Six Million Dollar Settlements Recognized by Virginia Lawyers Weekly

In the January 26, 2009 issue, Virginia Lawyers Weekly recognized the top 36 Million Dollar Settlements of 2009. Among those 36 were 5 settlements from Allen & Allen attorneys.

#3 (tie) $5 Million

Attorney P. Christopher Guedri

Severe Burns from a Traffic Crash

Summary: Plaintiff’s car was one of at least four vehicles hit by a tractor-trailer that went out of control near the Chamberlayne Avenue exit of Interstate 95. The tractor’s fuel tank separated, exploded and set plaintiff’s vehicle on fire.

A retired 49-year-old veteran, plantiff suffered burns over 40 percent of his body and had to undergo extensive skin grafts and physical and occupational therapy. His medical bills totaled more than $670,000 and he has permanent scarring and faces additional surgery. The case settled after mediation.

© Copyright 2009, by Virginia Lawyers Media, all rights reserved. Source:

#9 (tie) $2.5 Million

Attorneys P. Christopher Guedri and Douglas A. Barry

Kurek v. East Coast Truck Lines

Wrongful Death, Traffic Accident

The 74-year-old plaintiff was crushed against his pickup truck by a tractor-trailer at a truck-scale bypass lane in Prince William County. Plaintiff had pulled the truck, which was towing a trailer, onto the asphalt shoulder next to the lane and stepped out of the vehicle just before the tractor-trailer approached.

© Copyright 2009, by Virginia Lawyers Media, all rights reserved. Source:

#12 $2.4 Million

Attorneys Paul D. Hux, P. Christopher Guedri and Douglas A. Barry

Allen v. City of Petersburg

Wrongful Death, Traffic Accident Involving a Police Car

A couple in their 70s were killed when a police cruiser driving 65 mph in a 35 mph zone without lights or siren struck their vehicle at an intersection in Petersburg. The officer testified that he was speeding to the aid of another officer who had been dispatched to an apartment complex with a high crime rate.

Before the case was settled through mediation, the trial judge had ruled that the policeman and the city were protected by the doctrine of sovereign immunity, so that the decedents’ estate would have to prove gross negligence to prevail at trial.

© Copyright 2009, by Virginia Lawyers Media, all rights reserved. Source:

#25 $1.35 Million

Attorney George E. Allen, III

Fractured Hip in a Traffic Accident Involving a School Bus

A school bus driven by a garage employee turned left in front of the 21-year-old plaintiff’s small car. Plaintiff suffered a comminuted, displaced fracture of the right hip, a fracture dislocation of the left great toe and a deep laceration of his forehead.

Plaintiff developed traumatic arthritis and aseptic necrosis of the hip joint and probably will have to have several hip replacement surgeries over his lifespan. He will have a 37 percent impairment of his right leg and will be restricted to sedentary employment.

He had $59,552 in medical expenses and likely will incur an additional $158,000 in medical costs in the future.

© Copyright 2009, by Virginia Lawyers Media, all rights reserved. Source:

Also recognized was a top Personal Injury Settlement of 2007:

$1.45 Million

Attorney Douglas A. Barry

Wrongful Death, Traffic Crash

Plaintiff’s decedent, Ashley Myers, an 18-year-old high school senior, was killed instantly when the vehicle in which she was a passenger was rear-ended by a tractor trailer on Interstate 66 in the early morning hours of Jan. 28, 2007. Because Ms. Myers and the driver were both killed in the accident, as was the operator of an automobile that had apparently stopped immediately behind them, not all the circumstances surrounding the accident were clear.

In response to questions asked by an investigating state trooper, the defendant operator of the tractor trailer, which was owned by M. Pittman Enterprises LC, indicated he was not aware he had hit two vehicles. Evidence at the accident site suggested the vehicle in which Ms. Myers was a passenger might have stopped in the right travel lane of Interstate 66 because of mechanical problems. The driver of the automobile behind them might have stopped to render assistance. There was evidence that the rear tail lights, including hazard lights, had been activated and were working on the two automobiles at the time of the collision.

There was $5,000,000 total liability insurance coverage on the tractor trailer. There were no claims of economic damages, beyond funeral bills, for plaintiff’s decedent and her deceased teenage driver. However, the driver of the second automobile involved in the accident left a widow who had significant economic damages in the form of a lost income claim. The plaintiffs first participated in a mediation at which they agreed how the $5,000,000 in coverage would be divided among them in the event the defendants and their insurance carrier offered the entire amount of the coverage or a jury rendered jury verdicts in the amount of the coverage.

Subsequently, $4,850,000 in coverage was offered and accepted, and the case settled in accordance with the split of proceeds previously decided upon during mediation.

© Copyright 2009, by Virginia Lawyers Media, all rights reserved. By Virginia Lawyers Weekly Staff , January 28, 2008. Source: