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Mark Mandell Wins $25 Million Negligence Verdict

May 13, 2015

Trial attorney Mark Mandell obtained the highest negligence verdict in the history of Rhode Island on April 29 with his co-counsel Yvette Boisclair and Zachary Mandell. The Case: The two Plaintiffs (husband and wife) sued the Rhode Island Hospital. Due to hospital employee negligence, the husband suffered a severe brain injury that caused permanent disabilities in his motor ability and movement, vision, speech, swallowing, and cognition. The $25,590,019.63 verdict accounted for pain and suffering, past medical expenses, expected future medical expenses, loss of enjoyment of life, and loss of consortium. In addition, the Judge directed interest payments of $5.9 million, bringing the total award to $31.5 million. The Story: On August 28, 2009, the Rhode Island Hospital admitted the husband for injuries from a fall. In the next forty hours, hospital employees negligently diagnosed him and failed to offer ordinary care or follow orders. He went from being able to walk and function normally to being unable to speak, take fluid or food by mouth, walk, or respond. At the end of the forty hours, the client’s brain herniated on his brain stem, and the increased intracranial pressure, brain swelling, and herniation caused permanent and irreversible damage to his brain—preventable .. Read more

Ten Wrong Reasons for Not Doing Focus Groups

April 22, 2015

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Excerpt From Advanced Depositions Strategy & Practice by Phillip Miller and Paul Scoptur 1. I have all the proof I need. This statement is an example of ego gone wild. As we have said, there is lawyer proof and there is jury proof. The proof that the jury needs to find in your favor is often very different than what we as lawyers think is important. Without knowing the jury proof, you will miss critical evidence and testimony in your case. When there is something the jurors want to know—part of their proof—and it is missing from the evidence, they will make up whatever facts they need for the story to make sense to them. This is called the filling defect. You will not like the answers the jury fills in for you at trial. The only way to learn what your jury proof is, is to talk to a focus group. Or two. Or three. 2. Focus groups are too expensive. It is not uncommon to hear lawyers say they cannot afford to do focus groups. They may spend tens of thousands of dollars on experts, animations, reconstructions, document or product analysis, and exhibits, but they will not spend .. Read more