as well as industrial diseases. An “accident” may also be the result of an intentional tort, such as false arrest, invasion of privacy, slander, libel, defamation or other harmful conduct.

The Law Firm of Duffy + Fulginiti can quickly assemble an expert team of attorneys with the skills best suited to address the individual circumstances of a wide variety of personal injury cases. The firm provides its clients with personalized attention and assists its clients in making informed decisions. Duffy + Fulginiti has an outstanding reputation for providing the victims of personal injuries with effective and efficient legal representation.

  • In Doe, Duffy +Fulginiti negotiated a record-setting settlement, of which $54,350,000 was not confidential, for a young teenager who was helping in a food truck owned by her aunt when an explosion in the truck left her with disfiguring burns on over 65% of her body. It was determined that the cause of the explosion was a propane tank, and further discovered that a U-Haul outlet where the food truck’s tanks were taken regularly to be replenished was filling defective tanks illegally and with uncertified personnel. This settlement is reported to be the largest Pennsylvania state court pre-verdict settlement in history for a minor. It is also reported to be the second largest pre-verdict settlement in Pennsylvania state court history. It was negotiated as part of a larger settlement, of which $160,000,000 was not confidential, for four victims of the explosion.
  • A young man, traveling with his school on a field trip, suffered a paralyzing injury. Duffy + Fulginiti filed a lawsuit against the school on his behalf and obtained a confidential settlement of $36,000,000.
  • In NCO Group, Duffy + Fulginiti obtained a $28,200,000 verdict for property owners who suffered catastrophic losses due to failures in construction sequencing. The errors ultimately resulted in the virtual destruction of several businesses from flooding. While defendants argued that they were either not negligent or that their mistakes did not cause the damages suffered by the plaintiffs, the jury clearly found otherwise.
  • In Rice, the Pennsylvania Superior Court affirmed a $12,400,000 verdict (obtained in addition to a $3,500,000 settlement previously received) which, combined with interest and delay damages, totaled over $22,500,000. This affirmation was for the retrial of a 2006 case, where Duffy + Fulginiti client Leroy Rice, a forklift operator, was crushed and partially paralyzed by pallets of frozen food when the warehouse racking he was working near collapsed upon him.
  • In Campbell, Duffy + Fulginiti won a $21,400,000 verdict on behalf of a diabetic man for treatment he received in the emergency room of Temple University Hospital. When Ronald Campbell was taken to the hospital in October of 2007, he was administered glucagons and glucopaste by emergency medical technicians, then discharged to family members, who found him unresponsive in bed the next morning. The defense argued that the treatment and discharge was proper, as Mr. Campbell had been brought to the hospital 11 times for high or low blood sugar levels in the five years prior (including one visit two days earlier), and that he failed to properly manage his diabetes by not complying with medical advice. However, the firm successfully argued that diabetics who suffer from repeated episodes of hypoglycemia develop a condition termed 'hypoglycemic unawareness' in which the brain becomes less sensitive to lower and lower glucose levels.
  • Duffy + Fulginiti obtained a confidential $21,000,000 settlement against a bar for negligent security and overserving a patron who eventually shot a young man in the parking lot of the bar, rendering the man a paraplegic, as well as a judgment against the patron who shot the plaintiff.
  • Duffy + Fulginiti obtained a $20,500,000 confidential settlement from a major Philadelphia hospital and its doctors based on proof that the doctors failed to appreciate distress on a fetal monitoring strip. The doctors delayed performing a cesarean section which resulted in anoxic injury to the child and severe cerebral palsy.
  • A $19,250,000 confidential settlement was obtained for a construction worker who became paralyzed due to inadequate safety precautions on a job site, which resulted in the worker being struck in the back by a beam during crane operations. The case focused on the negligent operations of the site in general.
  • In Lewis, Duffy + Fulginiti represented a Philadelphia doctor in a five-week trial where a jury awarded $15,700,000 to the doctor and occupants of a car she had rented after an accident stripped her of the use of her left arm and her medical practice. Attorneys for a Toyota dealer under contract to provide maintenance on the vehicle argued that the client had been speeding and the car hydroplaned, but the firm prevailed in persuading jurors that it was mechanical failure due to faulty maintenance and service. The verdict was later affirmed by the PA Superior Court, then challenged and upheld in PA Supreme Court resulting in a recovery of over $19,500,000 with interest.
