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Justin Blitz Receives $4.2 Million Verdict in 3 Week Bronx Trial

Justin Blitz Receives $4.2 Million Verdict in 3 Week Bronx Trial

Following a six-day trial held in what an attorney described as an eerily quiet Bronx courthouse, a jury found for an on-duty Co-Op City peace officer who was riding a three-wheeled scooter when he says he was hit by a passing Metropolitan Transportation Authority bus.

The jury of four women and two men found the MTA 100% at fault for plaintiff Burt Burney’s injuries after a three-day liability trial, attorney Justin Blitz told the Law Journal. He said half of the jurors were in their 20s and the other half were in their 40s.

The case moved immediately to a damages trial and, after another three days, the jury awarded Burney $2.5 million for future pain and suffering, $1 million for past pain and suffering, $500,000 for future medical expenses and $200,000 for past medical expenses.

Blitz said the in-person trial, for which jury selection began on Oct. 13, was his first since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The jurors of the Bronx, they still use their logic, they still use their reason, they still listen to their evidence,” Blitz said. “Perhaps there’s a bit more empathy now that we’ve all been through such tragedy.”

Gregory Nelson of Morris Duffy Alonso & Faley appeared for the MTA, which declined to comment.

The trial for Burney’s case was held before Judge Adrian Armstrong, a New York Court of Claims judge sitting in the civil term for Bronx Supreme Court.

In Armstrong’s courtroom, jurors were masked and sat socially distant in the gallery. Throughout the courthouse at 859 Grand Concourse in the South Bronx, Blitz said, there was a stillness that wasn’t there during business hours in pre-pandemic times, when there could be as many as 20 trials being held simultaneously.

“There was … quite an eeriness to the courthouse. I’m used to all sorts of craziness, with lawyers running around,” he said. “I’ll be frank, by the end of the week there was a sense of calmness that I had about it that I started to rather enjoy.”

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Significant Settlement for Victim of Medical Malpractice Cosmetic Surgical Procedure

Significant Settlement for Victim of Medical Malpractice Cosmetic Surgical Procedure

When Justin Blitz was asked by a former law school classmate, and fellow attorney, to handle her medical malpractice case, everyone knew from the outset it was going to be an uphill battle. The potential defendant a well-known physician. Also, it was going to be difficult to prove that he committed medical malpractice. This is because the potential malpractice occurred while performing a non-emergent cosmetic procedure on our client.

Blitz investigated the case thoroughly. Despite many hurdles, Justin proceeded with the case. The case was vigorously litigated against the physician and his large team of attorneys. This is not uncommon in order to obtain a settlement for cosmetic medical malpractice.

The litigation included a marathon, multiple-day deposition of the defendant doctor. During the deposition of the defendant, Mr. Blitz relentlessly questioned the defendant physician. Ultimately, Mr. Blitz was able to get the physician to admit, under oath, that his negligence caused our client’s injury, and she was a victim of cosmetic medical malpractice.

Shortly after the deposition concluded the pandemic began. Despite the pandemic bringing many cases grinding to a halt, the parties agreed to hold a virtual mediation in an attempt to resolve the case and discuss a settlement.

After a full day of intense negotiations during the virtual mediation in an attempt to come to a settlement, Mr. Blitz and the attorneys and insurance company for the defendant physician were able to come to terms and settle the case for a significant amount. Although the terms of the settlement for cosmetic medical malpractice cannot be disclosed due to a confidentiality agreement, it is fair to say that our client was extremely pleased with the result.

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$298,000 for Woman Who Fell on Ice Created by Negligent Neighbor

$298,000 for Woman Who Fell on Ice Created by Negligent Neighbor

On December 18, 2019, our client, an executive at Sony Music, slipped and fell on ice. She fell as she was walking on the sidewalk next to her neighbor’s house in Queens, New York. The ice had formed as a result of water that her neighbor was negligently pumping out of his basement. The neighbor had been using a sump pump to remove the water from his basement onto his driveway. The water then flowed onto the sidewalk. The water froze overnight and turned the sidewalk into a sheet of ice.

When she slipped on the ice, our client fell to the ground, landing on her knee. An ambulance transported her to a nearby emergency room, where an x-ray confirmed that she had ruptured her patella (kneecap) and would require surgery.

The surgery consisted of an open reduction and internal fixation of our client’s comminuted patellar fracture. The surgery included the insertion of various metal plates and screws into our client’s knee.

Shortly after the lawsuit was commenced, Justin Blitz, Esq. was able to procure a settlement for $298,000 from the neighbor’s insurance company. The settlement provided compensation and justice for our client’s injury.

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Blitz Law Group Settles Case for Miracle Survivors of Helicopter Crash

Blitz Law Group Settles Case for Miracle Survivors of Helicopter Crash

In what was described by local media outlets as a “miracle,” two clients were passengers on a helicopter that crashed to the ground and lived to tell about it. On December 14, 2019, our clients (both of whom are college students from Brooklyn) were vacationing in San Antonio, Texas, and decided to take a scenic helicopter tour of the city. Within minutes of takeoff, the helicopter’s engine failed, causing it to descend rapidly. The helicopter struck multiple power lines before crashing onto a busy roadway.

After the helicopter crashed to the ground, our clients were transported by ambulances from the scene to a local emergency room.

As a result of the crash, one of our clients sustained injuries to her hand, neck and back. X-rays confirmed fractures to her fifth metacarpal head compatible with a “boxer’s fracture” and MRIs confirmed several disc bulges of her cervical and lumbar spines. Our other client also injured his back as a result of the crash, sustaining a disc herniation in his lumbar spine that required a series of epidural steroid injections.

Stephanie Mastrocola, Esq. was able to procure confidential settlements for our clients with the insurance company for the helicopter tour company prior to commencing a lawsuit, providing both of our clients with just compensation for their injuries.

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$1.4 million settlement for man whose foot was crushed by elevator door

$1.4 million settlement for man whose foot was crushed by elevator door

Many times, our colleagues ask us to assist them with their cases, either for the entire litigation or just for trial or settlement purposes. This was the case recently when our firm acted as “co-counsel” to another law firm and were able to successfully resolve our client’s case which involved a defective elevator door that closed on him causing severe injuries.

In this case, our client was working for a moving company when he was injured by a freight elevator that suddenly and unexpectedly closed on him, trapping his right foot in the elevator doors.

As a result of the incident, our client injured various parts of his body, and underwent arthroscopic surgery to his knee to repair a torn meniscus. He also required an extensive surgery to his ankle.

The ankle surgery was called a “Brostrom lateral ligament reconstruction” which is a type of surgery where the damaged ligaments are repaired utilizing graft augmentation, and the ligaments are shortened and repaired with suture fixation.

After many years of litigation, our firm was asked by a colleague to be co-counsel on behalf of the plaintiff as the case was proceeding to trial. While the Coronavirus pandemic was in its beginning stages, the parties agreed to attempt to resolve the case with a virtual mediation.

After many hours conducting a mediation via a Zoom call, Justin Blitz, along with our co-counsel, the defense attorney, and representatives of the defendants’ insurance companies were able to come to terms and settle the case in the amount of $1,400,000.

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Justin Blitz Verdict Top 2020 Verdict

Justin Blitz Verdict Top 2020 Verdict

We are proud that Justin Blitz’s 2019 jury verdict for $3,000,000 was recently a 2020 Featured Verdict of Verdict Search.

