$19.3 Million Awarded in New Jersey Personal Injury Case
A Vernon, NJ couple was awarded $19.3 million for personal injuries the husband suffered to his spine and other areas in a car accident four years ago. The injury happened when a pickup truck rear-ended his motorcycle. The $19.3 million award, announced on May 22, 2014, is the largest amount ever awarded by a Sussex County jury.
In coming to its decision, the jury not only considered the victim, Steven Vissagio, but also took into account the needs of his wife, who was not present during the motorcycle accident. The verdict may still be appealed, but GEICO Insurance Co. (the other driver’s insurance) must pay $15.5 million to Vissagio and $3.8 million to his wife.
Vissagio was considered the backbone of his family and was the father of eight children, five of whom were adopted. For several months after the accident, he was not able to return to his business, AB&S Home Improvements, according to Vissagio’s attorney. He will likely require spinal surgery at some point in the future on top of the shoulder surgery he already had. According to his attorney, Vissagio suffered permanent damage to his spine, lower back and neck.
One interesting note in this case is that the insurance company did not want to settle the case for $250,000, which the couple was originally willing to take. Instead, GEICO elected to take a chance, which turned out to be a poor choice. Just goes to show that going for a settlement isn’t always the best move.
The $19.3 million shattered the previous personal injury lawsuit award record in Sussex County of $1.4 million. This could mark a new beginning for the county which had become known for its conservative jury awards.
The attorneys at The Wilton Law Firm have more than 20 years of experience and have won millions of dollars fighting for NJ personal injury victims. If you have been injured, contact us today for a free consultation. Call 732-333-3168.