  • A $15,000,000 confidential medical malpractice settlement was obtained against a hospital for a 33-year-old woman who suffered a stroke weeks after being discharged from the emergency room despite similar complaints. She now has a condition known as locked-in syndrome; much of her body and face is paralyzed, although she can communicate by performing certain eye movements (up and down) and slightly squeezing her right hand. Despite her care occurring in Montgomery County, Duffy + Fulginiti was successful in establishing and keeping the action in Philadelphia County.
  • Duffy + Fulginiti obtained a $13,500,000 confidential settlement from a major Philadelphia hospital and its doctors based on our proof that an attending maternal fetal medicine physician and residents who were asked to monitor a mother's labor failed to see that an increase in her glucose level was caused by a failure to properly administer insulin. The doctors delayed initiating delivery for the child, resulting in an anoxic injury, causing severe cerebral palsy.
  • Duffy + Fulginiti obtained a $12,000,000 settlement for client Terry Whittlesey, a young man who, while a passenger in a car on his way to a vacation, was rear-ended by a commercial truck. The trucking company denied all fault associated with the accident and only agreed to the settlement after jury selection was completed and the trial was about to begin. The settlement, which was reported as one of the largest in Pennsylvania that year, enabled Mr. Whittlesey to move into a home specially constructed to accommodate his ongoing physical needs.
  • Luong Nguyen, a 53-year-old farmer, husband, and father of five suffered second and third degree burns on 25% of his body following a portable stove malfunction. Duffy + Fulginiti, along with our product experts, cited issues with packaging, labeling, and a lack of instructions, both in the package and from the seller. The seller tendered its full $1,000,000 insurance policy, and a $9,300,000 verdict was obtained against the manufacturer.
  • Duffy + Fulginiti obtained a confidential settlement of $9,900,000 for a young man and his wife after the man suffered a traumatic brain injury when he fell from a stationary bus after leaning against the door, not realizing the door latch was not working properly.
  • A young woman on her way to work was struck from behind by a box truck and subsequently died from her injuries. Duffy + Fulginiti brought suit against the driver and his employer and successfully obtained a confidential $9,000,000 settlement after it was shown through discovery that the corporate defendant provided little or no supervision over the driver who had repeated motor vehicle violations.
  • Duffy + Fulginiti successfully negotiated a confidential pre-litigation settlement of $7,500,000 - without discovery - against a parking facility and its management company following an assault on a patron who, in approaching her car after leaving a store, was the victim of an attack. While the commercial defendants argued that the criminal defendants were the culpable parties, the firm amassed significant evidence of local crimes and conducted a nationwide search of the defendants’ other parking facilities to establish that the negligent security system at the facility in issue allowed the criminal defendants to perpetrate their crimes.
  • A young professional man visited a hospital ER in the region complaining of back pain, chest pain, headache and cough. Even though a number of tests indicated emergency surgery was needed that could not be performed at that hospital, the hospital delayed the transfer of the patient to another hospital and failed to include critical test results when the patient was finally transferred. Sadly, the patient died. The defendants argued that underlying medical issues, including Marfan syndrome and mitral valve prolapse, were contributing factors out of their control, that the patient was in significant end-organ dysfunction upon arrival and that he would not have survived the surgery. However, Duffy + Fulginiti obtained a $7,500,000 settlement for his surviving wife and young child.
  • Duffy + Fulginiti obtained a combination verdict and settlement exceeding $7,250,000 for two clients who received gunshot injuries while exiting a bar. Fortunately both clients survived the shooting, but suffered orthopedic and other internal injuries. The clients brought negligent security claims against the bar and claims against the shooter, and the firm worked to establish a significant criminal history at the establishment, putting the bar on notice of the potential for future crimes.
  • In Eap, a combined policy limits settlement of $7,000,000 was reached for a 34-year-old small business owner rendered a paraplegic when a slab of stone fell upon him from a table used to fabricate stone into decorative countertops. Duffy + Fulginiti obtained the settlement from the table manufacturer and two distributors.
  • In Voce, Duffy + Fulginiti's client, a 49-year-old union glazier, suffered a permanent hip injury when the ladder he was working on collapsed into a nearby ditch, resulting in his inability to return to work. The jury returned a $6,500,000 verdict for Mr. and Mrs. Voce, finding the general contractor negligent by providing an unsafe working environment for our client and his co-workers.
