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Sewell & Neal PLLC welcomes Robert J. Rosing and Zachary C. Richards

Sewell & Neal PLLC is pleased to announce that Robert J. Rosing and Zachary C. Richards have joined the firm.

Mr. Rosing has extensive experience in all aspects of civil litigation but has specific experience in defending dram shop cases and suits involving alleged negligent security.  He is a 1992 graduate of the University of Kentucky and a 1995 graduate of its law school.  Mr. Rosing has successfully tried over 50 cases in his career.

Mr. Richards joined the firm in March 2017 after working in insurance defense for the last 3 years.  Mr. Richards is a 2010 graduate of the University of Tennessee where he studied Business Administration and a 2013 graduate of the University of Louisville.

Sewell & Neal PLLC welcomes Michael D. DeFilippo

Sewell & Neal PLLC is pleased to announce that Michael D. DeFilippo is now affiliated with the firm.  Mr. DeFilippo has substantial experience in defending personal injury and wrongful death claims, including claims arising from motor vehicle accidents, motorcycle accidents, and premise liability matters.  He is a 2004 graduate of the Salmon P. Chase College of Law at Northern Kentucky University, and a 1992 graduate of the University of Louisville.

Kentucky Court of Appeals addresses claimant’s attempt to direct the payment of PIP benefits

The Kentucky Court of Appeals recently affirmed a judgment in favor of Progressive Direct Insurance Company concerning the payment of PIP benefits.  Our firm was not involved in the case, but it is of sufficient importance to insurance carriers that we want to make the carriers that we work with aware of the decision.

Progressive’s insured was involved in a one vehicle accident.  He filled out an application for PIP benefits.  The application included a section for the claimant to direct how the PIP benefits should be distributed.  KRS 304.39-241 provides that a claimant may direct the payment of PIP benefits among various elements of loess, i.e. medical expense payment sent directly to the treating physician, reimbursement of medical expense previously paid by health plan, or reimbursement of wage loss.  The claimant attempted to direct the payment of PIP benefits in a different manner, however.

The claimant wrote “RESERVE BENEFITS” and then checked a box indicating that he wanted a check to be sent to him directly.  He treated with a chiropractor, but the bills were not sent to Progressive for payment.  The claimant did not pay the chiropractor and then seek reimbursement.  Rather, the claimant asked Progressive to send him a check for the full amount of medical expenses incurred to date.  Progressive refused to send a check for PIP benefits without listing the treating chiropractor on the check. The claimant sued and the trial court ruled in Progressive’s favor.  The Kentucky Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court’s decision, and you can read the entire appellate opinion here.

Firm wins unanimous defense verdict in mine accident case.

Pete Sewell, Tom Peters and Charlie Walker recently secured a unanimous defense verdict in favor of a conveyor manufacturer in a 2-week trial in Gallatin County, Kentucky.  The suit was brought by the Estate of a mine worker who fell off a conveyor at a local mine, and who later died from his injuries.  The Estate was asking for more than $7 million in medical bills, pain and suffering, and other damages.  We were able to demonstrate that the conveyor involved in the accident was not defective or unreasonably dangerous, and that the cause of the accident was the failure of a the mine worker to follow federally-mandated safety regulations while working on the conveyor, and the failure of the mine to enforce those regulations.  Additionally, we were able to convince the Court to allow a 5-foot replica section of the conveyor to be placed in the courtroom for the duration of the trial, so that witnesses could refer to the replica during their testimony.  The replica was invaluable in convincing the jury that, if the mine worker has followed his federally-mandated safety training, the accident never would have happened.
Continue reading Firm wins unanimous defense verdict in mine accident case.

Charles A. Walker joins the Sewell & Neal legal team

Sewell & Neal PLLC is pleased to announce that Charles A. Walker is now associated with the firm.  Mr. Walker is a 2008 graduate of the University of Louisville Brandeis School of Law.  He eared a Bachelors Degree from Western Kentucky University in Philosophy and Political Science in 2005.  Mr. Walker has experience in defending personal injury claims for Allstate and State Farm in Bowling Green, Kentucky.

Ken O’Brien defends motor vehicle accident claim at trial

Ken O’Brien recently defended a motor vehicle accident claim in the Jefferson Circuit Court.  Our client admitted fault for the accident, and the jury trial was limited to the issue of the Plaintiff’s alleged injuries and damages.  Mr. O’Brien demonstrated that the Plaintiff had a pre-accident history of low back complaints, and that Plaintiff had not acknowledged those complaints in deposition or trial testimony.  The Plaintiff sought to recover more than $275,000, but the jury returned a verdict of $10,000, an amount that was less than what had been offered before trial.