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$250,000 for Rear-end Car Crash

$250,000 for Rear-end Car Crash

Our client was driving to her job as a supervisor at the United States Postal Service when her vehicle was in a car crash as she was rear-ended by a car on the Long Island Expressway.  The driver of the car that struck our client’s vehicle told the police that he was unable to slow down in time to avoid the collision.  Our client was taken from the scene by ambulance to North Shore University Hospital with severe neck pain. MRIs showed herniations to her neck at the C5-C6 disc level. Despite undergoing multiple epidural steroid injections, our client did not have any relief from her pain. As such, she underwent surgery to her neck which consisted of an anterior cervical discectomy and fusion at the C5-C6 level. During the surgery, a plate and pins were inserted, and a bone graft was performed using bone harvested from another part of her body.

Blitz Law Group brought a lawsuit against the driver and owner of the car that rear-ended our client’s vehicle.  Following the completion of depositions, Stephanie Mastrocola, Esq. procured the total amount of insurance coverage available and settled our client’s case for $250,000, providing our client with much-deserved compensation.

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$750,000 for Bus Matron Injured on School Bus

$750,000 for Bus Matron Injured on School Bus

On January 4, 2017, our client, a 56-year-old woman, was working as a bus matron and was a passenger on a school bus that was parked in front of a public school in Queens when a large truck backed up into the bus.  The truck was owned by a milk company and was filled with milk at the time of the crash.

As a result of the crash, our client suffered life-changing injuries to her back and shoulder which required her to undergo multiple surgeries, including a shoulder surgery and a lumbar spinal fusion surgery.  Blitz Law Group brought a lawsuit on behalf of our client against the driver and owner of the milk truck that caused the crash.  After years of litigation, the case was scheduled for trial and then the Coronavirus pandemic began.

Despite the crisis, Stephanie Mastrocola, Esq. and Justin Blitz, Esq. arranged a virtual mediation, at which time they settled the case for $750,000.

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Blitz Law Group Obtains $450,000 for Church Pastor Involved in Multi-car Pile Up on the George Washington Bridge

Blitz Law Group Obtains $450,000 for Church Pastor Involved in Multi-car Pile Up on the George Washington Bridge

On June 22, 2015, our 33-year-old client was driving his SUV on the lower level of the George Washington Bridge on his way to church when he was involved in a four-car crash. The crash occurred while our client, who was wearing his seat belt, was stopped in traffic in the middle lane of the bridge.  While stopped, our client’s car was struck in the rear by another vehicle, which had by struck in the rear by the vehicle behind it at a high rate of speed.  The impact caused our client’s car to smash into the car in front of him, causing significant damage to all 4 of the cars involved.

As a result, our client severely injured his lumbar spine, which required him to undergo a spinal fusion surgery.

The surgery consisted of an anterior “retroperitoneal radical discectomy” at our client’s L4-L5 disc level with placement of a perimeter cage, infuse bone graft and allograft with fusion, and placement of pyramid plate and screws.

Blitz Law Group initially brought a lawsuit on our client’s behalf in the Supreme Court, Bronx County but as a result of a motion made by the defendant’s attorneys, the case was transferred to Supreme Court, Richmond County (Staten Island).

After extensive litigation, and shortly before jury selection was set to begin Justin Blitz, Esq. settled the case for $450,000.

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$275,000 Settlement for Woman Who Tripped and Fell on a Broken Sidewalk

$275,000 Settlement for Woman Who Tripped and Fell on a Broken Sidewalk

In February 2018, our client, an elderly woman, was on her way to the grocery store in the Sheepshead Bay section of Brooklyn, when she tripped and fell on a broken sidewalk adjoining a synagogue in the neighborhood where she lived.  After falling, our client was taken by ambulance to the Emergency Room at Maimonides Medical Center where she was admitted and eventually underwent surgery to repair her fractured hip.

Blitz Law Group discovered that the synagogue knew that the sidewalk was broken and dangerous well before our client’s accident but decided that fixing it was too expensive and chose to let it remain in a state of disrepair.  

Blitz Law Group commenced a lawsuit on behalf of our client and during we settled the case for $275,000, providing our client with just compensation for her significant injuries.