A federal appeals court opted to reverse a ruling in a personal injury case against Berkshire Hathaway Inc. The incident in question took place on December 3, 2011. On that day, Jose Montesdeoca who worked as a Samuel Feldman Lumber Co. driver was in the process of delivering a load of sheetrock to a construction project when he was injured. At the time, the claim was passed on to U.S. Underwriters Insurance Co a company that’s a part of the Berkshire Hathaway holdings, and who covered the company handling the construction site. The policy that the construction company carried hand an exclusion that covered “all employees, volunteer workers, temporary workers, casual laborers, contractors and subcontractors.”
In addition to filing for workers compensation following his injury, Montesdeoca also files a personal injury claim. U.S. Underwriters Insurance Co decided they didn’t want to cover it, claiming a bodily injury exclusion. In March, 2014 the case was heard by the Brooklyn U.S. District Court. When the hearing was over, the court sided with U.S. Underwriters Insurance Co.
Montedeoca and his personal injury lawyer refused to be discouraged and took their case to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit in New York. This time the case was heard by a 3-judge panel who made the unanimous decision to overturn the original court verdict. When the judgement was made, the ruling stated, “the words ‘contractor’ and “subcontractor’ are not defined in the policy at issue. As a result, we are unable to determine whether Feldman Lumber, the employer of the injured party, is a ‘contractor’ or ‘subcontractor’ within the meaning of the exclusion.”
Jose Montesdeoca’s case highlights why it’s so important to find a personal injury attorney who is willing to do whatever it takes, including devoting several years’ worth of time and going all the way to the Court of Appeals to make sure their client is cared for.
Personal injury cases are quite common. It’s
If you’ve been injured, you shouldn’t assume that the insurance company will honor the policy. Insurance companies are in the business of making money, which means that they’ll put a great deal of effort into looking for loopholes that allow them to get out of paying on a claim. It’s the job of a personal injury lawyer to keep the insurance companies honest. In many cases, just learning that someone has enlisted the help of a good personal injury attorney is all the incentive the company needs to pay for the individual’s medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Approximately 90-95% of all personal injury cases are settled before the case goes to court.
If you feel you have grounds for a personal injury case, don’t spend a great deal of time fighting with the insurance company. Seeking out a lawyer who specializes in cases like yours is your best course of action. We suggest John Bales Attorneys legal team. They’ll look at the details surrounding your case and offer you a great deal of advise regarding your legal options.