Sizeable Settlement Obtained for Rock Hill Teen Who Lost an Arm on the Job

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A significant, confidential settlement was reached for a young Joye Law Firm client who suffered life-altering injuries at his after-school job. Joye lawyers were able to secured compensation through workers compensation and a third-party liability claim against the manufacture of the device that maimed Darius.

The Joye Law Firm successfully reached a sizeable settlement on behalf of client Darius Johnson against an industrial business and an equipment manufacturer. Per the settlement agreement, many details regarding this case must be kept confidential.

Darius, who was 16 years old at the time he was injured, was attending high school, and working part-time to help support his family. The company for which he worked provided cleaning services for industrial businesses.

Darius was performing his regular cleaning duties at an industrial business when he came into contact with a piece of machinery located on the premises resulting in a catastrophic injury to Darius. Darius’ left arm was ripped off two or three inches below his shoulder.

Darius suffered tremendous physical pain as a result of his disfiguring injury. He also incurred several hundred thousands of dollars in medical bills. Darius and his mother were also concerned about the expense of occupational therapy that would be needed to support Darius in learning to adjust to his disability and the costs associated with vocational training that would be essential in assisting Darius in choosing a viable career that could accommodate his life-changing disability.

Sally Johnson, Darius’ mother, turned to Joye Law Firm for help. Attorney Ken Harrell, the head of the law firm’s workers’ compensation section, was able to procure a workers’ compensation settlement for the loss of Darius’ arm against Darius’ employer, without having to move forward with a hearing. Of significance, Mr. Harrell was able to convince the workers’ compensation insurance company that Darius’ compensation rate should be based on his future earning capacity (rather than his limited earnings as a student working part-time.) This increased the final settlement nearly 10-fold. Mr. Harrell also persuaded the workers’ compensation carrier to completely drop its subrogation claim against the negligence case settlement.

While the workers’ compensation case was pending, Joye Law Firm’s product liability and litigation section filed a personal injury action on behalf of Darius against the industrial business where he was working on the day that he was injured, and a product liability action against the manufacturer of the equipment on which he was injured. As to the industrial business, Joye Law Firm alleged that it maintained an unsafe work environment. As to the manufacturer of the equipment, the firm alleged that the equipment was defective.

As it always does, Joye Law Firm retained numerous respected experts to assist in the preparation of this case in the event of the need for a trial.

These experts included an engineer to testify how the manufacturing equipment could have been built more safely to prevent the kind of injury that Darius sustained, a life care planner to testify regarding Darius’ future health care and medical needs as a result of his injury including prosthetic devices, a vocational rehabilitation expert to testify about Darius’ future employment possibilities given his disability, and an economist to testify regarding Darius’ future economic losses as a result of Darius’ limited employment potential given his disability.

The Johnson family was thrilled with Joye Law Firm’s representation and the expediency at which the firm was able to procure a settlement. Attorney Mark C. Joye, , who handled the product liability case against the industrial employer and the equipment manufacturer, stated, “This is a perfect example of both Joye Law Firm’s workers’ compensation and product liability sections working together to achieve maximum results for a client. We are delighted that we were able to secure such a successful financial settlement for Darius, which will enable him to pay for the resources that he needs to learn employment skills that will afford him the opportunity to maximize his employment opportunities despite his disability. Despite the finger-pointing between the defendants, we are glad that we were able to make them accountable for their respective roles in contributing to Darius’ injury.”

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