  • In Straub, Duffy + Fulginiti obtained a $4,500,000 verdict in favor of Doug Straub, a construction worker, and his wife, Carol. Mr. Straub suffered many broken bones and a closed head injury following the failure of a sewer plug which exploded, breaking bones in his face, arms and legs. The verdict was appealed to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court twice and was ultimately affirmed resulting, with delay damages, in payment of approximately $6,500,000. The verdict was reported as one of the largest verdicts in Pennsylvania that year.

  • In Kelly, Duffy + Fulginiti settled Reverend Crawford Kelly, Jr.'s claim for $6,000,000, the full insurance policy limit available in the litigation, after Reverend Kelly’s vehicle was struck by a tractor-trailer, causing his vehicle to flip and resulting in the traumatic amputation of his arm. The settlement for the incident, which occurred in New Jersey, was reported as one of the largest verdicts in the state that year.
  • In Divon, Duffy + Fulginiti won a $6,000,000 verdict against Wills Eye Hospital for Peter Divon, a forklift operator who suffered blindness in one eye as a result of an infection which developed following a surgery to repair a detached retina. The verdict was reported as one of the largest verdicts in Pennsylvania that year.

  • In Williams, Duffy + Fulginiti secured a $5,700,000 verdict after a mentally impaired man who had been admitted to a hospital for self-inflicted stab wounds was left alone and leaped from a fourth-floor window.
  • A confidential settlement of $5,000,000 was obtained for a child who suffered severe cerebral palsy due to head trauma that was sustained when the doctors improperly used instruments during delivery.
  • In Mangano, a high school administrator came to Duffy + Fulginiti for help after she slipped on wet flooring glue that had been applied by a flooring contractor. While the defense admitted spreading the glue, they claimed that Mrs. Mangano was not watching where she was walking and should have seen the bright white glue on the floor. Through depositions of defense corporate representatives, it was discovered that while the contractor had prepared a company safety manual, it never distributed it to their employees as it burdensome to do so. Mrs. Mangano claimed severe pain in her leg, which, while it did not appear on MRIs or X-Rays, was identified as RSD/CRPS, a post-traumatic pain syndrome linked to her accident. The defense denied the diagnosis of RSD/CRPS and blamed her pain on a prior accident and/or prior medical conditions. In the end, the firm secured a $5,000,000 settlement for Mr. and Mrs. Mangano to compensate them for Mrs. Mangano’s pain, limitations, wage loss and medical bills.
  • Duffy + Fulginiti recovered $5,000,000 for the estate of a family whose wife/mother died when construction debris fell off the back of a passing truck, killing her instantly. She was a passenger and her husband, who was driving, witnessed the entire horrific event.
  • Duffy + Fulginiti recovered a confidential settlement of $4,625,000 for a young lady who lost three fingers on her non-dominant hand when it was pulled into a machine which the plaintiff contended lacked proper guards and/or warnings. Complicating factors with this matter included the fact that the machine was 25 years old at the time of the incident without evidence of prior incident, and the plaintiff had an unfortunate arrest record both before and after the incident.
  • A confidential settlement of $4,500,000 was obtained from a teaching hospital and attending physician who failed to recognize that an expectant mother had had a recent outbreak of herpes. The doctor permitted the mother to deliver the child vaginally, exposing the child to the herpes virus, which caused severe cerebral palsy. The child was 15 when the mother first approached Duffy + Fulginiti, after another attorney had reviewed the case and turned it down.
  • A confidential settlement in the amount of $4,500,000 was obtained for a school bus driver whose arm got stuck in a wheelchair lift when the lift malfunctioned and failed to stop upon reaching the floor of the school bus.
  • In Smith, Duffy + Fulginiti won a $4,500,000 verdict against Misericordia Hospital, finding the hospital negligent in the testing and treatment of David Smith, ultimately resulting in his death. Mr. Smith was taken by his mother to Misericordia, and ultimately died of an aortic dissection after the hospital staff failed to properly treat or diagnose his condition. The jury returned its verdict after a two-week-long trial. The verdict was reported as one of the largest verdicts in Pennsylvania that year.
