A New York personal injury firm secured a $7.75 million settlement in favor of plaintiffs Thomas and Linda Taylor. They were involved in a life-changing snowmobile accident in Saranac Lake, NY.
The plaintiffs were represented by Ben Rubinowitz and Richard Steigman of Gair, Gair, Conason, Rubinowitz, Bloom, Hershenhorn, Steigman & Mackauf.
Thomas Taylor was killed in the accident, while his wife Linda sustained a number of serious injuries, including a number of fractures as well as a traumatic brain injury.
On the date of the incident, the plaintiffs were guests at a luxury 5-star resort hotel located in Franklin County, New York. The resort had scheduled a snowmobile tour for the plaintiffs as well as 4 other hotel guests. However none of the participants had ever used a snowmobile before.
At the outset of the tour, the guests were given a short (less than 20 minute) lesson on the operation of their snowmobile by the tour’s guide; who was a member of a third party company contracted by the resort to conduct the snowmobile tours for its guests.
The first hour of the tour, during which the guests followed behind the tour guide on their own individual snowmobiles, occurred without incident. However, at some point one of the guest’s snowmobiles experienced mechanical problems.
It was at this point that the tour guide decided to return to the tour’s origin with his group.
According to the plaintiffs, the tour guide was in a rush to return to the hotel. He thus failed to protect the members of his group from the unfamiliar terrain over which they were travelling.
Eventually, the group came upon a road crossing which, according to the plaintiffs, they were not aware of. The plaintiffs proceeded through the crossing, without stopping for the stop sign, and were struck by a van.
The plaintiffs called a number of experts to support their case. Namely the orthopedic surgeon who treated Linda Taylor after the accident; as well as a leading neuropsychologist to opine on Mrs. Taylor’s traumatic brain injury.
Crucially, the plaintiff’s cross-examination of the defense’s IME physician revealed a number of questionable tendencies in his previous litigation history. Such as his repeated work for defense firms and the significant proportion of his annual income which was derived from his litigation work.