There’s nothing quite like the bond between siblings—and our 23-year-old client was an exceptionally devoted big sister. To celebrate her brother’s fifth birthday, she planned a party at an Orange County amusement park. She knew her brother would love celebrating his birthday with the park’s mini-golf, go-karts, and rock climbing wall.
Unfortunately, what was intended to be a day filled with laughter and joy took a tragic turn. Due to an employee’s inexperience and carelessness, our client was left with severe injuries that prevented her from continuing to pursue her lifelong dream of becoming an elementary school teacher.
A Newly Hired Employee Makes a Devasting Mistake
When our client approached the park’s rock climbing wall with her brother, she was assisted by a 19-year-old employee. He had only been on the job a few days and forgot to fasten her safety rope. Unaware of the employee’s mistake, our client happily reached the top of the wall and smiled at the family members and party guests filming the event. She hit the buzzer, leaned back, and let go—falling more than 30 feet.
Our client was left in tremendous pain, but her first concern was ensuring that her brother was safely escorted out of the area so he wouldn’t be traumatized by the extent of her injuries. Those who witnessed the accident say this selflessness shows the strength of her character.
After seeking medical treatment, our client learned she had shattered two vertebrae in her back and had broken both ankles with a compound fracture in the left ankle. Despite the seriousness of her injuries, her doctors told her it was a miracle she hadn’t been rendered a paraplegic.
No Personal Injury Case Is Ever as Simple as it Seems
To the average person, it might seem like such an obvious case of negligence would be quickly settled. However, our client faced multiple challenges in her fight for fair compensation. She needed attorneys who could think outside the box—and we pride ourselves on our ability to find creative solutions to the roadblocks our clients may face.
Shortly after our client’s accident, the COVID-19 pandemic turned the tourism industry upside down. The owners of the amusement park filed for bankruptcy not long into the case—leaving our firm to deal with the intricate insurance issues that arise when the policyholder is in dire financial straits.
The defense was also attempting to blame our client for causing her injuries by suggesting she should have noticed the unfastened rope. Since she had been climbing before, they argued that she should have double-checked to ensure all safety precautions were being followed. We lined up experts to counter this argument, conducted focus groups with sample jurors, made sure defense counsel couldn’t give us weak discovery responses, and buried them in motions.
Forging a Path Towards a Brighter Future
After a successful mediation, our client received an $8 million structured settlement. She was pleased to avoid the added time, stress, and expense associated with a court trial—and we were happy to help her finally be able to put the trauma of the accident behind her.
While our client has no visible limp, she struggles with chronic pain in her lower back and ankles. This makes it difficult to sit or stand for long periods of time. When the accident occurred, she had just finished her master’s degree in education and was preparing to look for a job teaching elementary school students. Her physical limitations are preventing her from pursuing her planned career in education, but she now has the financial resources she needs as she determines her next steps.
Do You Need to Speak to an Experienced California Personal Injury Attorney?
If you’ve suffered serious injuries that were caused by another party’s negligence, Case Barnett Law is here to help. Our experienced California personal injury attorneys understand the impact an accident can have on your life, and we will work hard to win compensation for your medical costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Call our office at 949.409.0055 or contact us online to request a meeting with our legal team.