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May 15, 2014

Partner Harold Stevens Earns Defense Verdict For Local Restaurant

Partner, Harold S. Stevens, and associate, Anthony Chiarello, recently earned a jury verdict in favor of the defendant, a local restaurant, during a 4-day premises liability trial in West Palm Beach. The plaintiff, 78, was injured when the restaurant’s door clipped her heel as she exited.

The plaintiff was taken directly to the emergency room from the restaurant by ambulance where she required stiches to close her wound. The plaintiff then claimed that a subsequent infection that developed on her leg was caused by the restaurant’s defective door when it knocked her to the ground after hitting her. The plaintiff was looking to recover over $250,000.00, in medical charges.

Mr. Stevens and Mr. Chiarello were able to convincingly show the jury that, in fact, a customer who was supposed to hold the door for the plaintiff as she exited, prematurely released the door, and the restaurant, therefore, was not negligent. By earning a defense verdict, the defendant beat a proposal for settlement it previously served on the plaintiff, entitling the defendant to recover its attorneys’ fees and costs from the plaintiff. The plaintiff’s motion for new trial was recently denied by the judge, ripening the defendant’s pending motion for fees and costs.