Charleston workers' compensation lawyer

Attorney Catherine Meehan Settles $3.8 Million Workers’ Compensation Case

Attorneys Catie Meehan and David Perlman of Steinberg Law Firm recently settled a workers’ compensation case, for $3.8 million. The case involved a man who was severely injured in an accident after smoking marijuana.

The man was driving a truck owned by his employer sometime in the early morning hours when he was involved in a single vehicle accident. Meehan described the accident as catastrophic. Emergency services had difficulty extricating the man from his truck after the accident; it took nearly three hours to get him out of the wreckage.

The man was fortunate to survive. He sustained a traumatic brain injury and critical injuries to his spinal cord, kidney, lung, leg, ankle, foot, arm, hand, neck, back, gastrointestinal system, bladder and circulatory system. He spent two months in a hospital, half of that time in the intensive care unit. He underwent multiple surgeries.

Toxicology test results showed that the man had used marijuana prior to the accident and his employer claimed that this caused him to lose control of the truck. His workers’ compensation claim was initially denied.

“They put up a very strong intoxication defense, which we were able to overcome,” Meehan said. “Our argument was that even though marijuana was found in his blood, they did not have the evidence that marijuana was the proximate cause of the wreck. The state trooper didn’t find any evidence of marijuana or paraphernalia or anything of that nature.”

It was very complicated to put a value on not only the man’s immediate pain, suffering and expenses but especially his projected future medical costs and lost earning potential. He now requires home care from a caretaker.

Meehan and Perlman successfully negotiated on behalf of their client so that he would not need to struggle financially, and instead could focus on healing after his life changing accident. They ultimately got him a $3.8 million settlement.

“As a young attorney, I was very proud to achieve this settlement for my client with the help of my partner,” said Meehan.

Updated on August 17, 2020

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