  • In Zarzecki, Duffy + Fulginiti represented the family of a cellular infrastructure technician who died after falling 10 stories from a Philadelphia rooftop. The defendants argued that Mr. Zarzecki, the job foreman, was responsible for failing to wear the provided fall protection. Duffy + Fulginiti argued that the focus should be on the poor planning and design of the project on behalf of the building's owners, property managers and general contractor, not the workers trying to get the job done. The firm successfully negotiated this settlement from multiple defendants.
  • A confidential settlement of $4,215,000 was obtained for a man who lost control of a motorcycle purchased just an hour before the accident, resulting in significant injuries. Duffy + Fulginiti was able to obtain a favorable settlement concerning the motorcycle and tire design with product liability theories even though the operator did not have a motorcycle license and had been in prison for 17 years preceding the incident.
  • The firm obtained a settlement in the amount of $4,000,000 in product liability matter involving a medical device, specifically a pain pump used to control post-surgical pain. Duffy + Fulginiti was able to establish that the product was being marketed and used beyond FDA clearance and that it caused the loss of shoulder cartilage to our client, ending his career as a union glazier.
  • In a $4,000,000 confidential settlement,we prevailed on behalf of a client against an international hotel company following a slip and fall in Mexico. Our client slipped on water tracked onto a tile floor from a pool area and struck his head on the person in front of him, breaking his neck and resulting in quadriplegia

    injuries. We were able to establish that the parent hotel, despite its efforts to layer many subsidiaries for insulation, would “push down” policies to its sub-subsidiaries’ hotels, resulting, among other things, in the use of the wrong type of outdoor floor mats. The backing material used on those mats resulted in the mats themselves capturing water, which then caused individuals with dry shoes or feet to track that water onto a previously dry tile surface. Despite defense efforts to remove the case to federal court and then transfer it to Mexico, Duffy + Fulginiti fought successfully to institute and keep the matter in Philadelphia.

  • A confidential settlement of $4,000,000 was secured for a nurse who suffered an elbow injury, resulting in Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS/RSD) as a result of her vehicle being struck by a bus making an improper lane change.
  • A $3,750,000 settlement in Mathis was obtained during the fourth day of trial for a 44-year-old man who was injured in a low speed, low impact crash. There was only $750 in property damage, and no traumatic injury was established on any x-ray, MRI or other study. However, during trial, Duffy + Fulginiti, through expert research and testimony, established that the minor accident triggered a genetic response in Mr. Mathis known as Ankylosing Spondylitis, a condition of which even he was unaware. By the time of trial, Mr. Mathis walked with a cane as this genetic condition had caused a progressive fusing of his spine.
  • A confidential settlement of $3,800,000 was attained for a boy who, 28 hours after birth, developed necrotizing endocolitis (NEC). Failure to properly diagnose the NEC resulted in a decrease in oxygen saturation that ultimately caused an anoxic injury and cerebral palsy to the boy.
  • In Mathis, Duffy + Fulginiti obtained a $3,750,000 settlement during the fourth day of trial for a man who was injured in a low-speed, low-impact crash. There was only $750 in property damage, and there was no traumatic injury established on any x-ray, MRI or other study. However, during trial, Duffy + Fulginiti, through expert research and testimony, established that the minor accident triggered a genetic condition in Mr. Mathis, then 44, known as Ankylosing Spondylitis, a condition of which Mr. Mathis was even unaware. By the time of trial, Mr. Mathis walked with a cane as his genetic condition had caused a progressive fusing of his spine.

  • In Sawyer, Duffy + Fulginiti secured a $3,750,000 settlement for client Susan Sawyer, a former security guard at a port in Delaware County, who was the victim of devastating injuries when a tractor trailer ran over her leg and foot.
  • In a confidential settlement, Duffy + Fulginiti recovered $3,700,000 for a construction worker who was injured in a motor vehicle accident on a job site. His vehicle flipped over, causing fractures to his pelvis and requiring surgeries. The defense contended that the plaintiff was responsible for his incident and was driving too fast for the conditions of the project.
  • Duffy + Fulginiti secured a $3,500,000 settlement in a case where a 39-year-old man in good health was brought to the emergency room with complaints of a headache so severe that he could not stand or function at work. After about an hour in the ER, he felt better. Without ordering a CAT scan or neurological consultation, the ER discharged the man. Weeks later, he collapsed on the street and was rushed to the hospital, where imaging showed a brain lesion responsible for his headaches had ruptured, leaving him with irreversible and permanent brain damage. He never fully regained consciousness and died 3 years later.
