Celebrities…they’re just like us! Accidents happen, and they do not discriminate. Below, read up on five famous people who were injured through no fault of their own, and had the smarts to call a personal injury attorney.
In 2014, Tracy Morgan was traveling in a limo van when a Walmart truck slammed into the back of the vehicle. At the time, he was traveling with his assistant Jeffrey Millea, his wife Krista Millea, and comedians Ardie Fuqua and James McNair. McNair was killed in the accident, and the remaining passengers sustained serious injuries. Morgan sustained a traumatic brain injury (TBI) as well as broken ribs and a broken leg.
It was discovered that the driver fell asleep behind the wheel after a straight 24 hours of driving. This violates federal guidelines for trucking companies, who are required to regulate driving hours in order to reduce fatigue-related accidents. It is rumored that the ensuing lawsuit ended in a $90 million dollar settlement.
The death of this Glee star shocked the nation, as her body had disappeared in the waters of Lake Piru in California, leaving her four year-old son alone on the boat. Though not filed by the actress herself, a wrongful death lawsuit has been filed on behalf of her son, and it points fingers at Ventura County, United Water Conservation District and Ventura County’s Parks and Recreation Management.
An investigation revealed that the pontoon she rented did not comply with U.S. Coast Guard safety standards. It further noted that the lake did not post any safety warnings, and that the boat “was not equipped with a safely accessible ladder, adequate rope, an anchor, a radio or any security mechanisms to prevent swimmers from being separated from their boats,” the court documents say. “Disturbingly, later inspection revealed that the boat was not even equipped with any flotation or lifesaving devices, in direct violation of California law.” This case is still open.
In 2009, Olympic gold medalist Michael Phelps was involved in a motor vehicle collision, crashing into a woman at an intersection. After hiring a personal injury attorney, it was soon discovered through video footage and eyewitness accounts that the woman had run a red light, causing the accident in the first place. The evidence ensured that Phelps was free from liability, and maintained a good driving record.
In 1990, the pop star, her family and a few crew members were sitting in a tour bus at a traffic stop in the snowy Pocono mountains. They were rear-ended by a large truck that devastated the tour bus and injured everyone on board. Estefan’s back was broken, and she had to cancel her tour to undergo spinal surgery, where two steel rods were placed into her back. It took her a year to recover. Her husband sustained head injuries and their son broke his collarbone.
A personal injury attorney was hired to help the injured party. The attorneys sued the truck driver as well as his employer, the owner of the truck, and four affiliated businesses related to the goods transported on the truck. Estefan and her family, as well as the crew members, received an $8.5 million settlement from the seven defendants.
In 2009, the former Poison frontman and occasional TV personality filed a lawsuit against CBS and the Tony Awards, after being hit on the head with a descending backdrop. The ensuing injury was a broken nose, a cut that required stitches, and he claims that the incident later contributed to a brain hemorrhage.
The lawsuit alleged that producers were asked to provide Michaels with instructions about where he should stand during his performance. The producers allegedly claimed he had “missed his mark.” After hiring a personal injury attorney, his case was successfully settled out of court, though the settlement amount remains confidential.