  • In Schramm, Duffy + Fulginiti negotiated a $3,400,000 settlement for a client who suffered massive leg injuries when the tractor-trailer he was driving was hit by another trucker's rig.
  • Our client, a young mother in her 30's, had sought care from several successive doctors to correct lower back and related abdominal pain. After following the advice of the doctors and enduring multiple “corrective” surgeries, she received no relief whatsoever. Rib cage-related neuralgia, costochondritis, musculoskeletal pain, failed back surgery syndrome, thoracotomy syndrome, and graft site pain left her unable to return to her full-time responsibilities as a nursing supervisor. Duffy + Fulginiti secured In a confidential $3,000,000 settlement to offset her future wage losses and medical care.
  • In Gymnastics Plus, a $3,000,000 verdict was obtained for a New Jersey recreational facility that was destroyed in a fire. Duffy + Fulginiti argued that the fire would not have occurred had the local utility company maintained adequate surge protection at its transformers. The utility blamed the fire on an electrician doing work on the transformer and fought the case unsuccessfully through appellate courts and the Supreme Court of New Jersey.
  • In a confidential settlement, Duffy + Fulginiti recovered $3,000,000 for a 60-year-old physician who twisted her ankle due to a sidewalk that measured to be a one-half inch offset from the surrounding sidewalk. This condition caused our client to break her ankle, resulting in surgery and post-traumatic arthritis.
  • Duffy + Fulginiti recovered $2,900,000 for a minor who was injured when an erratic commercial van struck her, fracturing bones in both of her lower extremities.
  • Duffy + Fulginiti obtained a $2,900,000 settlement on behalf of an undocumented construction worker who was injured when the scaffold he was working on tipped over.
  • In Nalls, Duffy + Fulginiti secured a $2,650,000 settlement for a young, off-duty police officer who was forced off the job due to injuries he received when the driver of an automobile hit him on his motorcycle, causing injuries to his face, arm, and leg.
  • In Ward, Duffy + Fulginiti obtained a $2,500,000 settlement for a woman who, while working at her job as a bank teller supervisor, sustained injuries and permanent nerve damage when a deliveryman knocked a heavy box off of a hand truck onto her foot and leg.
  • In Baird, Duffy + Fulginiti secured a $2,350,000 settlement for a union glazier who became permanently disabled when he had to dive to get out of the way of a crate of glass being unloaded by a crane.
  • A confidential settlement of $2,250,000 was reached for a baby with cerebral palsy who was delivered by a midwife and nurses who failed to recognize the significance of deceleration and drop in the baseline on the fetal monitor.
  • In one confidential matter, Duffy + Fulginiti represented a young schoolteacher who suffered a traumatic brain injury after being struck in a multi-car pileup following a flash freeze involving multiple vehicles. Defendants denied wrongdoing since many vehicles were involved, and claimed that the plaintiff’s injury actually came from an accident some weeks prior. The firm’s accident reconstruction experts established that the defendant drivers were at fault, since the plaintiff’s car was positioned on the side of the road, and, had the defendants been operating at safe speeds for the weather conditions, they would have had time to react. This matter settled for $2,200,000.
  • In Kelley, Duffy + Fulginiti obtained a $1,876,000 verdict in the United States District Court of New Jersey for a 58-year-old woman involved in a motor vehicle accident while traveling between meetings for work. The defense argued that she suffered nothing more than a temporary soft tissue injury on top of a prior history of back and neck pain that had been documented for over 10 years prior to the accident. While the client did not have surgery or broken bones, Duffy + Fulginiti impressed upon the jury that her life had changed significantly following the accident, including an inability to return to her prior position (although she returned to light duty work) and restricted her ability to be involved in the lives of her grandchildren.
  • In Moyer, a a Philadelphia jury awarded $850,000 to a client who had been struck and knocked down by a delivery truck as the truck was pulling out from the loading dock. The defense argued that the driver had looked in his mirrors within seconds before the incident, and Ms. Moyer was not present. Duffy + Fulginiti successfully argued that whether Ms. Moyer was present for merely seconds or longer is immaterial as one should not move a truck without confirming it was safe to do so. The defense also argued that Ms. Moyer sustained nothing more than soft-tissue injuries.

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